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Because That Is Life

I swear I am not a hippie.

Translated, this means:

Spinning round and round
Holding hands
The whole world a blur
But you are standing.

Completely drenched
No rubber boots
Running inside us
Want to erupt from a shell

The wind..
An outdoor smell of your hair
I breathe as hard as I can
with my nose

Jump into puddles
With no boots on
Completely drenched…soaked
With no boots on

And I get a nosebleed
But I always stand up

And I get a nosebleed
But I always stand up


This morning, I did as I always do: I woke up, I had a cup, brushed my hair, put my clothes on and puttered around the house before making breakfast. My infant woke and I changed him. The rain slid down from the sky, drumming the piano keys of the woods in a song of new life. It’s a bit chilly, here lately but first thing in the morning, it renders a delightful bite to the air that’s brisk and cheerful.

I glance down to see my 7 year old’s seed tray is no longer just several squares of black dirt. Oh no, it’s punctuated with small green seedlings, lifting their tiny leaves up out of the muddy soil.

One of the downy woodpeckers flutters to the feeder, it’s got water droplets blinking, reflecting the light and it happily nibbles on a suet cake.

I wander back into the house, and it’s time to nurse the baby down for a nap. He snuggles close to me, wrapping his tiny fingers around mine and heaves the most full, happy sigh as he falls asleep.

I tell his brother of his new seedlings and he races out the door, into the rain and exclaims, “Holy crap! Wow!”  The dirt his seedlings are climbing up through is made of rotten produce and once held the corpse of a raccoon. Its skull is now bleach white and sits on top of my desk.

Shortly before my youngest was born, my best friend of 8 years lay in a basket of blankets, too weak to move, to stubborn to lay down all the way. She was waiting for her boy, Aidan (Sprog 2) to come see her. To pet her. For months, she’d struggle to hobble out and see him, but a growing 7 year old’s energy is no real match for the well earned tiredness of a 15 year old boston terrier. Yet, she’d still try and when she couldn’t, she’d bark, whine and howl at him until he would slow down for some moments- seemed like only a few moments of slowing down was all he could stand, and sit with her. He came to see her, to say goodbye. She waited until he did, and then, she lay near me, heaved a huge, huge sigh, and then she lay her grey mooshed muzzle down on her front paws for the very last time.

I had my hands on her, leaning on the basket and not all that differently than the rain spilling down on the earth right now, I cried. She abandoned herself to whatever lay beyond, I abandoned myself to the sorrow, the seed abandons itself to the mud, that which was- becoming that which is, the bird to the need for food, the child to the wonder and the earth continues to do its thing. Because that’s what it does. Everything abandons itself to something else. Aidan gave his time and energy to plant those seedlings and they will one day be what feeds his boundless energy. Probably dipped in ranch, if I had to hazard a guess.

And I’m sitting here, this morning, watching it all work together, and thinking about the rest of the world. The world so at odds with itself. The world that desperately desires someone to be angry at, someone to be afraid of. I do believe that’s a part of the same whole I am, but sometimes, I wish it were the toenail on the body: something I could cut off, something I could remove.

If there is one thing I have found, it’s that it’s very hard to convince someone who is content to do anything more than those things that make them content. However, it’s remarkably easy to get the angry and the fearful to do whatever they think may prevent that which they fear or rage against happening. There’s more freedom in abandon, more freedom in joy.

Patrick Henry said that Fear is the Passion Of Slaves- if you doubt that, turn on the news. Funny how people will allow that which they fear the most to push them to act in ways that will in fact: cause that very thing to happen. You know, pretty easy to be ready for “shit hitting the fan” if you’re the one hurling the turds, isn’t it?

As for me, I’d rather not. If I’m going to abandon myself to anything, I’m going to let it be the breeze through the trees, the rain, the tears, the laughter and the soil. I suppose that makes me simple, and the notion of being simple makes me smile.



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