A Circle of Life

Life and death co-mingle as an osprey returns to its nest with a freshly caught fish dinner

Life and death co-mingle as an osprey returns to its nest with a freshly caught fish dinner Photo by Jeff Horner.

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Sometimes in nature it’s really hard to tell if life is coming or going.

A fish that gets snatched from above by sharp talons helps to feed an osprey’s family or the raptor itself. In a purely scientific way, energy is never lost. It is neither created nor destroyed, only transferred and conserved. In a spiritual realm, the soul survives, walking the same walk we all eventually do, going to the place of those who have gone before.

Our ancestors, or just other fish.

Much like a young great-horned owl surveying the prospects and hope of a new life above the hallowed ground and stone markers of Mountain View Cemetery, the circle of life connects the inevitablity of the future and the fleeting frailty of the past.

Whether served up as dinner or diner, it travels in large, sweeping circles, like fish moving in opposing loops that momentarily converge at a single point of understanding or simple transition.

A hummingbird’s resting heart races along at 250 beats per minute. Energy like that will always find a place to exist – tangible as a photograph or as ghostly as a memory.

And as long as it resides within the loop, life continues without regard to its direction of travel.

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