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Meditative Essay: "Meeting Friends" Trevor Green

Looking outside, lots of things speak to me. These things, whether they can chirp at me, or only stare at me from above, below, and all around, they are just always there. We take the things around for granted, and that is troubling. Like these leaves. Sitting on the Earth’s floor, spending their last days in harmony by snapping and crackling at anyone who treads on them. Whether they’re getting pushed around by rakes or blowing in rapid winds, they make their last days memorable by exploring all over. But when their time is up, they will go out with a crack. A snap. I never imagined I would feel bad for stepping on something that seems so lifeless, but yet I do. I ended its journey. Leaves spend their lives just dangling, worrying only about getting picked by a kid, or being snacked on by a growing caterpillar. They do so much, but yet we treat them by pushing into piles, and letting them rot and decompose.

But what about those little critters buried under the piles of leaves. Your rolly pollies stink bugs, beetles, and all kinds of little friends can be seen doing what bugs do. These creatures lurk in the shadows, as they hide and work all day to help others. These bugs work every day, all day, no days off to help sustain themselves in their short lifespans.

Near those leaves, you can see a squirrel preparing for the impending weather. Although I can’t see it, I can guarantee that thousands of microscopic things roam the fur on that squirrel as if it is a wilderness. Staring at the grey fibers that it's covered in, I wish I could let him know or somehow signal that I’m not trying to hurt him. I only want to get a glimpse of him close up, and just ask what he does to spend his time besides borrowing acorns into the ground. I’ve never seen a squirrel do anything else, now that I think about it. But yet, as I try to creep up on him stealthily, he scatters away up a tree as he finds cover.

In defeat, I search for something to explore. I listen for just a few seconds, and I can hear tons of stories being told by birds with nothing better to do. These birds have a dimension that most squirrels do not have; flight. Maybe you could try to chase down a squirrel, but it would be hard. Birds, however, just fly away, boasting their colorful patterns in the air as they glide into the shelter.

I feel like I have stumbled into a bird city with all of the noise. It sounds as if birds are arguing, singing, laughing, and taunting each other all at once. This total chaos somehow turns into a total symphony as you tune everything out and enjoy the noise. As the birds celebrate and panic, I look into the branches playing a game of “I Spy”, looking for certain birds. Some birds, with beautiful colorways and arrogant postures, stick out like sore thumbs, but other, much duller birds sneakily blend in with the aging leaves around them. I could spot?? spot with my little eye maybe ten bright birds chirping, but barely stumbled upon one duller bird, hiding with its dark palette.

After staring at the sky, I looked down below and gently swept some leaves, looking for anything else I can meet. The wrinkly and rough leaves worked as great protection and cover for an unsuspecting toad. Not to be confused with a frog, he was dull like the birds to blend in, with a seemingly rough but oily skin covering him. You could see his heart beating vigorously as I stumbled upon his home in fear. At least he would let me come close to him, but any swing I made at him would result in him hopping a few steps away. He stared into my eyes with horror and decided to run away in the end, but I did get a good glimpse of toad life. If I ever stumbled upon giant thousands of times my size, I would pull a squirrel and just run away on scene.

All of these friends that I meant in just a ten-minute block show how much we take for granted around us. Being outside with no distractions and with only nature is truly an amazing experience, with all of the chatter and moving parts that we do not even think twice about. Everything around us is always moving, but yet somehow we seem to get distracted and forget.

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