i had an encounter with a bear today
i was completely safe
which allowed me to really experience him
for our brief minutes together
and instead of being terrified
as i would have been in the past
i felt only awe...
i noticed how shiny and midnight black his coat was
and when he looked at me with slight hesitancy and wariness
i looked right back at him and felt such a feeling of wonder spread through me.
i grew up with a serious fear of bears.
a fear that was deep, consuming and persisitent.
today there were none of those feeling.
i felt no threat. no malice. just mutual curiosity.
i watched him lumber up the side of the hill and i continued on my way down the hill
smiling at the unexpected gift that came to me.