Kickass, the doorstop dog, reports that the keeper does not often issue direct orders, but an exception is made on the basis of a recent afternoon when he—the keeper, and Phyllis toured the green coulees of the Kickapoo River area. The order is this: Pick yourself up off the coronavirus floor, grab a sandwich or a few bucks for a local lunch, get in the car and head for the Driftless area of southwest Wisconsin. Forget political absurdity and personal threats, and follow the gracefully twisting roads over the green, green sea of summer at high tide.
It is simply magnificent.
Enclosed in your personal vehicle with family, you can take off the Covid mask and breathe deeply of a Nature that invites you to be a part of it, to sense it’s indifferent power over all things—including you, and to feel the pulsing renewal of life that now goes on behind the green leafy tapestry.
The Keeper’s order includes a pause at a Wildcat Mountain State Park overlook for a breathtaking view of the Kickapoo River far below as an occasional canoeist rounds a distant oxbow. A young Amish couple with their new baby shared this scenic spectacle with the keeper and Phyllis, and the new little family with straw hat and black skirt and swaddled baby seemed a powerful symbol of human inclusion in the impossibly green, renewing summer of 2020.
So there’s the keeper’s direct order: Get out into summer, along the Kickapoo or elsewhere. It will restore your soul and remind you that all things are cyclic.