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Featured in the group Forests Oct 2009

Featured in the group Healing through Art Oct 2009

I sat watching him sitting there beneath the spruce and oak – a canopy of such density that little snow filtered thru. Winter chill creeping into my bones; I rose from my seat in the fallen leaves to run thru a series of deep knee bends, hoping to warm my blood.
Upon returning to my seat, I looked in utter surprise to see that he was fast asleep. It’s a given that Park animals are far more comfortable with us that usual, but still I couldn’t help but feel a tiny bit flattered that he would trust me enough to fall asleep in my presence. I was raised in a family of hunters, you see. Though I lacked the constitution for it, I participated just the same. It made me feel closer to my father. I went contrary to my nature to get my father’s approval. I wasn’t aware of this at the time. After many years, and having put my guns away, I realized that my life as a hunter had taken a toll on me somehow. I took up a camera, instead of a gun, and without knowing this either, I went into nature to find forgiveness. I had been away from nature for over ten years, away from my childhood friend, that place that I had retreated to for solace so often growing up.

I sat there watching him sleep just a stone’s toss away and something foreign crept its way into me – a feeling that if given a voice to speak would have said to me, “Hey, do you suppose that if he can trust you like this, don’t you reckon you should be able to as well?” It felt like my father putting his arm around me and telling me that nothing else mattered; it was okay to make mistakes – it’s how you learn. I realized that despite all the striving I’d never let me feel approval of me. It wasn’t easy deciding to deal with me in a completely different way. But I met something there that day in the silence of the forest that showed me how to go about it. I found it deep within. A deer friend showed me how to find it.
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©Miles A Moody LivingEarth-Hearthealing.com. Written and photographic works are the sole property of copyright holder; reproduction in part or in full only with expressed permission or purchase.

Nikon 5F, f2.8 @ 1/15, 200 mm, Fuji Velvia, -1 exp.comp fill flash, Gitzo tripod, Wemberly head. Great Smoky Mountain National Park.

Tags

winter, landscape, deer, god, nature, peace, animals, sleep, spirit, harmony, wildlife, serenity, sleeping, divine, sacred, snowfall, antlers, horned, divinity, winter scene, holy spirit, white tailed deer, snow scene, nature scenes

“LIfe is not measured by the number of breaths we take, but by the moments that take our breath away (source unknown).” It is my heartfelt desire to share some of my breath-taking moments, hoping that you also may receive something of enduring benefit.

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Comments

  • A.M. Ruttle
    A.M. Ruttleover 4 years ago

    Wow, what a moment, what a thrill, and what a journey you went on in that flash of time, Miles!

  • yes, it is wonderful to connect with others such as you on that deeper level. Thank you.

    – Miles Moody

  • ourjrny
    ourjrnyover 4 years ago

    Your literary work is as wonderful as your beautiful image Miles. Congratulations on your feature today in the Forests group. This is so deeply moving and very beautiful. I am delighted knowing this magnificent creature is sleeping in a lovely bed of fallen leaves in the stillness of the forest. Beautiful work. I love it so much.

  • Thanks, Sharon, I’m warmed by your kindness.

    – Miles Moody

  • A.M. Ruttle
    A.M. Ruttleover 4 years ago

    Touché, Miles! Congrats on the Feature!

  • Thank you

    – Miles Moody

  • DonnaMoore
    DonnaMooreover 4 years ago

    Great shot….Thank you for adding it to our group “Sleeping Creatures”.

  • Its a cool group, thanks for making it available, Donna.

    – Miles Moody

  • alaskaman53
    alaskaman53over 4 years ago

    Waaauw, what a great moment and a great picture, well done.

  • Thanks, Alaskaman!

    – Miles Moody

  • Lynn Moore
    Lynn Mooreover 4 years ago

  • Thank you so much, Lynn. I feel honored!

    – Miles Moody

  • mrhansen9
    mrhansen9over 4 years ago

    That is a once in a lifetime encounter!!! You shot him at the perfect angle…so well done. A bit too saturated for my liking, but what a moment!!!!!!!!

  • Thanks, Matt.

    – Miles Moody

  • Sandy Stewart
    Sandy Stewartover 4 years ago

    Wow,….this is one of those uniquely rare captures of a life time!!! At first glance, I thought the buck was laying dead, but I noticed its eyes were closed and thought he must be sleeping! lol I very much enjoyed reading your experience with this Buck and it brought back memories of my dad. My dad was also an avid hunter. We lived off of venison for most of our childhood years. One day in my later teenage years, I asked my dad why he wasn’t hunting anymore and he told me that he was getting soft and took more pleasure in shooting them with his camera. When growing up we were not well off and so hunting was a way for my dad to bring cheaper meat to the table. Thank you for sharing this wonderful capture and experience with us! : )

  • Hi Sandy, I can relate very much to your sharing, since the financial situation was much the same; your dad sounds like he’s had a similar experience with wildlife as me. There was a character on the TV show “Northern Exposure” who said the very same thing. There’s comfort in the sharing for me. Thank you.

    – Miles Moody

  • Bellavista2
    Bellavista2over 4 years ago

    Magnificent photo and story, just brillance:=}

  • Ah, thanks so much :-) So kind.

    – Miles Moody

  • ritaagostinelli
    ritaagostinelliover 4 years ago

    Awesome capture Miles and touching words….excellent! He found you to be a trusting soul and soooo his comfort zone was found…how sweet!! :))♥

  • Thank you, Rita; Yes, I judged myself as bad having turned against the sense of belonging I felt as a child in nature. What happened with this buck was reinduction back into that sense of communion. What I hadn’t been able to feel before, was now available in my awareness – forgiveness first and then restoration into what I had lost. His influence, his trust, and all that came thru him encouraged me to allow that back into my experience.

    – Miles Moody

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