… the best armor or shield or defense is not enough. Sometimes we need the help of something greater to keep us safe …
A tree of great size rises up as I approach. I am drifting silently on a slight breeze. The tree, maybe an ancient elm, climbs up into the sky, three or four times higher than any of the other trees around. There is an emotional foundation that radiates from her trunk, implying that the roots reach even deeper than her branches reach upward. I am a small being that has come to visit. She gives me a lesson about strength and stability, not necessarily for myself but in how I must be stable for others. I fly upward and drift through many leafless twigs until I see a large object high up in the branches. I think at first it is the nest of an eagle, but it is not a nest. As I approach I see that it is Porcupine, curled and sleeping. He wakes and looks at me with very deep dark glassy eyes that have a subtle sadness to them. I ask him why he sleeps so high up in the tree and why he isn’t in his home underground. He tells me that his home is wherever he is safe, and that a great Lion has been chasing him. The Lion remains back in the tall grass, hidden, but continually watching, even now. Porcupine tells me that sometimes the best armor or shield or defense is not enough. Sometimes we need the help of something greater to keep us safe. Porcupine had the Great Elm to be his helper on this day.
This is my journey,
— Nate Long “Owl”
ink with digital manipulation