“Kids are so very good at still being shape-shifters, and shifting into feathers and fur. They still understand that we are connected to everything in this world, and that we are part of an incredibly intricate woven web of life and creatures.” – Cornelia Funke
With the warmer weather (sort of) hitting my neck of the woods, I’ve been lucky enough to spend some more time writing in the forest. Typically, I take my notebook and a pen, some snacks, and my trusty hiking boots and let myself have an afternoon of just simply wandering through the forest trails. Thoreau called this sort of walking sauntering, and as I’ve gotten older – nostalgia alert – I’ve really noticed just how important this aimless wilderness time really is to me. I can’t seem to stay creative without it! Staying indoors can be comforting, especially during the joys of the Great Canadian Winter, but it’s only once spring loosens up the world again that I notice just how much I’ve missed the freedom of fresh air, mud, and butterflies. Sometimes I’m even lucky enough to meet bald eagles, who are nice enough to pose regally for a picture!
I think children especially need this time, and it’s no surprise that animals and nature feature so heavily in children’s literature. Check out this video to hear author-illustrator Cornelia Funke speak about the need for wilderness in children’s lives. Clearly, Cornelia is amazing and I wish I could join her in the woods to pick her brain like the author-fangirl I am.
- For more inspiration, check out this cool op-ed piece, A Child’s Wild Kingdom by Jon Mooallem
- Terri Windling’s blog has been a constant source of inspiration for me – including today’s post featuring the video I’ve borrowed.
- The book WHY THE WILD THINGS ARE: ANIMALS IN THE LIVES OF CHILDREN is a fascinating read if this sort of thing floats your boat!
- Richard Louv’s book LAST CHILD IN THE WOODS is another great read, focusing on the importance of nature in child development.
Happy Trails to you!