Bears ringing in my ears, voices strong and growling out the fierce love of Pachamama. Bears lumbering up and down my spine leaving imprints of claws on tips of toes that dig in to say “we are here,” puncturing the surface of ignorance. Bears flipping rainbow trout out of the icy shards of red rivers within. Bears rolling down the greening hills in playful abandon with new cubs, new life, breath fresh from cave hibernation. ROAR! JOY! Buddha bears with full round bellies ripe and gestating love. Bears pull aside the rotting trunk of a long ago tree to find the precious nourishment of grubs that others would turn away from.

Bears visiting one who is unfamiliar with them though I honor their magnificence. Bears with their thick fur and thicker skin and thicker-still layers of fat to live upon while dreaming the world into new possibility. She is Bear … and I welcome Her presence, a special gift this morning, unexpected following an exhausted deep sleep.

Bears dipping into honey for sustenance sweet and delicate, hours spent licking the soma from long claws while bees hurry to make more that would be wasted without the bears to partake. Bears stretching high to leave marks in silent woods of solitude. Bears of great hunched shoulders and broad hips and feet so wide the river narrows to go between and around the presence that show the way inside to the starry center of mystery.Bear Statue

“Go traveling with us!”

Her travels daily be

By routes of ecstasy

To Evening’s Sea— 

(Emily Dickinson)

Bear journeys far and near, footprints to follow, until night falls and She becomes the overhead infinite expanse of indigo sea that twinkles merrily into Milky Way and Aurora’s curtains upon Bear’s face raised, nose twitching, shifting weight back and forth in rhythmic dance to the pulsing ocean above. Feel Her?

Bear is our mother and she loves, protects, teaches, sets us free among the ecstasy of life paths, every step a full measure of space in entrance to the next as we hold her paw in our hearts. My foot disappears into the mud where she once was and I am enveloped by her.

An early connection to Bear was the statue I sculpted in a class many years ago. Yet I hear her this morning and feel her within me lending her strength, assurance, confidence. We both den and hibernate, enjoy solitude and caring for our young, lumber along hidden trails through forest groves tasting the sweetness we discover along the way, and fall into slumber as worship. My knowledge of Bear is little but her wisdom is great and I feel her presence now; I open to her chuffs and grunts that echo in my heart-forest. We clasp our round bellies … and breathe into journey, into ecstasy, into infinite sea that shines before us, a dark oval without stars our portal into deeper peace and renewal.

Hiking to the summit pales compared to trekking deep into the cavernous infinite where luminous algae softens vision and satin-damp walls invite and offer caress, brushing our fur, our skin, with the moisture of remembered creation. A subterranean sea calls to us and we plod along together toward the unknown flotilla of sleep with eager heart and patient pace and serenity upon face.

Bear stands on her hind feet and wraps her limbs around me; I disappear into her fur-cloak where no separation exists, and when we move together all the world has settled above us.


The above was a stream of consciousness flow this morning that I simply followed. At one point, during a pause, I opened at random to an Emily Dickinson poem. I love how it seemed to fit with the mood of the writing.

5 thoughts on “Bear

  1. This is beautiful, Darla. Bear has been my totem animal for 24 years, ever since s/he showed up in a fairy tale I wrote for my first book. She’s been with me ever since in art, physical forms on my desk, in my dreams, and in my writing. Thank you for bringing her to me again on a day when I felt the need for her strength and mothering energy! Warmly, Jeanie

    • Thank you, Jeanie. How synchronous! I finally have acquired all three of your books and can hardly wait to dive into them once this semester is finished, and more of my time is freed. Thus, I will soon be reading about your relationship with Bear. Bountiful Blessings!

  2. Pingback: The Morning after Woe | on the Gaia Path

Thank you for sharing.

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