Tuesday, May 5, 2020

A little gift from a little fox

Written by  Rosa Caswell

 

“In three words I can sum up everything I've learned about life: it goes on.”

― Robert Frost

The other day I was riding my bike home from work and I saw a fox. That’s right, a fox in the middle of the day, in the middle of the city. Beautiful, graceful, magical! The kind of thing that makes you feel blessed to have been present. Like the Creator looked upon you with singularity for a moment and offered you a gift, a memory, a treasure that you could carry with you forever.

But the sight was also tragic. This poor fox was limping on its front paw. Maybe a break from trying to cross a road that seemed safe because of the recent slowing in traffic patterns. I have thought of that fox now every time I approach the part of the path I was biking on. But what strikes the memory, like flint on a match, is not the tragedy of the situation, but the calmness of the fox. Here this poor little guy was, surrounded by concrete and metal, out of place and broken. Yet, this fox, with its paw protectively held under its chest, and its ears pointed and searching, looked as calm as a cucumber. And that is what strikes me every day on the path back home: that resilient feeling of peace that emanated from this small and beautiful creature.

Allow me to clarify, (and please excuse my assumption – I am not a fox whisperer) but I don’t think the fox was telling itself to “pull it together man, tomorrow is another day! No time for feeling sorry for yourself right now!” It felt different than this sort of “Life will go on”, so shove your feelings and buck up” pep talk we give ourselves so often. The feeling of the moment, the stillness in the fox’s face as he looked at me and I looked at him, was not one of words or action, but of a simple acceptance. His leg was broken, it hurt, and every part of that experience was hard. But life, of its own accord, just does go on whether we feel it will or not, whether it hurts or not. And there is something so amazing about that. Every day the sun rises, every season brings its trials and gifts, every day creatures die and every day more are born.

Life, fragile yet resilient, vulnerable yet indestructible, really does go on. It is surprising how much joy and hope this gives me. It is my constant in the face of all the change, my assurance in instability. So, thank you little fox, I hope you heal, I hope you find your home, and I hope to meet you again.

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