There are things you cannot reach. But
you can reach out to them, all day long
I feel the need to move, to exist, with an excess of humility, in the face of … everything.
From the wreckage and rank heedlessness of the dominant types of human presence in the world, to the wild, affirmative exuberance of the birds singing outside. All of it tells me to go slow, to listen and look. It could also be some interior shifting of the aging me, and my increased attention to Mary Oliver, Joanna Macy, Rilke, Ishi.
Really, the birds are extraordinary right now. If I’m indoors, the constant trill and peep suggests that I’m missing something momentous out there. And they zoom around, chasing and challenging, flirting and flaunting, gathering and feeding. Only when I’m digging out huge swaths of ivy do I feel like I’m engaged in similarly rigorous activity, and they seem to treat me as another, huge and ungainly ground feeder at such times. But they certainly don’t mind if I sit still, either. And once in a while I notice they sit still, too. even the tiny hummingbirds sometimes sit on a branch just looking around. It’s strange to see such an active little bird sitting still.
Looking I mean not just standing around, but standing around
as though with your arms open
What I have to give these days is attention, and I’m giving it. I’m listening, in hopes that my understanding will increase. And also weaving, which is another gift of reciprocity. Weaving continues to feel very right. I wrote about the weaving - have a look.
Excerpts are from Mary Oliver’s Where Does the Temple Begin, Where Does it End? How often she speaks as if from my thoughts!