When the challenges of life threatened to overwhelm me I tented out on a three-acre island in Economy Lake. A quarter mile from the mainland allowing it to appear more like an explosion of rock lined with trees. It was also a sanctuary for birds, small animals and a place of respite, for someone like me.
When twilight crept forward, I drew strength from its ancient song.
Each evening, wind descended with an eerie whistle. It was a restless spirit, yet soothing. Pine needles tossed around my campsite. Overhead was a movement of wings. Branches groaned quietly as a feathery weight settled in the security of a red pine.
I was able to absorb the majesty of this little piece of earth.
Nighttime was like a cloaking blanket, sun's flickering glow signaling daytime's farewell. A hint of red escalated to a goodnight kiss. Trees picturesque as statuettes shivered beside the shore. Stirring waves had a soothing effect on my spirit; their movements numerous as stars in the sky.
The atmosphere of this island retreat trembled when each nighttime sound paused. Then, familiar calls interrupting the chilly night air; "AAH-OOH-AAH-OOH-AAH" released from a loon. His song claimed the island as his own; each chord as hurrying steps into the starry sky.
Trees trembled. Limbs crackled and I felt such a rebirth from this nighttime energy; like living in a different world. Fireflies flickered in patterns, creating an atmosphere of friendliness. Clouds lingered in lazy swirls; a path of white created by the moon. Its flashlight beam provided a direct link to my tent site.
Joining together with lake, rock, trees and earth helped create a chain of fellowship.
Stars sheltered the island's 'potpourri' of emotion; their diamond-like sprinkling a gift. It seemed as if they were able to reach out from the ‘milky way’ to the very core of the island. Nights rose and fell as each new wonder manifested itself.
Time measured in the softness of moss. Ferns swept forward in one last leafy dance.
Enlightenment mobilized from the east as a blanket of night raised itself. A rhythm of fur and feather slowly abated.
The appearance of morning sun was a signal for sleep. And the forest and its creatures always obeyed. So did I as dreams carried on throughout the morning. After resting uninterrupted in the next few hours, I returned refreshed to the “hustle and bustle” of a plastic world.
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© Richard L. Provencher