Wild Turkeys – Interbeing

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While walking around the yard this afternoon, thinking about the myriad garden chores that need to be done before the white stuff blankets my green babies, I heard a strange whistling. Turning around, Tom & Terry Turkey strutted with Junior trailing not far away. If you’ve never seen one of these quirky birds, check out National Geographic’s Turkey Trot. Seeing me notice them, they quietly slipped through the neighbor’s Rose of Sharon bushes and disappeared from sight.

Fredonia Brunnera leaf

I checked the Brunnera divisions I’d planted midsummer, and meditated upon how much like the turkey I am. Silently I wander the yard everyday, looking for food when it’s available, but mostly just enjoying being in the *natural* environment. This summer the turkeys have taken to meandering through the neighborhood, checking backyard bird feeders. Previously they came out of the hills only in deep winter, apparently looking for food.

Yesterday when Mike and I began our walk, a Bald Eagle circled above, soaring in the thermals – Its white head and tail clearly defining our national symbol. I cocked my head back and waved, wondering if s/he saw me. Eagles have such incredible vision.

Do turkeys have a sense of aesthetic and enjoy being with the plants as much as I do? Does the eagle relish the feel of a warm breeze on its skin? Are we all simply looking for food and nourishment wherever we go?

The Vietnamese Zen master, Thich Nhat Hanh, delivers a story of inter-being in his his classic text, PEACE IS EVERY STEP. He relates how everything is related to the piece of paper (or the computer screen I’d add) you may be reading now is related to everything else, from the tree the paper was made from to the logger’s family to you with your perception of the words, and then all of your contacts; well, you get the idea. Can we hold all beings at equal distance, not loving one more than another? Can we, as Lovingkindness meditation master, Sharon Salzburg says on her Lovingkindness meditation cd, exist beyond the barriers of us against them? Can we love ourselves that much – so that we recognize ourselves in the turkey or the eagle?

I snipped a Winter Sunset Rosebud to enjoy on these chilly days indoors, then I fill my pocket with the last of the green beans dangling on vines like ribbons of energy. Prana. Pure prana and we’re all a part of it.

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