Sunday, July 19, 2009

Risk


On a very long walk
I come to this swampy little marsh
this marshy little swamp
peaceful and dreamy
in the dappled sunlight 
and I fold myself
onto the wooden bench 
and feel thankful for the thoughtful person
who placed it there 
just for this purpose
and I rest.

The wind rushes through 
the tall green fronds of the cattails
whispering secrets on its way
to somewhere else.
The ferns and trees 
and low lying bushes hold still
when the wind goes away
just being themselves 
in the air and the sunlight
not hurrying or worrying 
or looking for answers
or how or where 
they should go next
and not trying to grow
any faster than they can.
They're just being 
what they are,
you know,
just growing where they're planted. 

And I try, I really try
to just be, 
just for that moment
to just be 
but everything in me 
wants to make something happen
make a difference in the world
to matter in some way
and I watch the clouds far off
and I want to be where they are
away over there and not here
and for just that moment
as I rest and weep on the 
sun-dappled bench 
the only way I can think of 
to just be is

to wade into this swamp
to risk the scratch of the branches
against my thighs 
and the mud oozing into my sneakers 
and tickling my pink-tipped toes
and the feel of the green slime 
cool against my chest and under my arms 
and the microscopic bits of butterfly wings
that will land on my eyelids 
and the sparkly fairy dust 
sprinkled on my cheeks
because I do believe in fairies
and the feel, maybe, of a frogs little toes
against my earlobes
and the feel of that slimy slick bottom
when I push my hands deep beneath 
the surface of the water 
to grab handfuls of mud
and slather it into my hair like shampoo 
and take big deep cleansing breaths
of the cool greeny-blue air
and then I imagine 
what it would feel like
to float on the surface 
of that dark water
all covered in earth
and I know how it would feel
to just be. 

But I don't risk it.
I don't risk any of it.
I stay safely on the bench
in the sun-dappled shade
and only imagine how 
it would feel to just float
to just be
and its not because I'll ruin 
my sneakers
or look like a crazy person
on the walk back home
and not because that 
slimy mud would be impossible 
to get out of my hair
but because,
well, because...

because of the bugs.


July 19, 2009

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