There is a river, deep and quickly flowing. The head and antlers of Elk breaks the surface and he is crying in fear with eyes bulging and scared. His nose pointing up toward the moon as River Otter swims next to him, frantically and unsuccessfully trying to help as this mighty beast is trapped within the currents.
Lining the banks on both sides are people – or at least the shadows of people – and they both cheer and cry loudly at this drama. Several bonfires burn along the shores, creating a festival atmosphere which entices some to dance and wave their arms wildly.
And Elk thrashes about as a show for all these spectators.
I sit upon the branches above all of this, feeling grateful that I can separate myself from these onlookers and voyeurs, and yet in my own way I watch it all, too, with a slight excitement in my chest and a sadness in my heart.
I realize with pain that I really cannot help and that even though I may not be human… I am a spectator, too.
This is my journey.
Nate Long “Owl”
Graphite with digital manipulation