Each morning around this time of year, the point at which the Sun rises over the horizon tracks further and further North. As this happens, the are fewer and fewer bird songs when I find myself out on the back deck sitting. Since the time that I go out is based on clock time and not the actual cycles of the Earth what seems like the same time for me every morning is actually earlier and earlier for my creature cousins who's lives are connected to something far older than my culture's clock. So as the Sun rises later and later, they sleep in longer and longer.
This gets me thinking about my culture's mythology that teaches me how hard and long my creature cousins labor to “survive in the wild.” These stories of constant toil and suffering aren't supported by my experience. When I am getting up in the darkness because the clock tells me it is six in the morning, I know my creature cousins are still sleeping because their calls don't greet me when I get outside. I know they are sleeping in until the Sun comes up and warms things a bit. When I'm working into the darkness because the clock tells me the day has not yet over, by the time I get outside to end my day my creature cousins are already in bed avoiding the cold of the nighttime. I sit alone in the back deck, accompanied only by the vastness of space unfolding above my head.
Today, I will be paying attention to the effects cultural ideas have on how I think about my life, and the choices I make to comply with these ideas (or not).