I am a little disappointed that Mama Quail left without saying goodbye.
Mama Quail was nowhere to be found the last I saw of the Quail family. Her babies, I think it was they—no longer fuzzy but still a fuzzy brown color—lifted from the ground with a flutter of wings as I started down our long driveway to retrieve our New York Times.
She had taught them well. They recognized an intruder and fluttered away in different directions. If I had been their predator, I would not have known which way to follow.
It is the Autumnal Equinox. Equal day and equal night. Light and dark share the stage equally as our part of the world makes its journey to the Winter Solstice. Dark has dominion during the coming season—staying longer each day until the Solstice, when Light starts its ascent.
The Harvest Moon rose big and bright this week, lighting up the San Juan de Fuca Straits. It’s called the Harvest Moon because in the times before we (we, as in humans) learned how to light the dark with electricity, its brightness extended the day so our food could be harvested into the night.
The beginning of a time of gratitude.
I have always liked the Fall—the way the air cools, the trees adorn themselves with new colors, the light shines through an almost invisible haze. It has always seemed like the beginning to me. Pagans recognize that. It is when they celebrate the end of one year and beginning of the next.
As our home begins this orderly transformation from one season to another, we humans are walking a different path. A mad man uses chemical weapons to slaughter innocents in Syria. Mad men randomly slaughter people going about the mundane motions of their daily lives. Politicians fluff their feathers to appear bigger than they are, threatening world chaos if they don’t get their way.
When God hates the same people you do, you have created God in your own image.
I never know how to answer the question, “Do you believe in God?” I guess it seems like the wrong question to me, as if there are only two answers, “Yes,” or “No.”
It’s not so much I believe in God, as I see there is an orderly transformation from one season to the next. Not orderly in the sense of schedule or chronology or predictability. Orderly in that one season turns into the next. Life begins and Life ends and then a new Life begins. There is pain, there is sorrow, there is joy, there is ecstasy.
If might makes right, there is no room for love in this world.
I don’t think that means being passive. I think it means recognizing that life is more a rock-scissors-paper world than one where owning an assault weapon ensures your safety.
But, what do I know?
I know that today is the Fall Equinox. It is my seventeenth wedding anniversary and we just purchased a home on Happy Valley Road. I will soon be living in Happy Valley where the elk wander through from time to time and the Olympics stand still in the background—a good vantage point to witness the changing of light.
Still. I’m a little disappointed that Mama Quail didn’t stop to say goodbye.