Learning to Dance

Explorations in the Spiritual Life

Date: July 4, 2004


Special fourth of July treats. A barbeque with steak and corn, an evening spent with family, cheery even if less than wonderfully entertained, and a fireworks show of the stars, bright and clear, wonderful in the warm summer night.

More wonderful is the delightful scene I watched for many hours upon the deck. It was the noises which first caught my attention. I looked up high, where some caw like mumbling was coming from the dead pine. I looked up to see a raven in the branches, standing over the nest. Then another raven stuck it’s head out, and another, then a raven flew in.

I could see the baby ravens for the first time, hear them. For whatever reason I’ve missed them before, because they are large now, very large, almost full grown, though not quite ready to leave the nest. Still, they open their mouths to feed when mom or dad come back from their now frequent forays for food.

And they cannot quite yet fly. A bold nestling climbed onto the edge, flapped its wings, shook its tail, discovering those wonderful tools which it cannot quite yet depend on.

Watching the baby ravens emerging from the nest, seeing the parents dutifully serving their needs is a sight which will make this 4th memorable for many years to come. The dual ravens have doubled in number, though it will not be long until we are back to two again, and the young birds who were saved by the care of Federal law and an attentive man with a chainsaw will find their own way in this world.


The area is filled with people, neighbors rarely around at the same time bumping into each other with the usual neighbor issues and relations.

Gets in the way of peace a bit, though the ravens, and jays, and visiting, frolicking squirrels are doing their best.

This is a holiday to be sure, a day truly worthy of celebration, and yet, for me, in my quest to restore a rhythm and break through the impasse it is not an entirely welcomed day.

Ah, well.

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