Book: Dreaming of Animals

Living in Montana forces us to notice and observe animals, both wild and domesticated, in ways that are often overlooked by city-dwellers. On any given morning there are at least two Golden Retrievers parked outside the Leaf and Bean, and no backcountry ski day is complete without our four-legged furry friends there enjoying the powder with us. For us, bears, wolves, eagles, mountain lions, and other wild creatures are not novelties safely viewed through the protective glass cages of a zoo; rather, they are part of our environment, sharing the earth, sharing their home, with us. Local author Valerie Harms, in her new book Dreaming of Animals, smartly links all animals (domestic, wild, and human: “ultimate” animal) to our collective home, the earth, creating an indelible sense of community. The book delves into the lives of many animals and documents our relationship and connections to them, revealing that animals are not merely accessories to be pushed to the periphery by technology and the advancement of a single species. By being more observant and aware of the intricate circle of life and death that we share not only with the earth but with all of the animals that call Earth home, we more fully realize how detrimental our indifference toward animals can be. The book also shows how to work with our dreams and dialogues to create a larger awareness between self and world.