There are things that we do, say, don’t do, that leave an imprint. A scar. A Kiss. That not only affects those in which the imprint was left on, but also on and with those leaving it. Even if we not aware of it…
Often times, just because we don’t have clear vision of what our impact is on others, or on the world, others do. Be it good or bad. Be it intentional or unintentional.
Lately there has been a lot that I have seen that has made me ask myself, “Who are we”? Truly as people who are we? who have we become? Why is the standard not, for each of us to live our personal best? Why do we tend to give ourselves permission to be less than what God intended us to be? Not just to each other, but to self and to those who we have been given charge over.
I wont even start down the potholes of politics…. truly it make sick… but, I am not going there. Instead, I want to share a story about something that my hubby and I recently experienced on our trip to Portland.
From our home to highway 14 we get to go over Satus pass. This stretch of road has been a heart string of mine for a very long time. When I first began taking this soujourn, I was in college. I considered it a good trip if I saw a horse…. a wild horse… flash forward to last week when you could not find a stretch of land that didn’t have horses on it. As I was snapping photos out the car window, Tom hit the breaks, stopping for some cows that had made their way to a very busy pass road. One traveled by semi truck after semi truck. We, naturally stopped to see how we could help. There were farmers that lived a long the road, walking up to SHUT their gates…
Me, being me, asked them what they were doing. Didn’t they know that by shutting the animals out, they were contributing to what accident may come. They didn’t care. As they vented about the hassles of living in an OPEN range area… I was stunned.
Don’t get me wrong, I can compassionately see the pain that open range would have on those trying to protect crop and land and … in these hard times, I can. But, who are we, that the only options are the two extremes on either side of an issue? Are we really so lazy, so cold, so disconnected with other living things that we cannot take the time to come up with something that gives both sides the most of what they can have?
The disregard to human life, animal life, property of others…. is mind blowing to me…. past the point of being mad, into being heart sick.
I was speechless as I stood there listening to the farmer lock his gate and turn his back. I watched the cars pass…. a beautiful teen age girl driving a red Honda, and elderly cowboy in a ford pick up, semi drivers with their peddles to the metals… did we not care about any of them…. I watched the cows…. startled with each passing automobile…. reacting as if they were caged…. Dear God I prayed…….
As my eyes darted from field to field, I was further troubled by the horses that had come down off the mountains in search for food. They are so skinny….. It is an image that has stayed with me, wont let me rest. Wont let me go. I will say, it has consumed me. It has consumed my thoughts, my prayers, my soul….
Made worse by the comments of some well meaning people, who feel I need to remember that they, the horses, are just animals.
I’ve thought a lot about that. Believe me I have. I have spent hours tearfully looking through Genesis and this is what I know. God did give Adam dominion over the animals. But, can I just say that God too, asked Adam to name them. Have you noticed that the care we give to animals that we have named, it vastly different then those that we have not named? I can picture Adam standing there hour after hour as animals passed past him. He looked at them, pet them, saw their differneces and unique qualities.. and then he named them.
I wonder what would happen if we asked the Nations Chiefs to stand out on the Satus as we pushed the horses past him, asking him to name them…. if we would see what we are seeing on the Satus? I think no. I wonder then if there couldn’t be a plan put into place that allows a small percentage of the Casino’s profits to go towards feeding stations for the horses.
I wonder what it takes to have tribal elders honor the horse the way that I have heard my God-dad.. my ATE’ John – who is Native American, share the sacredness of these animals.
We romanticize the wild horses….they are what books are made of, movies make money on, legends were founded on.. but in truth, there is a reality that we refuse to see. We have created a world where, whether they, the horses, like it or not.. Natives like it or not, whites like it or not, the horses need us… and we, need them. They are the link between what was, and what is. They serve as a mirror into who we are. Like it or not.
There are many sides to this issue, no one is more right, more wrong, more guilty than the other, but who cares… I don’t need to be on a right side, I need to find a community of people, Natives, White, Hispanic, democratic , Republican, I don’t care, that says; we looked into the eyes of the horse and didn’t like what it reflected back… and we changed it.
What happens when the horses stop running on the Satus? what does that say about us? I don’t know about you, but I long to RUN with the wild horse.