The Rhythms of the Woods

I asked this handsome fellow to pose in front of the Trego Nature Trail. Oh, wait. That's me.

I’m in the third full day of my Wisconsin cabin retreat. I am happy to report that I am getting attuned to nature’s rhythms. Living and walking amidst the woods in northwest Wisconsin has naturally slowed my pace both mentally and physically. I find myself synchronizing with the absence of natural light by going to bed earlier. I’m even driving more slowly in order to honor the beauty of the scenery; it’s almost hypnotically calming to gaze at the fields of green and gold. (What other colors would they be in Packers territory?) I typically listen to sports talk shows in the car but turning the radio on in the midst of such splendor would seem too jarring.

Gazing down at the Namekagan River on the Trego Nature Trail

The centerpiece of my retreat, which my hosts, John and Kristin Anderson, have so generously extended from four days to eleven, is hiking the Trego Nature Trail along the Namekagon River. I just completed the seventy-five-minute walk for the third consecutive day and look forward to walking it every day for the rest of my stay.

Another spectacular view on the Trego Nature Trail

I make a point to stop on the trail every so often to gaze at the water rushing by. The river is teeming with life and purpose, as is the vegetation lining the riverbanks for as far as the eye can see.

In the world’s audience hall, the simple blade of grass sits on the same carpet with the sunbeams, and the stars of midnight.
Rabindranath Tagore

The breathtaking beauty of the Trego Nature Trail

Every reddish-gold leaf fluttering down, every loose branch crackling under my feet, every fallen tree has purpose.

Every blade of grass has its angel that bends over it and whispers, “Grow, grow.
The Talmud

Thank you, John and Kristin, for a most wonderful gift!

If you find yourself in northwest Wisconsin, be sure to experience the Trego Nature Trail

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Phil is the author of Through God’s Eyes: Finding Peace and Purpose in a Troubled World, a comprehensive guide to living a spiritual life. Who will benefit from reading it?

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5 Responses to “The Rhythms of the Woods”

  1. Serena Says:

    “Every reddish-gold leaf fluttering down, every loose branch crackling under my feet, every fallen tree has purpose.” What a beautiful truth. :)

  2. Phil Bolsta Says:

    Indeed, Serena. Thank you!

  3. Barbara Says:

    I echo Serena. An observation which says, “Phil’s got the nature ‘moves’ goin’ on now”! I love this time of year in the Yoop, when the leaves have fallen and ‘bushwalking’ allows me to see the deer and other creatures, instead of just hearing their movements and glimpsing a white tail-flag on occasion. Of course, it’s always a hunting season, so hunter orange becomes compulsory, just in case someone mistakes me for a prey animal. A casual encounter a few years ago with a group of young, rifle-bearing teens who handled these weapons like toys, reminded me that not all hunters have proper training and education. There they were. A group of four, one of whom just climbed up the hill and told us he was just ‘sighting [sic?] his gun, when actually, he was just shooting with abandon. No licenses. No hunter orange. Boys with ‘toys’…an accident waiting to happen.

  4. Barbara Says:

    Reminded me of the short story, ‘The Stone Boy,’ by Gina Berriault. Powerful story I used to have the ‘kids’ read/discuss.

  5. Phil Bolsta Says:

    Sounds chilling, Barbara. Thanks for the heads up and thanks for your nice message!

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