Sometimes I pretend that I live in a tribe. In the early morning I wake up in my hut made of mud and branches and woven leaves and stretch my arms up into the heavens. I stretch until it takes my breath and I turn my face upward towards the bright sun. Our life giver. Provider.
All of our huts are in one giant circle and in the center is a big bond fire that we light at dusk. During the day we spend time gathering fruits and mushrooms and forest plants, and some fish in the nearby stream and shoot arrows way up into the sky towards something to eat. We only take what we need. And we use everything. Our tribe knows nothing about packaged meats or grocery stores or big, tall buildings made up of metal. We have heard stories from our ancestors, but none of us really believe that people once lived that way.
The witch doctor paints our faces with red clay and children run past us, beating their chests and screaming like little spider monkey's. We stand in the cool water and splash our faces and clean our clothes. We pick out tiny little pebbles and make necklaces and earrings. Some weave baskets while others make headbands out of wild flowers.
We are encompassed in the forest and the only ones who enter the tribe are those who want to be there. Who have forgotten the complexities of prescription medications and hair dye. Who realize that nobody ever really wins in a war. And that all anyone ever wants in this life is love.
At dusk we light the fire and cook our meal. We all share it. We cuddle up around in a cirle and my child is on your lap and yours is playing with my hair, because they are their own people and don't really belong to us anyway. We tell stories and laugh and play. We are a family, all different yet mostly the same.
When the ambers dye down and it becomes so dark that you cannot even see your hands in front of you, we retreat to our huts. We sleep on hammocks and look up at the sky. The moon is so big that you can see the Man in it, if you just look close enough. And the sky is so clear that if you reach out, you can almost touch the stars.
We thank the Earth for all that it has provided, and fall asleep to a cool wind and the sound of crickets and owels and the slow steady pace of the stream beside us. We sleep knowing that we are safe, that we are loved, and that we are at one with eachother.