The Beavers will not know when we are gone

Beltane and the Beltane Moon

Sunday gratefuls: Gabe and Ruth. Jon, struggling. Again. Still. Snow. Sleep. Fosamax. Bone health. One hour. Then. Levothyroxine. Then one hour. Then. Eat! Coffee! Acting. Learning a new way. Sumi-e. Ruby. Brooke’s Tavern. Overstory. Life review. Bravery in Ukraine. Seoah and Murdoch. Joe back in Singapore.

Sparks of Joy and Awe: Snowplosions. Lodgepoles shrugging off too heavy Snow loads.


The Beavers won’t know when we’re gone. That hit me as I looked across the big Pond created by their huge dam. I’d never seen a Beaver dam that big. Wandering around in the Pike National Forest, I happened across that portion of Burning Bear Creek they altered. Posted photographs of it a couple of days ago.

Sure climate change might alter where they do their thing, but Beavers have moved and adapted for thousands, millions of years. Originating in the Eocene, they crossed into Eurasia over the Bering Land bridge about 33 million years ago. After we burn ourselves off this magnificent home, after the last human merges with the universal consciousness, a Beaver clan somewhere will be gnawing down Birch, dragging them to their pond, eating their leaves and branches while snugging the trunk into their most obvious work.

Could be a dismal thought, I suppose, but as I looked over their creation a Snow covered Mountain Range at my back, it made me feel good. This beauty will not die.  Though an observer that sees it as beautiful may well vanish.

Of course, we may change course. We’ve pivoted before, avoided disaster. Mutually assured destruction for example. A good one at least so far. I hope so. I hope Ruth and Gabe can live into a time when the climate struggle becomes manageable, when humans do find a way to live sustainably here. What a wonderful, joyous moment that would be. I’ll hate to miss it if it happens.

It’s good to live among this many wild things. They are the natural order, the one that will survive our climate changing habits. It is a constant source of consolation for me. The Mule Deer find grass, like the molting Does I saw off Black Mountain Drive. The Moose thrive after having been reintroduced. Trail cams on Next Shadow Mountain catch Mountain Lions eating from a Mule Deer carcass. A large male Black Bear lumbering across a deck. A Fox family with Kits. Bear Cubs scampering up Trees. Marmosets and Raccoons are here, too, like the ones I saw this last week. So many wild neighbors.

Even Dogs. Though not now wild, they could and would adapt. Many, probably most pets would die, but some would survive. Those with strong prey drive like Akitas and Irish Wolfhounds. Cats would go back to their feral ways faster and more easily than Dogs.

Wildness is a not an alternate way of being. It is the Way. All animals know wu wei. They live by it. Following the food where it emerges. The Water where it gathers. Finding places to sleep among the Rocks, the Mountain Pastures and in Reedy spots near Marshes. Enjoying the Sun’s warmth. Hibernating if food grows too scarce. As we did once long ago, as hunter gatherers.

We can learn wu wei. Yes, we can. It’s not easy with all the barriers we put up. But even humankind can follow the way things are going, leaning into them rather than pushing against them. Wu wei comes easier as we age.

Accepting death is a good place to start. Social constructs like making more money, seeking fame, impressing others, even being strong can fall away. Dissolved in the acid of approaching death. No longer necessary. So why not accept it? Embrace the change from life to death. Not in a morbid, depressing manner, but in a manner that frees us up to explore our inner world, to love more deeply, to share with more honesty.

Reflections from a Mountain drive.


This entry was posted in Aging, Dogs, Feelings, Fourth Phase, Great Wheel, Great Work, Jefferson County, Mountains, Park County, Plants, Shadow Mountain, Weather +Climate. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.