A Perspective of Growth
My celebration of loss, acceptance, and transition
When my mother died, she was gifted a second life within the likeness of another. I watch her perch from time to time, in a large oak in a grove on my property. Honestly, it is in truth her property. A quilt of fallen snow insulates her land from the warmth of spring on its way. Pure in its bright and stark contrast against her domain of nightfall. In that darkness, she sits as comfortable as a child in a womb. Cloaked in her comfortable sheath of icy black, she melts easily into either her dark surroundings, or the smooth fragile snow far below her tender white feathers.
She never calls to me; I have come to understand she never will. I am at peace with this. How many times in human form did she call to me, or I to her? She must be tired, and desires rest. Rest she does, with grace and quiet atop her branch. She has a new family now. If you wait long enough from afar, you may catch glimpses of the little round faces with little sharp feet, bobbing and chirping at our mother. I do not hold this against her; her new family is as lovely as her former family. We do not hold grudges on mortal issues any longer. As her dark, loving eyes watch me watch her, I can feel that truth between us.
Every misty exhale of hot release the night air catches for me while I remain breathing, are relished icy gifts that nourish my spirit. Her spirit, which resides within me. As I gaze upon my own flesh’s reflection in the full moonlight, I dream to be as beautiful as she. I yearn to somehow become the same brilliant colors as she. As lovely and pure as her silent haired feathers; as lovely as her snowy domain; as mesmerizing as her azure visage in the blue light of Luna. I want my shadow to have as much meaning as hers. I want my own young to look upon me with such awe as hers do.
After a mere hundred sun rises followed by equal sunsets, the alabaster cast of her grove slowly retreats. That retreat, though solemn and sullen in its truth, nourishes new life in the surrounding world. Perhaps she looks as lovely and elegant draped in forest green wreaths as she does in frozen wonder. The large wide eyes of her offspring seeing moss for the first time warms my thawing heart. I watch this transition with rosy cheeks and teary eyes. I am convinced that nothing else I have ever seen means as much to me as the happiness and hope I see in those tiny faces. Tiny faces that grow larger every cycle of the celestial orbs we observe to pass the time. We watch them carry out their supernatural duty while we ponder our own.
What does it all mean? What does it mean to lose a mother, yet gain a muse? I am thankful she has become a symbol for me to rely on. My own form of celestial orbs which rotate around my days and my nights. Dueling emotions in a war with the world; in a war with fate; in a war with myself. I assist the seasonal transitions by providing the life giving ground with water of my own. Although minuscule in measurement, my tears join the nourishing flood to become fields of emerald soon to be.
These beautiful barren snowscapes will become awash with lengths of moss of every color. Great tufts of endless red and crimson; wonderful displays of every shade of green; to the trained eye, one can begin spotting traces of blue or purple among the ferns; witnessing fairies playing in puddles near the riverbank can become as commonplace as the rotating orbs of our world. Magic exists if you use the right lens to see it. If you touch the right places. If you breath in and exhale with specific intent.
I ponder these ever shifting events as I watch my mother preen in the not so subtle beauty of another sunrise. We spent all evening together, yet again. She is on her branch searching for sustenance for her new children to thrive. In this place, I am simply a visitor lurking in her shadow. I steal glances at her life because I am not quite ready to return to my own. However, just as the moonless nights give way to another burning day; just as every icy wonder becomes a nourishing and life enabling flood; just as every life feels they are the center role in the story they live; worldly transitions don’t ask our permission to exist, but can be wondrous just the same. If one can entertain beauty in all things, then it is no stretch to appreciate the incredible reality of a barn owl basking in the moonlight. A perfect entity in a perfect world of her own. The perfect mother.