Friday, August 20, 2010

losing myself in my mountains

the webs of which I am a part

a time in me loves to be alone in my mountains,
when I am not so webbed to others

in that great social dance of pulling and being pulled,
when decisions of what to do, where to go, what to eat and when,
are all made by committee,
within which each of us is near equal in seeing the way,
where and how to go a balancing of the assertive and the responsive,
the tugs on me and my tugs,
a give-and-take as complicated as can be,
our web moves forward,
none of us exactly satisfied
yet fulfilled deeply in a larger sense of who we are, together,

I like a few days within which I can imagine myself, for awhile,
only webbed to a natural world
that does its thing with me only as spectator,
my actions free as I feel the larger web around me,
and I move myself along trail & slopes & day
in ways I hope will open doors for me
to appreciate true the beauty the world creates despite us,
about which we seem to be the ones called upon to step out,
notice, and appreciate, as we get the wholeness nature expresses,

I write this down by the creek
after a thunderstorm has washed over us,
and the flow is loud and high
with an almost metallic tang to its smell,
only mildly brown, for above me,
the protected forest takes care of its soil,

I love my next few days of hiking
and losing myself in every world I find,
I also cannot forget how sad I am
for each tearing of the web as time has moved on,

I have been blessed with my grandchildren
for over two weeks together,
and my moments now feel the overlay
of memory after memory of moments with them,
with my sons and daughter-in-law and wife,
and, when I open myself to noticing,
all the friends and family
with whom I have made so many memories,

I need to lose myself in nature for awhile,
yet my heart finds itself longing to refind the connections,

on the Appalachian Trail I walk 5 miles and meet only 2 people,

flower, fungus, rock, cloud and view draw me out of myself,
yet even then I revisit self-doubts
and even use my neglected cell phone to make a call
so that the cabin I oversee can get the guttering it needs
to keep the screened porch from leaking,

my feet are on the ridge-line and still part of me feels the tugs
of those webs who are also me.

by Henry H. Walker
August 17, ’10

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