09 February 2010

Their Sauce Is Hunger

The wolves are exceeding hungry this winter, as they have lost their manners. The pack that  shadows me is normally polite, or as polite as wolves can be, always granting the sporting chance. Not on this day of which I write. The weather, you see, has been rather extreme in its feathery precipitation. Blizzard and storm of late have emboldened them and weakened me.

Today, they barely allowed me to shut the door to the car before commencing to howl. Unnerving, that. Especially while driving on slushy roads narrowed by a superabundance of snow. To my credit I did not lose my grip on the wheel upon hearing that supernatural wail.

They are perceptive creatures with an uncanny ability to sense weakness in others. Hence their superlative skill in bringing down prey. Some may, and some have, regarded this practice of feeding on the weak as one of cowardice; to hunt in packs and pick off the slow or enfeebled or inattentive as a sign  of unwillingness to 'stand and fight' on level ground, as it were. This belief is incorrect and overlooks the core truth that wolves are far from cowards.

Wolves, like any predators, are smart.

Cold winters in unforgiving terrain do not allow the cowardly and stupid to survive, at least not for very long. Wolves know implicitly that energy and time cannot be wasted. They do not write books on the topic of 'Minimum effort, Maximum gain', but they could if they possessed the 'civilized' gifts of writing and institutional knowledge. So wolves understand that to increase the odds of success, weaknesses and drawbacks must be exploited. This is the so-called Law Of Nature in a nutshell.

I understand this, too, if through the filter of being the prey. The weather calamities have reduced my ability to run, to hold at bay, these wolves that prowl the mixed forest of my mind. I am weakened, I am becoming inattentive. The energy to fight back is waning fast.

So it was this past Monday, when I dropped my daughter off after spending an extra day with her, due to that superabundance of snow I alluded to earlier. It was her presence that gave me balance on what was a difficult weekend, mentally. I found myself increasingly sad the closer we were to the destination, and when I leaned over to hug her goodbye I thought my heart was going to fall out of my chest. I murmured 'I love you', she responded in kind, and I quickly returned to the car. As I pulled out of the slush and into the narrowed road, that unearthly howl went up in my mind, followed by the hairs on my neck. The road diffracted in a hot prism of tears and I choked back as hard as I could. 

The wolves, they moved fast...they were hungry.


  1. The most efficient way not to fall prey to the wolf, is to be the wolf. Run with the pack. Pick that easy target of minimum effort, maximum gain and slay it... something like a gourmet souffle, a chair that needs refinishing, emptying a box of unneeded paperwork.

    And remember that in times like these, even the wolf is on edge. It is the nature of the beast.

    (Or go out looking for a Ba-Donka Donk, and this time honk!)

  2. To your credit indeed, keep you hands on the wheel my friend and you'll be fine, wolves, snow, bears, whatever.

  3. Posts like this are the reason I follow your blog, religiously. Our culture often downplays and devalues emotions in a male. Your writing shows how men feel emotions deeply, in a distinctly masculine way. Bravo.

  4. so sorry, can't imagine what that feels like. saying goodbye.

    you did, however, inspire me to make a kettle of soup last night with lentils and big thick noodles. Yummy it is. Thanks!

  5. I want to tell you it gets easier but I don't know that. Howl if you need to. You have to go through the mountain to get to the other side, you know?

  6. Winter will be over soon, my friend, and the wolves will move on to a place with easier prey. You can stay one step ahead for a little longer, I know you can.


  7. What a beautiful post. I hope you feel better soon and things improve.
    Kate xx

  8. I read this at 5:50 this morning....and sitting in my classroom (6 hours of college english is some level in Dante's no matter how hard I try) and I found myself staring out the window. My husband has a son from his first marriage. The anguish we've both lived through....me, fighting my ass of an ex...him, longing for more time with his son...has changed the planet for us.

    The world is better....is saved...by men like you. Thank you.

  9. damn. You know, you have this way of just getting to the very core of the soul. You? good egg.

  10. Oh jeez ... aren't you just sick to death of the cold and the snow tunnels and the slush and the craptasticness of it all? I know I am ... I'm off to get a tanning package in the morning ... LIGHT THERAPY ... here I come! Be damned the consequences!

    Oy ... and I have to agree with flutter, you're good people!


  11. I think you just sent a chill up my spine...yesterdays snow in my neck of the woods was killer...I had to resort to cooking something warm and comforting...

    You can check it out at http://ow.ly/16gzd this piece should heat up your day...

  12. I can only imagine how hard it is to leave her. We don't have children, but your writing about this makes me want to cling to those I love even stronger.


"Let your laws come undone
Don't suffer your crimes
Let the love in your heart take control..."

-'The Hair Song', by Black Mountain

Tell me what is in your heart...