The Falling of the Veil – Deer Hunting Journal Entry #2

The Falling of the Veil – Deer Hunting Journal Entry #2


This is the second entry of my 2016 deer hunting video journal. It has been an incredible rut for me so far for the 2016 deer hunting season and I hope you all enjoy this video. I wasn’t expecting it to turn into such a big project but then again, I never do with these type of things.

Here’s the voiceover:
I was 24 when I realized the wild was dying.
The epiphany came to me while deer hunting one October evening. Such epiphanies rarely seize a man of the morning time, I’ve found. There’s a frailty to morning light. It softens the hard edges of the world where the dew of night makes camp. Its angle radiates a white hue and illuminates the unnamed particles of vagabondage—the dregs of dreams—the frayed edges of night—both waltzing a final waltz. It glows like a lover’s breath and curls along each beam like baby-hair. During such moments, a poet can only sing.
October is spring within the fall here in Georgia. A deciduous cacophony sweeps the hollows. The vibrant yellows of Mountain Ash, Bitternut Hickory and Black Walnut harmonize in splendor with the subtle bronze shield of the American Beech and Sweet Birch. Fiery clashes from the Northern Red Oak and American Sycamore erupt and seem to disperse red flickering embers of the Red Maple, Black Cherry and Flowering Dogwood.
But evening light lands differently upon a man’s heart. The harsh angle does not bring with it a new day. Instead, it rides on a thin veil of dusk and as this veil drifts over the cacophony, the former colors begin to smear with one another in static noise. As night impedes, the observer is left looking at a muddy and mysterious scene, drained of its vibrancy. The wind through it whispers but two words: brevity and goodbye.
It was during one of these October evenings that I heard a similar whisper in my heart. The words formed and lingered like a hybrid of mist and smog—a clumsy juxtaposition composed of forest noise and the hum of distant highway traffic. From my tree near the mountaintop, far away, I could see the pulse of the city. Brake lights flickered between invisible tree branches. Occasional horn honks shot outward into the forest like futuristic arrows. Faintly, when the wind blew just right, I could make out the golden arches of the burger joint below.
As night arrived and I began gathering my equipment, I felt a weight inside me I’d not felt before. It was not tied to knowing I’d soon assume my position within the red pulse of civilization. No, I’d already come to terms with that epiphany at a younger age. This was different, subdued, like the impossible ideas that transcend the minds of children and twist them into adults or the gray and gritty smear between erosion lines. As I made my descent and the city was swallowed by the mountainside, I looked out across the drained lowlands of the Etowah River Valley and saw great running ghostly gray squares in the night that look barren and alien even from space.
As I pulled my truck out onto the road, as my eyes squinted into the headlights of oncoming cars, I realized that these are the evening days of wildness. Although the deer still fear our silhouette and our scent and the squirrel continue to bark at the cadence of our footfalls over dry leaves, I know in my heart that these creatures are static noise. They are echoes of a day when wildness could not be tamed. And they are caught, just as I am caught, somewhere in a dusky hue, where history and the present moment tear apart and become strangers to one another.
I still go to the woods. The wildest spot I find there is often in my mind, when I’m able to imagine the fleeting vision of how it all was before it all was not. Sometimes it’s a Cherokee in my periphery, kneeling near a log, his turkey feathers quietly shaking as he draws his bow. Other times it’s along the long lashes of a mother doe as her fawn nurses the last few drops from her before the leaves begin to change.
I haven’t stopped killing deer but I don’t take as many as I once did. Nowadays, I like being near deer more than anything. I think it’s because we share a common awareness. For one of us, it’s conscious, for the other, a raw flame of instinct. But for each of us it acts as a compass needle. It keeps us alive. It tells us when to run, when to stop. It tells us when to eat and when to rest. The needle of the doe sends her away from me. And my needle sends me after her. Sometimes it’s to kill. But most times, it’s only to witness a brief, muddy glimpse before the falling of the veil.

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  1. Amazing video Zach. Beautiful content and stunning editing.

  2. Beautiful.

  3. Thanks Zach….

  4. Relic Dirtyhands

    Fantastic Job Zach! Love this video!

