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I am UmberDove.

And by that, I mean an artist.  One who hears stories in the wind, who paints because it is what her soul tells her to do, who smiths because the muse moves through her fingertips, who loves nothing more than the promise of an unexplored trail, the sound of the ocean in her ears, and scent of a serious cup of coffee.




I stride over these steep mountains with a small flock of birds winging in my hair, circling my head, securely riding my shoulder.  

No one ever said the life of a mountaineer would be easy, and I never asked for a level path.  But these last few days, I've had to climb on all four, the footing has been shaky, and the smallest stones have threatened my progress.  When I've run out of food, these birds have brought sustenance to me.  When I've been tempted to throw my bags down and wait out the storm, they've shown me a steady path.  Solitude they've respected, but silence was never a barrier.
The phoenix breathed trust to me, in me, rekindling that flame of self-belief.  
The raven cried comfort, in her beautiful guttural song, "I too am here, and we are not lost." The owl with the bright yellow plumes rode close and quiet, but firm in her support.  
The humming bird asked, in her silvery song, and that was enough.  
The chirpy little shorebird, always clear to my soul, reminded me of my purpose, reminded me how to laugh.

And from the spindly branches of the birch to the deep burgundy buds of the cherry blossoms, a host of robins, starlings, and chickadees trill together in lilting chords:
Winter, the great cleanser, the great quiet, the season of silence and struggle, is passing
And Spring, our beloved Spring is coming, riding the breeze from the East
So look up.
Stop thinking so hard.
Give thanks.

And now as I sit here today, I feel hope flooding though my limbs.  I have crested this precipice. And the scales are slowly falling from my eyes.  
We're going to make it.

Please remind me when I forget.
- Umber