3.12.2012

just as real.

I was at home in Wisconsin this weekend and on Sunday we went out to the farm - my great aunt and uncle's farm. Oh, how I love them dearly and how I love this place. I love to hear their stories...to watch them work this land, knowing it has kept them young. She knows the sound of every bird and every squeak and every shuffle in these parts. And today, she told us that if we were lucky and if we listened closely, we might hear the sandhill cranes that had come back for their annual visit. Just then we heard them in the distance.

Then we walked... into the woods and along the ponds, into the meadows and all around. My mom, my sis, and me. The walk was relaxing and calm. No where to be but here. Watching the grasses sway. Admiring the lovely tones of the trees and the soil and the sky. Listening to the sound of the wind of the chapel of the pines. In this quiet place - a sandhill crane flew right overhead, all the while calling out loudly. It would have been hard to miss him actually. And we knew this was a special moment, a special day.

I can't wait share more of this day and I will soon... but for now, more about the cranes...

On my flight home I was continuing to read Loving Frank by Nancy Horan. It is the story of Frank Lloyd Wright's life and at this point in the book, the characters were in Wisconsin. I honestly read only one page before coming upon this part of the story:

"Beyond them was a meadow of grass and, here and there, pools of standing water. A dozen gray sandhill cranes, their heads capped in red, stood in the great puddles. Two cranes were just landing, descending from the sky with their wings wide and their long skinny legs hanging down, like parachutists. The cranes in the water threw their red skulls back and called out.
... "Mamah had the field glass to her eyes. "I like to think about how they only know what they know."
John stared at her blankly.
"What I mean is, they probably don't care a whit about people. We're ants to them, at best. They don't know anything about governments or cooking or newspapers or religion. What they see is water and fields and sky. They don't have words for them like we do. Yet they know them. And they know among themselves all kinds of things that we don't know, things about the wind, and how to find the places along the way that they return to every year. Maybe they have a language we know nothing about. Their experience of this planet is completely different from ours, but it's just as real."

It is funny how that happened. How I saw my first sandhill crane in Wisconsin, only to read about them the next morning in that book. Just one of life's simple reminders that I was exactly where I was meant to be. 




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