Spirit of Life, source of all change:
The end of autumn is nearly near
and all is darkness and waiting.
In the deep woods the tracks of animals
tell stories of lives unseen:
Bear has found a ground bees’ nest
dug it out
and eaten all the larvae.
Great Blue Heron
whose foot is longer than mine
has hunted in the canal for fish.
Young Raven has dropped sticks from a great height
and then gone to the ground
to see what became of them.
So much life goes on unseen—
at least by us—
because we are busy looking elsewhere.
How much life among humans
How many joys and sorrows
are tucked away in hearts
not quite brave enough to share?
What wells of longing
lie waiting to be tapped
by words of kindness,
a hand held out?
Who is putting on a brave face?
Who is just barely hanging on?
May we look carefully
into one another’s faces.
May we learn to read
each other’s signs.
May we offer each other deep listening
so true stories can emerge.
In this time of darkness and waiting,
help us pay close attention,
so that no life goes unseen.