Wednesday, March 4, 2009
The Circle Of Life (With Hot Deer Action)
A few weeks ago we were walking in the cemetery near our home, feeling a bit melancholy, trying to get some bracing, late-winter fresh air into our restless children. And, quite unexpectedly and despite all our noise, we came upon this:
A group of five mule deer, their gray and brown winter coats blending almost seamlessly with with the leaves, earth, and headstones.
They were just there, apparently having wandered way up from the river, across a very busy road, and into the relative sanctuary of the cemetery.
They noticed us, but they didn't run.
The kids were completely dumbstruck. Right here, smack dab in the middle of our city with cars racing past on three sides, were these deer, blinking lazily and glancing our way every now and then.
I snapped picture after picture, never putting down my camera, until the kids' hands grew cold in the darkening afternoon and they went with Byron to sit in the car.
And then I started to feel emotional, watching these animals alone, thinking about these gentle, wayward, stupid deer in the middle of this cemetery, these beautifully-made creatures just stumbling into our lives and nestling into this place of death in the center of all this chaos and remember that scene in The Queen where Helen Mirren is alone and sees the stag and the stag is totally a symbol of Diana with all the hunting and chasing and also a symbol of Christ and...
The circle of life, ladies and gentlemen.
Which, really, is both what I get for being maudlin and weird and exactly what I needed to see, something so funny and inappropriate and perfect, a reminder that Life is always marching forward, looking for a place to assert itself and take hold again.
(Even if Life is all hooves and clumsy as hell.)