There are woods around my house, but I am familiar with these woods. I got into my car and drove to an area with woods that I was not familiar with. I left my phone and camera in the car as I got out. I placed my shoes on the hood and left my purse in the floorboard. The only thing I took with me were the clothes on my body and the keys in my pocket. I was on a mission and did not want to be connected to the modern world. I wanted to see the world the way my ancestors had once done.
I entered the woods and instantly my breath was taken away. The morning sun was shining brightly above, its light filtering down through the leaves in sections of golden rays that bathed the plants below in warm and gentle light. The earth was cool and damp beneath my bare feet. A gentle wind seemed to caress my cheek as it blew my hair back, seemingly welcoming me into a secret and very well hidden world. The animals did not seem to mind my presence and paid me little mind. The birds continued to chirp happily while the rabbits continued to hop through the bushes.
I began to walk deeper into the dense woods and soon felt a strange sensation in my chest. There seemed to be a drum that I could not hear, but which could be felt by my heart. Soon this sensation began to spread to the rest of my body until I felt a slight tingle going from my head to my toes as if I was walking through one big speaker and feeling the vibrations surround my body. As I walked deeper I began to feel more and more calm with every step, my breath began to slow and I did not feel lost, though I did not know where I was going.
After a while more I found myself standing on the edge of a small clearing, a gently flowing stream trickling not far off. I walked over to it and sat down, placing my feet in the cool water. I watched the fish swim past me as if I wasn't even there as they continued on some unknown journey. I watched them for a minute before placing my hands behind my back. I leaned back, tilted my face towards the warm sun, and closed my eyes as yet another breeze seemed to caress my cheek. This place was very peaceful and very quiet, the exact kind of place I had been searching for my entire life.
Ten minutes had passed before I heard a rustling coming from the other side of the stream. I sat up and opened my eyes to see a gorgeous white wolf standing there. Our eyes connected and I felt a thump in my chest as if our souls had somehow merged. A minute passed as the wolf studied me before I heard a voice in my head. 'This place is a sacred one, home to many creatures. Your kind does not visit too often.' The wolf looked off into the distance for a moment before I heard the voice again, 'Everyone is welcome here, as long as they show respect for the plants and animals that call this place home. Should any harm come to anything here, and the responsible party will feel our wrath.' The wolf locked eyes with me again and I realized it was him speaking inside my head. He seemed to study me for a bit more before bowing his head and disappearing back into the woods.
Not long after the wolf left, I began hearing soft music flowing through the trees. It was not music by modern standards, but music of ancient origin. I closed my eyes again, stilled my breath...and listened. The woods that I had thought to be silent, now sung an ancient song...a song which I had been blind to all along. I remained there for the rest of the day, only leaving when it began to get dark. As I reached the edge of the woods I heard the rustling again. I turned to see the wolf standing there, watching me. Behind him stood deer, foxes, rabbits, and a few other creatures that called this place home. 'You will always be welcome here, should you feel the need to return. May our song live on in your heart.' The wolf bowed before leaving with the other animals. As I got in my car and prepared to leave, my shoes back on my feet, I heard a howl and couldn't help but smile.
As I drove home I could still feel the drumming in my chest and the vibrations on my skin, but I was not worried now. I had done what I had set out to do, I had seen the woods as my ancestors' once did. I had heard the song of the woods and felt the utter peace they bring to all who pay attention. Now, two things were clear to me. One, the wolf was the guardian of the forest. He was my brother and my friend, he spent his time taking care of the creatures who called the forest home and now...I was a part of that family. Two...I was connected, spiritually, physically, emotionally, and mentally, to the woods...and by extension, the creatures within it.
I had heard the song my ancestors' had spoken of. I felt the connection they had felt and now understood why they could not describe it. It is a very powerful connection that can only be understood by those that have felt it before. I was now as much a part of the woods as they were a part of me. My heart, the heart of the wolf, the heart of the creatures, and the heartbeat of the woods...they will all forever beat as one. I am bound, I am connected, and I am home.