Part of the Wild, Yet Not

Humans are not observers of an untouched beauty; we are present, involved, touched and touching, in a journey of reconnection between daily life and wilder earth.

In general, though most of us enjoy the idea that “the wild” somehow surrounds our neighborhoods, we tend to like our urban wildlife somewhat smaller, more predictable, and less carnivorous. We prefer that it have smaller teeth, or none at all. We have deliberately built orderly perimeters of physical and cultural civilization from which we can delight comfortably in the ideas of wilderness and wildness.

The Urban Bestiary: Encountering the Everyday Wild by Lyanda Lynn Haupt

From the introduction:

My intent was not to be all-inclusive, but rather to treat species that are common in most urban places and those that have a particular lesson for coexisting with wildlife that can be extrapolated to other species, including the many that are not directly considered here...nearly everyone reading this book will be able to say, “I wish she’d written about __________.” But my goal, my dream, actually, is that this is just the start of a huge, earthen bestiary, an invitation to wild intimacy, written daily by all of us, through attention to the creatures in our midst.

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