Sunday, July 14, 2013



Photo: (c) Jamie K. Reaser

I have learned their language,
some of it,
low scolding screes and chip notes

“There is a snake in the berry thicket.”

I ask:

“What kind of snake?”

And go to take a look.

I determine the species and declare it,
as if they didn’t already know or
have their own way with details.
We discuss its length,
and intent.

I’m not sure why we discuss intent.  Perhaps,
we believe in surprises but simply need to confirm
that this snake has nothing
of surprise to offer:

It wants to crawl among the bramble canes,
upward, until it can dip its plated head into the
twiggy, leafy, so-much-effort-it-took-to-make-it cup
cradling eggs, maybe nestlings,
and flex its jaws and consume. Empty.

Sometimes I take the snake for a walk,
though I warn that it will return
and I may not be around to hear their calls
the next time. Or, maybe I’ll be distracted.

Sometimes I watch what I know will unfold,
unfold.  Does this make me a voyeur of sorts?
There are days to engage in this practice, I think:

To be there, fully present, with an ending, maybe a death,
without begging  or balking, to bring curiosity with you
as an offering of escort to the other world. I can do this.

But, sometimes, I simply turn and walk away, saying:

“I’m going to see if there are butterflies at the coneflowers,”

because, sometimes, I have to remind myself
that there are wild things playing in the sunlight.

© 2013-2018/Jamie K. Reaser
From "Coming Home: Learning to Actively Love this World"

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1 comment:

  1. So wise and beautiful, the mystery and poetry of life as it manifests in private worlds of needs met and endings to come.