While driving a rural road built on fill, a road straight through a wetlands, I passed two dead beavers. The flat tails identified them.
From the looks of it, they were recent kills. I saw blood and crows and vultures hadn’t yet picked them apart.
The first dead beaver shook me. The second one destroyed me. I started crying. There was no room to turn around or pull over and return them to the wetlands for a dignified decomposition.
In recent months, the beaver had become my totem animal. I read books about them. I wrote about beavers. I amassed a collection of at least 500 pieces of beaverwood. I collected beaver stuffed animals and figurines. I had become a beaver in mind, story and spirit. I evangelized on their behalf. I plotted to open a gallery displaying to their sculptures. I converted other to the Way of the Beaver.
As I drove away, I wondered if two dead beavers signified the end of the reign of beavers in my creative consciousness. Perhaps it even portended something dire.
I thought and thought. I drove along a river. I decided the reign wasn’t over; there was nothing portentous in this encounter. It was a call from my bucktoothed friends and artistic collaborators to keep beavering away at the writing, the collecting, the fort building with beaverwood, and take all things beaver to a higher level.
I heard the call.