See the Wild in the Made

Susan Murphy

There is a kind of attentiveness that can be cultivated and deeply relished, and a whole secret life of the street that it brings to light. It gives to the human-made world almost the same kind of delight that the lover of the natural world (and I am also one of those) might take in lizard eggs, bird colonies, feathers, droppings, rocks, and lichens. It does not oppose the wild and the made worlds but conjoins them, finds their overlap and resonance, sees the wild in the made, pays to the rust stains on an old corrugated iron wall the same receptivity it gives to dewdrops delicately strung in a spider's web. It includes but goes beyond spotting and classifying.

From Susan Murphy’s “The secret life of the street,” Winter 2006