Monday, August 23, 2010

At my desk

L.L. Barkat at Seedlings in Stone has posted an invitation today to join in On, In and Around Mondays.

Today, outside my window, the sun shines. I work quietly in my quiet house, animals sleeping in the room. Ellie, on the floor behind me, Marley in the chair beside my desk. Tranquility rests easily in this space where I drift into 'writer's mind', that place where I open myself up to the muse moving through me. That place where I do not force the words, but rather let them come to me.

Like life. I keep trying to force things to happen. Keep trying to make it work when all I need to do is be in the place I'm at and let life unfold. In its unfolding are the experiences I create.

When I believe life is tough, life rubs up against me. It builds up resistance, roadblocks, obstacles for me to toughen up against.

When I believe life is with me, for me, good for me, life opens up in greater and greater expansive circles looking for me to fill each moment with the wonder of where I am, what I'm about, what I'm up to.

Outside my window, across the street, a mountain ash is laden with red berries. The pine tree in our front yard is burdened with cones budding new needles. I wonder about the pine beetle infestation marching its way eastward. I wonder if it will find this one pine standing alone amidst willow and poplars. The devastation of the beetles is evident in the mountains to the west. Burnt ochre trees stand sullenly in the sun, their needles falling, falling to the ground. Great swathes of rust coloured trees, dead and dying, stand testament to the beetles onslaught.

Their passing through is not like fall where leaves turn and fall and return again in spring. The beetles' passing created devastation. Entire forests decimated. Falling timber dying before the axe can salvage mighty trunks that once stood up against time and wind and sleet and snow.

There is no salvation after the beetle. Only loss.

Like death. A friend died last week. A car accident. One moment he was of this world. The next he was gone. I wished I'd taken the time to visit when I'd had the chance. I wished we'd done that dinner we'd promised we would do.

A girlfriend emails. My father has passed away she tells me. His has been a long, slow passing. A long, slow seeping away of his mind. A long, slow ebbing out of his life force. And now he's gone. I am grateful I had a chance to visit with her last fall when I was in the east. I am grateful her father is out of that place he had drifted into where each breath robbed him of the will to live. Where each breath kept her tied to his demise in the long, slow passing away of time eating away at his life.

I call a friend who has been ominously silent the past few days. I know she's struggling. How are you? I ask. I got fired she tells me. She is resigned. They didn't treat her well. Not after fifteen years of loyalty and results. I can't be bothered to fight them, she says. It wouldn't be worth it. Let's go out for lunch, I say. No. I don't like lunch. I know what she's really saying is, I'm afraid to go out. Under stress, she burrows into her home, keeping herself protected from the world out there. Out there where bad things happen. I'll come and get you, I tell her. I'll think about it, she says.

I think about pine beetles burrowing into tree trunks, suffocating the roots, cutting off nourishment to the limbs and arms and needles.

Ebbs and flow. Life moving in and out and on. Passing by. Passing on. Passing over. Through and before.

I walk in beauty now, beauty lies before me, beauty lies above me behind and below me.

I hear the words echo through my mind, a melody from the past drifting into my mind.

Yes, I walk in beauty now. Each step a delicate balanced art of being in the present moment stepping from yesterday into now, leading to tomorrow. Each step a fragile thread of hope buoyed up by my belief, life is all we have. All we have to do to live it up is to live in the rapture of now, surrendering our fear that yesterday will be forever and tomorrow will never come.

Life is in this moment now where my fingers skim the keyboard, Ellie snuffles in her sleep and Marley lies curled up beside me. Life is in this moment where I breathe into being right here, right now.


Maureen said...

Lovely reflection of where you are.

L.L. Barkat said...

I did so like the part about the trees. I hold a special regard for them. They remind me of people. As they have you.

HisFireFly said...

I love knowing animals are about, sharing our space, living as we live...

M.L. Gallagher said...

Thanks everyone -- and I was laughing as I looked at the photos ... the cat bed is empty as the cat sleeps on a chair! :)

smart cat.

Sandra Heska King said...

"Burdened with cones budding new needles."

That phrase especially captured me. As we bear seeds in our burdens.

Beautiful writing.