Natural Dreamwork with Mary Jo


I was reading an archived newspaper article* by Ron Gosnell, speaking about the beauty and resilience of old fence posts found around Colorado that got me to thinking about how we, in our capacity to stand in the fires that burn through our lives, can become stronger, our hearts more resilient. 
Joe and I love living in the mountains where silence has a sound. We hike, walk horse trails and especially love to bushwhack, meandering through the woods hoping to discover an owl, a bird’s nest, a snowshoe rabbit, a coyote eyeing us from a distance. One time as we were making our way back home, we passed a rock cairn we had just built to mark our way. There was a fresh pile of bear scat on the cairn!  Believe me, we both stood up straight and fast and checked our surroundings! And most recently a mountain lion cache and incredible pictures from our motin camera capturing this majestic animal. 
Every so often, even in the deep woods, we run across old barbed-wire fence posts, known as pitch posts, unique relics from long gone ranches.  In the days before there was a concerted effort to suppress fires, fires started by lightning and Native Americans were common and allowed to burn. Frequent fires meant that trees were often injured but not destroyed. A tree exposed to many fires accumulates high concentrations of pitch…all the way from its bark to its heartwood center.  These pitchy trees were valued for the strength they provided along a fence line. That’s why when most posts from a fence line have long deteriorated, we can still come upon the exquisite relic of a pitch post. 
We can think of those people we have known throughout our lives, who are like these pitch posts. Friends and loved ones, supportive characters in our dreams, people we respect, who have had the resilience to stand in the fires of their lives…and instead of being destroyed were made both stronger and more tender…more resilient and kinder by the burning fires…those whose tender heartwood remained intact and undiminished. They are like the pitch posts that Joe and I come upon in the woods, “those pretty, old pitch posts, painted with moss and lichens, wrapped with generations of barbed-wire and hammered with rusty spikes.” Whether the pitch post or the person, we both recognize that we are in the presence of something durable and resilient…all the way through…starting from their heartwood center.

*Barbed-wire Pitch Posts Preserve Forest History 
by Ron Gosnell (from The Trail Gazette, 05.06.2010)

Mary Jo Heyen is a certified Natural Dreamwork Practitioner working with clients throughout the country and abroad in person, phone or Skype. Learn more about her work with dreams at