Every year I forget what a lapwing sounds like. Last night, walking Leonard after sunset I heard a familiar voice literally circling me. I spun around, following the direction of each call, to try to get a glimpse of the bird flying low to the ground: lapwing?
But I slowly realized it was an oystercatcher. They’re back.
The lapwing won’t be far behind.
This morning the sky is such a convincing blue, you’d swear there’d never be another day of white winds and sleet.
I am ready for a change of season. Even if it means clearing out the greenhouses and beginning again.
Not going in to the school to work these weeks has been slightly disorienting. I lose track of the days. The months, even. But I have managed to pack all of those concerns into a box and stick it in the corner of my headspace. I’ll get back to it. But for now, all is quiet. There’s no kicking from inside the box. No noise. I am hoping when I open it again all the drama will have sorted itself out. When I am ready to open it, I will dig around and pull out Hope first. And let her sit beside me while I sort through the rest.
I’ve been waiting for a nudge from the gut. A little sense of lack, a desire to “get back to it”. I should be missing my students by now. But not yet. A cup of tea, the tapping of the keyboard’s keys, the squawk of the crow out the window is enough for today. Again.
Leonard drops onto the rug in this tiny library and sighs. This is enough.
I am easing back into my old routines with yoga and meditation before writing. It’s still not easy. I keep thinking of Sisyphus getting that rock going. And of Jack and Jill and the frightening joy of tumbling down. When was the last time I lay in the grass and rolled down a hill?
Spun until I fell down?
Chewed on a dandelion?
Let an ant crawl on the back of my hand?
Shook sand out of my hair?
Yeah, all this “forest bathing” I do, and I am still just observing.
I watch and listen
as though being separate
from the world this way
were the safest thing to do
– this way to preserve a life