If you had been sitting at the edge of the field, quietly going about the busy work of observing, you might have noticed her creep out from among the trees. You might have thought she was looking for something – food or water or a place that felt safe enough to rest. You might have even considered that she was looking for you, although you would have been certain that was a foolish thought to think.
But she would have stared at you so intently that you would have been forced to think it. You would have had to be amazed at the way her soft body could become so stiff. You would have had to be humbled by her presence.
If you had seen the fawn emerge from the woods, you would have felt lucky. You would have felt as though you were witnessing something truly great. You would have felt her eyes watching you as you watched her. You would have noticed the way she made herself look so still and calm, though you knew there was terror beneath. You would have admired that. You would have thought “that is no easy task.”
Because it would have made you think about your own life and body, so dependent upon one another, and fleeting. You would have thought about what people saw when they saw you. You would have wondered if there was anything to admire. You would have asked yourself if your fear had ever looked so brave.
You would have considered the way you are forever moving in and out of the dark woods in search of things. You would have realized this was courage. You would have understood in those few moments that there is no easy task, or easy body, or easy life. You would have recognized that there are only trees and fields and the creatures struggling to survive among them. You would have known everything is worth admiring. You would have been comforted by that thought.
And when the fawn finally took her eyes off of you, you would have questioned whether she had been forced to succumb to her fear or if she had found the strength to overcome it. You would have watched her run back into the woods and wondered whether it was away from something or towards it. You would have realized that none of this ultimately mattered.
Because what you would have found beautiful about her was not the direction she moved, but that she was moving, that she could be paralyzed by fear in one moment, and be dashing through the world in the next. If you had seen her, you would have loved her. You would have delighted in the way her starting and stopping so closely resembled your own.