Crossing Wilderness on the Way to Work


A hillside in Eastern Kentucky

What if you had to cross a little wilderness on your way to work?

You may see a snake, venomous, but maybe not. Varmints very well may cross your path while you pretend it’s not frightening. Just a rodent. Only a rodent in the brush.

How many extra shades of green might your eye capture? Mosses, grasses, flowering plants small and large. Bushes and brambles may catch on your clothes, making you less fit to be seen at the office or wherever you happen to be working, with wilderness on the way to it.

There may be a glimpse of something great beyond control, outside the bounds of trammeled and contained. With the lack of structure, your body may feel it can expand, open, free itself in regard to the normal set of rules, but respond on autopilot to ancient norms.

The contrast, perhaps, of this sliver of wilderness you encounter on your way to work may teach you something. You might not have to read Thoreau or Wordsworth or Leopold to know that something in the rest of your life is unspoken to except for when you’re traversing the small section of wild terrain. If you learn of a lack, that could be the first step towards the remedy.

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