|Pile of rocks in the middle of my favorite meadow.|
Over the tops of the willows that line the creek bank I can see a third field with rows upon rows of old corn stubble converging to a point at one corner of the woods. I spy a red-winged blackbird clinging to the brown spike of a cattail. It sways slightly in the wind and I hear it singing, “Here I am, here I am, oh mine, this one’s mine.”
Over my head two geese wing their way through the too-blue sky, their harsh cries echoing down to me like falling leaves. Farther on, a red-tailed hawk sits on a branch high above me and watches me watching it. I climb into the lower branches of a sturdy tree and look down as the hawk does. My view of the earth changes again and so do my thoughts. With my feet ground-anchored and my eyes looking up I contemplated flight. Standing shakily on a tree limb looking down, I think of falling.
Last year’s leaves form a patterned carpet, and the sky is bracketed by tree branches sketched in sepia. Safely back on the ground I search for a soft dry place to lie down, and discover a hollow. I snuggle in and the whole world becomes suddenly smaller to my eyes, encompassed by leaf covered banks and tree trunks and thick branches that allow only tiny glimpses of the sky. Here where my view is limited, I can let my imagination soar. When I was a child, this came easier. I was less reluctant to let go of my rational mind, more able to move unrestricted through the worlds inside my head. I could be the hawk soaring above and the girl on the ground and know them both from my protected place.
I have learned to acknowledge that while all things change, they stay the same. The wind still blows, even if I cannot feel it in the hollow. The sky changes from blue to smoke to dusk. At the end of today tomorrow waits, and tomorrow I will see everything differently.