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We need wild places.

After the commotion of cities and the demands of everyday life, wildness beckons.

For me, the wild offers restoration and peacefulness.

My reaction is physiological: I feel my heartbeat slow, my breathing becomes deeper. It’s physical: I can climb higher, walk longer, and try a more difficult path.

I use all my senses to hold this wild place in cell memory for the return to the city.

Cape Sebastian, Oregon. (Kathleen Kenna photo)

Cape Sebastian, Oregon. (Kathleen Kenna photo)

I’m always more clear-headed in the wild. I can separate my anxieties from what is true; I can still my mind here, without effort.

To be in the wild is to celebrate our spirituality. No one can stand at the edge of the continent and not pause to thank a higher power for this beauty.

My gratitude is deep for this pine forest, these secluded beaches, and this rocky headland.

To be here is to be closer to God.

At Cape Sebastian, I am looking across the Pacific, and wondering, with all this gratitude for natural majesty, why do we all do so much to harm it?

I’m grateful for this Oregon coast, and for everyone who works to protect its wildness.