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This is hunting

“Other than family and close friends, this is what I love and had made me who I am.” – Scott Smathers, Nebraska Sportsmen’s Foundation

When Scott Smathers’ social post came in front of me, it resonated. He’d shared a hunting poem that has been circulating on Facebook since at least 2018, but the original author has not been tagged in those shares.

However, the author’s words are worth reading and sharing, and that’s why I share them below.  Because this is hunting, and it’s why I hunt, too.  GW

This is hunting

Author: Unknown

This is hunting.

It will break your heart.

You will go days without getting so much as a shot at an animal.

You will miss.

You will see garbage in the bush, and have to pick it up.

You will wound something one day, and it will make you cry.

This is hunting.

It will teach you life lessons.

You will learn that one more minute can make all the difference.

You will learn that life doesn’t care…the weather warms up anyways, the wind changes direction, and all you can do is work with it.

You will learn patience and determination.

This is hunting.

It will inspire you.

You will see a mother and her baby, and your heart will swell.

You will be humbled by that bull elk screaming at you, less than 10 yards away.

You will see the beauty of dawn.

You will learn the feeling of being prey.

You will see things so beautiful, others seem dull in comparison.

You will speak to another species.

This is hunting.

It will make you vulnerable.

You might cry over the animals you shoot.

You might make mistakes and fret over the what ifs.

You will face your own worst enemy in the bush: yourself.

You will have to walk through the dark, basically, blind, deaf and dumb.

You will learn the bittersweet feeling of letting an animal live, or choosing to kill one.

You will learn the important balance of life and death.

This is hunting.

You will become… you.

You will learn passion.

Grit.

Strength.

Emotion.

Independence.

Determination.

Empathy.

Silence.

Peace.

This is hunting.

It is where you will learn your most valuable lessons.

It is where you will make your best memories.

It is where you will cry, laugh, and love.

It is where you learn to be still and be quiet.

It is what you will devote your life to, and never regret it.

It is important.

About greg wagner

A native of Gretna, NE, a graduate of Gretna High School and Bellevue University, Greg Wagner currently serves as the Public Information Officer and Manager for the Nebraska Game and Parks Commission's Service Center in Omaha. On a weekly basis, Wagner can be heard on a number of radio stations, seen on local television in Omaha, and on social media channels, creatively conveying natural resource conservation messages as well as promoting outdoor activities and destinations in Nebraska. Wagner, whose career at Game and Parks began in 1979, walks, talks, lives, breathes and blogs about Nebraska’s outdoors. He grew up in rural Gretna, building forts in the woods, hunting, fishing, collecting leaves, and generally thriving on constant outdoor activity. One of the primary goals of his blog is to get people, especially young ones, to have fun and spend time outside!

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