The Yin and Yang

The art of something so majestic, yet so destructive.

A whirlwind of beautiful chaos, I’d say.

Today, as I lay upon my hammock, I listen to the chickens rise as the rooster’s sing without a single care in the world.

The familiar noises of the jungle are suddenly overrun by a hushed, foreign, slithering sound coming from beneath me. A noise so settle, so quiet, but so rare as to catch my ears even in the mist of the dense morning tunes of the jungle.

I glance beneath my hammock, my heart beginning to gallop, as a radiant green, four-foot Viper snake slithers right past my bare feet and towards the goat pen. In astonishment, I do whatever any logical, trained jungle survivor would do, and closely follow it (still with no boots on).

There I am, peering eye to eye with this mysterious creature, which is now perched upon the goat pen. Its long, thin tail drags on the ground, wraps around a janky, old post, and its slim body progressively thickens to support the weight of its frail, yet powerful head. He turns and looks at me in one smooth motion, his golden eyes piercing through my body, as if he were staring into my soul.

I stop and stare back, and it felt as though I were looking into the windows of the sun.

Bright, powerful, luring, and so, very dangerous.

Fatal, if there is any direct contact.

I flashback to one of my first days spent in the jungle, at 17 years old. Living in a treehouse at Punta Mona, without a single worry in mind. Nonalert, oblivious, and thoroughly happy at my odd assumptions of invincibility.

I was walking back to my room in the late night, doing everything I was specifically warned by the elders of the jungle what not to do. Being a rebellious teenager, my toes were completely exposed to the thick jungle grass, as I believed shoes never served a purpose. And, on top of that, instead of looking down, keeping an eye out for the deadly creatures that could possibly be slithering on the floor, I was caught in a daydream, looking up at the stars. Breathless I was; little did I know that beyond breathless is what I was soon to be.

Peering down was by chance but stepping over the snake was pure luck. I looked down just in time to catch a glimpse of a bright green Viper snake, slithering right between my legs as I conveniently missed it with my foot by several inches. Within mere seconds, it disappeared into the dark brush next to me, most likely hunting for a delicious frog.

 

What a powerful thing it is to have death so near to you, you can literally pinch it between your pinky toes.

As I now stare at this all too familiar, beautifully bone- chilling creature, the yin and yang of the jungle comes surging through me.

The good and the bad.

The beauty and the ugly.

The safe and the danger.

The exhilarating insanity of being within arms- length of something that is a little bit of everything.

That can be so beautiful, yet so destructive.

That can, within moments, slither delicately to me and end my life.

Yet instead chooses to comfortably, and curiously, watch me.

So, with the sun in my eyes, I admire this creature from a safe distance, allowing it to not harm me with its immeasurable heat, but rather shift me, with its un-denying beauty.

Because, like all things in this jungle, in this planet, and in this universe, there is good and bad within everything, and it is up to us whether to allow all things to sparkle, or to get harmed by interfering in the process.

What a wonderous world this is.

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