Now in this time of the epidemic, racism, mass shootings and threats of war, the first line of an Emily Dickinson poem speaks to me.
“A wounded deer leaps highest.”
The story I imagine from the above line fits with my upcoming novel I’ve been rewriting, Deer Xing, which I began in the early ’90s. A time that seems like forever and also yesterday.
My title evokes the image of a deer crossing a road at a deer warning sign. Its message is clear; drive carefully to save a deer.
The sign gives us humans driving our cars, RVs, trailers and trucks the chance to be present to what is possible and how carefully we can choose to live our lives. And how possible it is to change, to save the life of a deer, such a beautiful, gentle, quiet, vulnerable creature.
Both deer and sign inspire and uplift me to continue reworking my draft. As I edit the final section of my story, I experience deep silence, the same feeling I imagine in the eyes of a deer. And gratitude too.
“Every book is a world.” –Gabrielle Zevin.