Written for the closing week of Anake Outdoor School, 2013.
On Linne Doran land, the Otter-Pond,
beside Cottonwoods with heart-shaped leaves,
water-wood, and Cedars somber with
their overhanging eaves. “Look at the light
on the Cottonwoods,” the dancing-fire trees,
you speak from where we sit at sunset
smoking on the porch. Night breeze.
This is plenty seeing you like a human,
talking quiet, no pretense, no display.
“Did you see the Lagomorph
who went that way?” The same hand gesturing
toward the ferocious green of vernal mire
that instructs, that holds my bee-stung arm
in tender reassurance. “I have the gift
of tears,” I say. “My heart is tired.”
Someday, I’ll be sitting in full sun
and remembering that blanket of dusk:
the unnamable places, initiation,
re-welcoming, the whole in-between world
we could not have expected.
Animal voices from beyond the woodshed
and ravine, laughter down the path to where
we gather in Malalo for magic, wrapping the bundle,
burning, being seen.
I know you love this time of night,
the silhouettes of trees, the ones that tip their tops,
that spread their branches out like praise,
their differences of ways discernible from a distance,
one more lesson in vision, but there is
black sleep creeping in now,
flowers are closing, ferns keep unfurling
as they should, as is right in time,
in Nature’s time. But this is natural.
This cannot be planned. Active hearts are tired hearts,
dirt-time for elderhood. The way of the Scout
is to take no credit even where credit is due.
Respect, Honor and Love. The veil lifts.
Something more than what we signed up for
Image © Gentle J. Pine. All rights reserved.