April 8, 2013

The Witching Hour. ~ Kate Lomac-MacNair

In the rainforest during the early morning there is a changeover, a sequence of moments elegantly shifting through transformation, lingering amid predawn and postnight.

The shift transpires, quickly like flipping a switch yet remains as methodical as the change of a season. Life passes the baton of consciousness, wakefulness.

The witching hour is arriving and alone I sit, silently observing.

The nocturnal world is calming, settling in for an anticipated period of rest. Creatures of the night are returning to their nooks, bellies full, seeds spread, their day complete. Bats frantically flutter back to roosts, tarantulas’ retreat into stealth clay caverns, kinkajous curl into petite bawls of auburn fur winking golden lantern eyes into slumber. A nighthawk releases a final plea, his hopeful attempt to allure the eluding female.


Like images in mirage, nightlife descends back into jungle camouflage, hidden corners, and clandestine recesses, all below the safety of the canopy. No breeze shakes the leaves, the air is dense, chilled, like a soggy blanket thrown over the treetops.

The witching hour is here and alone I sit, silently observing.

Light, seemingly seeps like cold molasses from cracks and crevices on the dark horizon. Brightness is upon us, arriving before senses can grasp such evolution. A trogon whispers a gentle morning song.


Down in the valley, a MotMot replies. The early hour birds are shaking their feathers, preening their wings, waiting on the light. An eerie howl echoes through the rainforest basin, gently muffled by the tangle leaves, vines and heavy air. Monos leones, howler monkeys. The alpha male is perched on a high branch his troop nestled in the canopy around him. His roars starts low, like a growl, building with each breath and only reaching full crescendo when they begin to respond.

The primordial call and response, an intrinsic desire to announce the dawn. Kaleidoscopic clouds paint the sky in pink and purple pastels. Light spills over the mountain ridge, striking treetops in electric emerald and embracing the jungle with warmth. Bees, crickets, cicadas, thousands of insects join into an orchestra of pure buzz.

A synthesis of sound, light, energy and life; morning has broken.

The witching hour is passing and alone I sit, silently observing.

A small cabin rests, tucked below Mayo trees and flanked by heliconias. There is my nook, soft wool blanket on a large porch, a view to the valley below. A disheveled mat of curls smothers my head, remnants of night’s dream crease my face and hands wrap around a large mug of hot coffee. My eyes follow the erratic flight of a dazzling, green hummingbird, watching as it darts to and from nectar filled orchids. The loud flap of toucan’s wings lures my attention above and I cock my head to catch the last morning salute of a howler troop.

Closing my eyes, I inhale the morning; breathe in the jungle.

I am a foreigner, separate from this forest realm. Observer but not performer, an outsider, fortunate to be privy to such mysteries. I have no place among the maze of birds, insects, plants, trees, animals and earth. It is not my symbioses to possess. Like trying to claim the ocean, the sky, the wind, I know I cannot claim the jungle. Yet energy of the wilderness pierces my soul. It simultaneously calms and ignites me.  Observe. Believe. Listen. Tell others, it says, help them feel that this is worth protecting…

The witching hour is upon us and together we stand, no longer silent.


Living in the rainforest for over a decade has ignited a desire do my part in protecting our Earth’s resources and biodiversity. In November 2012, I attended a yoga training with the inspirational Seane Corn and the Off the Mat, Into the World® Team (OTM). One of the more powerful statements she said was, “When you find yourself in abundance, give back.” Those words planted a seed in my soul and in January I made the commitment to OTM 2013 Global Seva Challenge to raise $20,000 for the Amazon. OTM bridges yoga and sustainable activism to create social and environmental change. The non-profit inspires yogis to take their yoga off the mat and into the world. To hear more about my story or how you can get involved please check out the following link: https://otmseva.fundraise.com/kate-lomac-mac-nair.


Kate is a yogi, surfer, marine biologist, tree-hugger, whale-hugger, human-hugger, student and teacher alike. Cultivating balance in a life shared between Alaska and Costa Rica a piece of her heart remains in India but her true home is the ocean. An aficionada of all things green she swears she could subsist on kale and avocadoes and loves passing time in the garden. Kate adamantly adores alliterations and awkwardly attempts to add them in all applicable avenues. When not swimming with whales, hiking with her dog, or baking rosemary bread she is found exploring a new adventure, which at the present is discovering her voice through writing.




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Ed: Bryonie Wise


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