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The Circle of Life

As we wandered from thee meadow and into the marshland we walked off the trail to watch the ducks swim in the water. It was as I looked over my shoulder to the left I felt a cold shiver and excitement as I saw what laid only a few feet away.

I pointed to the kids, “Look!”

We walked over to examine theΒ  Bison remains that laid before us. It was at that moment a thought crossed my mind that this was the first time I saw animal remains not within the confines of a museum but in the open wilderness.

It was there the remains laid untouched diminishing into the earth. My oldest wondered out loud, “What do you think happened to him?”

I replied, “I am not sure. Perhaps, he was sick or was attacked by another animal.”

The littlest stared in awe, “Do you think he suffered?”

“I don’t know. It looks as if he chose a quiet spot to move onward and rest in peace. ”

It was with that we peered closer at the remains and noticed a small band of hair left around his horns. His peering eyes seemed to whisper that he had discovered a new open plain on his next journey.

We all began to feel as ifΒ  were lingering to long around the resting bison. It was then we moved back onto the winding trail.

As we moved forward we came across another meadow that was filled with life.

My oldest gazed out, “So that is the meaning of the circle of life.”

What does the circle of life mean to you?

Categories: bison circle of life elk island national park hayburger trail Mother Nature

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Darcie Cameron is a RYT 200 who believes Yoga is a gift that is accessible to everyone with proper modifications, a patient smile and just taking the time to breathe. One of the greatest presents you will ever unwrap is when you connect your mind, body and spirit in perfect sync with your own breath. Connect with Darcie on Facebook

44 replies

      1. They really are sacred and something that is revered by the Blackfoot community. They use to rely on many parts of the bison in order to survive and protect their families.

  1. Beautiful post. I have nothing to add about the circle of life. As a physician who did “cradle to grave” medicine, I saw too much suffering throughout the spectrum. Modern medicine does not let us leave the world as gracefully as that bison. And, sometimes we tend to forget that death is NOT an option.

    1. But sometimes we can – leave gracefully, that is. Where you’re right is that such leave-taking requries intentionality. When my mother spent five weeks in four ICUs, acute care facilities and such at the end of her 93 years, staying abreast of things and making sure her care was adequate was some of the hardest work I’ve ever done. And I don’t regret a minute of it.

      I’ve been trying to write a post about the gracefulness of her leave-taking for a couple of months, but it seems to be a little too fresh yet. Everything in its time.

      1. Everything does have its time and it does take time to heal. It took me a very long time to write about my father but it felt very good to let out in the end πŸ™‚

    2. Thank you! I sometimes think modern medicine can sometimes prolong the pain for too long. My wish is to live a long happy life and one day after watching my future grand children grow-up that I will go quietly in my sleep. I know it’s a lot to ask for πŸ™‚

  2. Beautiful post, and so lovely to hear the way your family communicates and learns from little discoveries!

  3. Where were you? How many bison do you have in your area? I think this is fascinating! The only animal remains I have ever run across are the remains of those animals hit by cars on the road. We have a number of squirrels down here in Alabama that seem to have death wishes!


    1. We were at Elk Island National Park in Alberta and they have bison that roam within the park. They actually released a herd in the rockies in Montana so they can roam free. They are really interesting to watch from a distance and you would be surprised how fast these animals can run. It’s amazing!

  4. “His peering eyes seemed to whisper that he had discovered a new open plain on his next journey.” Darcie, that is so beautiful! I really love your interpretation of life coming to a full circle. Because that, indeed, is what the meaning of a life’s circle is. One life goes and another steps in. πŸ™‚

    Big hugs, Amiga!

  5. I have a potted cactus with two raccoon skulls tucked in near the base. I found them up in the hill country on two separate occasions, and love having them around. They’re mementos mori, little reminders of death, the one certainty that comes to us all.

    I’m getting to the age where I think about death more – not in any kind of grotesque or unhappy way, but only as a horizon that’s coming into view. Things look different when seen against that horizon!

  6. Cool post! Your kids are very intuitive! At their ages, I was kind of a smartass kid and probably would have saw the dead animal and said something like “Aaah, evolution. Clearly this one wasn’t smart enough OR fast enough to make it.” πŸ˜‰

  7. Oh my goodness. I just posted my plot today with the same title. lolololol. My circle of life was a little different, related to being an empty nester. ha ha ha.

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