  5. Wow, really beautiful! The words, the content and editing are on point. You've got my sub! 🙂

  6. Hoopenshiner Mom

    You sir are metal detecting, hunting, adventuring, Sturgill Simpson!

  7. I have listened to this over and over again and each time I listen to it, I get a deeper meaning behind it. I myself, could never kill a deer, but that is not to say I haven't lived upon the meat they provide, You have such a way and manner with your words, I am certain I will listen to this again and again. Have you ever pondered having any of your writings published…you must!

  8. I love you too son. I know what you mean. Making it big doesn't always mean getting the results from a multitude of folks, but touching the lives of those who can relate to and give others hope and know that life is full of adventure… one hour at a time…

  9. One day you will make it big; not because of the videos you produce or publish, but because of what you pen down is a "real-life" story that portrays the "real-life" author, whose heart speaks volumes, one word at a time…proud to call you my son…

  10. That was DEEP! Just got here via a shout out from the Hoover Boys. Think I'll stay…

  11. I think you managed to capture it.

  12. William B Tedrick

    Bravo! Comes forth into this world an artist of the forest.

  13. The Last Grownup in the Woods

    Your way with words is just…wow. And the editing matches the words just right. Nice work.

  14. Excellent Zach.

  15. Ditto…..perfect video as i finish my last sip of coffee and slip off into the woods….Thanks

  16. DDM Metal Detectives

    Great poetic story of the woods.

  17. Zach. ….
    As usual words fail me. I cannot think of anything to write in response to your beautiful, well written and what's more moving words.
    You always do this to me and I have a tear in my eyes. That was just so well read and a moving piece work our should I say art.
    Please keep videos like this coming they are just fantastic.
    P.S. I hope you notice my name had changed

  18. Very well done Zach! Kudos my friend, makes you think a lot sitting in a tree or on a hill side about who & what walked the trails less traveled! HH

  19. Amazing!

  20. Nomadic Adventures

    Zach that was fantastic, you have a great talent, I love these vids like this, amazingly stellar

  21. Nicely done. You and I seem a lot alike excepts these days I don't kill the deer. I hunt but with my eyes, I should take a camera with. Just never know what you'll come across. There was lots of mining and mills around my area. All sorts of great history. I love the woods, it seems to reclaim itself. You can build a homestead but as time goes by and if left alone, it will become woods again.

  22. Calvin's Corner72

    Man great stuff here but I hope the comment section has a dictionary in it. I have thought the same thoughts Man. I wonder what it was before we (Man) came to this land. Just wonderful Man. Your an artist and for one I am glad to have put my hand in you hand, No I'm Proud!!!!

  23. Heartbreaker Relics

    Beautiful just absolutely beautiful! That's all I can say. Keep it up young man.

  24. Fantastic! From those of us who lack the talent to express in words all that you just pinned, Thank you! I always enjoy the videos. Hope to see many more!!

  25. I'm not sure what I just watched. But I liked it

  26. well done,well done

  27. Excellent.

  28. Great stuff brother. The woods will do that to a man. One of the last peaceful places I can go. Keep the words coming.

  29. are a rare breed…

  30. lorisue utterback

    Well done again!

  31. You have a gift….and I have a dictionary…so we should get along just fine. All kidding aside, that was a nice piece of poetry. Thanks for sharing, Zach.

  32. Dirt fishin girls

    Phenomenal! Wow, beautifully done.

  33. New subscriber via a shout out from The Hoover Boys. Fantastic video!!! You should write this down and sell it to "Gray's Sporting Journal." I am a longtime subscriber and this would be a perfect piece for their magazine. Here is a link in case you have never heard of them they are located in Augusta Georgia.

  34. Zack another great one. Thank you so much for sharing your poetry and videos with us.

  35. well said my friend! that was really great.

  36. That was genius…keep creating….and thank you sharing it.

  37. simply amazing

  38. Beautiful video and Powerful words my friend. Truely artwork. Thank you for sharing it, Realy.

  39. Hunters Explorers

    Bravo amico ottimo video! saluti dall'Italia, Fausto.

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