Foxes. Friends.

June, and I work in the garden or the outside tables as much as possible, countering my indoors job and the pandemic years that have thrown me (and humankind) off-balance. Despite the unusual cold and wind, I often read outside in the evenings while the neighbors’ boys bike on our dead-end road, calling out my name.

Just beyond the pin cherry trees, the foxes come and go, reddish-brown, their front legs black. They’re not disturbed in the least by the man who walks his leashed dog in the cemetery, both man and dog head down, preoccupied with what, I have no guess. Across the milkweed and lupine, the foxes and I stare at each other, before I silently head my way, or they head theirs.

They go about their lives of hunting and playing, their ears and eyes alert to the world around them. I go about my human life of language and thought — a life that sometimes seems fixated on lists and transactions. For these moments, coming and going like the sun through clouds, this relationship feels like one of the realest in my life, devoid of our human tendencies towards deceit and self-absorption. I’m not about to become a fox, but I might become a slightly better human for these true friends.

The gods, we are taught, created humankind in their own image. Everyone has an urge to create. Its expression may flow through many channels: through writing, art, or music or through the inventiveness of work or in any number of ways unique to all of us, whether it be cooking, gardening, or the art of social discourse. The point is to honor the urge. To do so is healing for ourselves and for others; not to do so deadens our bodies and our spirits.

~ Dr. Gabor Maté, In the Realm of Hungry Ghosts

12 thoughts on “Foxes. Friends.

  1. The quote at the end of your blog made me think about all the ways that my creative endeavors pulled me out of the denial and isolation I so naturally sink into when life becomes overwhelming. But, I have to release myself from any expectation that my creative efforts need to do anything but exist as a process to understand myself and the world more fully. I have to let go of how others or even the critic in me see what comes out of all the messy process of creating something. If I can just create and not judge, I can use the process to keep me sane.

  2. “a life that sometimes seems fixated on lists and transactions”
    — I almost thought you’re talking about me on this. Your posts are always full of reflections. Thanks for sharing, Brett Ann.

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