Into the Wild

Wild harmonies


Hélėne Grimbaud was labeled an uncontrollable, unmanageable and unpredictable child. Good for her. I think, some of these traits helped her to succeed as a classical pianist later in life. “Wild Harmonies” is an account of her upbringing in France, concerts all over the world, and her move to the US. In Florida of all places she would have her first encounter with a wolf that changed her life. Her life and work between wolves and music make this unconventional biography a worthwhile read. I can only imagine what a pleasure it must be to read her book in French. The English translation is stellar.

Seeing a wolf in the wild is an unforgettable experience. They are magnificent animals. Native American tribes recognized the wolf for its extreme devotion to its family, and  drew parallels between the society of a wolf pack  and that of a tribe. Also, the wolf’s superior and cooperative hunting skills made it the envy of many tribes. Unfortunately, the rest of the world attached an undeserved stigma to the wolf. It has been severely diminished in many of his previous hunting grounds in the Northern hemisphere. Russia and Canada have the largest populations of the Gray Wolf.

“The caribou feeds the wolf, but it is the wolf who keeps the caribou strong.”

Inuit proverb



3 thoughts on “Wild harmonies

  1. Pierre P. says:

    Very nice photo ! Here in France, we have some wolves coming from the Italian Alps, but there’s a lot of pressure coming from local farmers to keep the population small and under control. Such a pity when you think most French people would be the first to denounce the extinction of many wild animals in Africa/Asia, but they won’t make any effort for two hundred wolves and twenty bears (in the Pyrénées)…

    Thanks also for letting me know Hélène Grimbaud !

    • Thank you Pierre. I believe humans tend to look out for themselves first. Considering the greater good or the consequences in the future is an intellectual concept and not really in our nature. This has probably to do with our origin, living under constant threat from starvation, disease, and war.

      These times are over. We have conquered the world, in a sense, but we are still living in it and we are part of it. As such, we should behave accordingly. This is apparently difficult to grasp.

      It feels that we are currently experiencing world wide a step back, towards nationalism, isolation, and xenophobia.

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