Wednesday, November 13, 2019

...in the snow


Narrow is our vision to hold that it is the pleasant expressions of nature that hold the most treasure.  Narrow it is of us to wish her to share only those expressions that suit what we wish to feel – the warmth of summer on our face, the beauty of autumn in our eyes.  How can we believe these are the best of her offerings when the cold of winter ushers forth the birth of spring? 

Orange autumn leaves on crisp white snow. 

I am sitting in the cold writing these words just so I can be near her.  My fingers and toes falling victim to the temperature as I feel myself falling open to her wisdom, as I feel the fog clearing from my eyes, my heart.  She invited me to sit down beside her, glorified, humbled, resurrected. 



With gratitude,
Joanna

Sunday, March 31, 2019

because here I am home


I heard their strong bugle and watched as the sandhill cranes landed on the soggy earth; earth recently revealed after months of frozen slumber.  On graceful legs they moved in unison searching the ridges and crevices of the ground for sustenance. 

Above me, clouds moved swiftly like the birds, constant and unchanging in their flow. 

On a distant slope four deer emerged from the tree line and crossed the field together at soft angles until they disappeared behind more distant trees. 

Almost beyond sight the sandhills continued to troll the earth together. 

Rain began to fall, and I heard its drops land on the roof of my car and on the soft ground outside my open window, and I heard the calls of secluded songbirds sound between them. 

I backed my car from bare road onto the paved one, hoping to prevent my tires from becoming stuck in the increasing softness of the soft earth. 

And as I turned to pull away from the view that grew me whole again, seeing it recede in my rear view mirror I knew why the presence of nature, even as found in patchy sections of tilled up farmland has always been my equanimity. 

Because outside was safer than inside, because peace is knowing your place among everything else.  Because here, I am not wrong or right, I carry no judgement or praise, no failure or success, because nature balances nature.  Because here I am not the scale, but a weight in the balance of all things.

Because here I am me and I am nothing.  Because here I am home. 




With gratitude,
Joanna

Monday, February 25, 2019

I have long suspected...




I have long suspected that there is much more to see. 

Winter, my nemesis, hangs in the air and hardens the earth, it strips the trees and plays hide and seek with the sun. 

Winter, I count the days to your waning and my freedom.  But my scoffing has made me suspicious that you may possess a magic I am blind to see.  I have come to suspect it is possible that I am missing your wonder – blinded through my efforts to look beyond you.

I have worn the mask in your name.

I should venture into you, but I am uncomfortable.  I should venture outside of myself, but I am uncomfortable. 

I was given snowshoes in January.  For most of your season you have provided too much snow for me to use them, snow that fell on the wrong day of my week, frozen air rushing at its heels.  This week I answered your invitation.  I found myself in a park with a friend walking the banks of a river that I have not visited, even in the heat.  I was warm laboring across the frozen ground.  Everything around us was still.  We encountered only evidence that others had crossed before us, their tracks sealed in the crunchy white surface. 

Here it was.  Ice and water and wood and tan prairie grasses and no sound at all.  The magic I had come to wonder at. 

It was here after all, here, while I sat on the other side of closed windows, scolding.  A private world in plain sight that only those brave or insightful enough dare to see – the lucky ones.  I count myself lucky this week.  Put on shoes and go.



With gratitude,
Joanna