img_1957An early form of writing or waterfowl prints in the ice?

“Amazingly, we take for granted that instinct for survival, fear of death, must separate us from the happiness of pure and uninterpreted experience, in which body, mind, and nature are the same. And this debasement of our vision, the retreat from wonder, the backing away like lobsters from free-swimming life into safe crannies, the desperate instinct that our life passes unlived, is reflected in proliferation without joy, corrosive money rot, the gross befouling of the earth and air and water from which we came.” ~ Peter Matthiessen, The Snow Leopard. Reading this again after many years. I know a number of people who “chase” rare birds; they always make me think of this book.

Sometimes the hunt is very much besides the point. Just ask the Simorgh: the great being/power/bird “The Conference of Birds” journey to for answers in the 12th century Persian poem. Thirty birds, most reluctantly, with their all too human excuses, finally make it to meet the Simorgh, only to discover their own faces reflected back to them. “Simorgh” meaning, well, “thirty birds.”

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