Thursday, October 23, 2014
Some times..it just happens. You might have a different name for it. But I call it Magic. I mean - if you suddenly came upon this sign? There is nothing else you can do. You follow the arrow! It's so delicious. I say it over again now and then, to myself. "Lost Nation". It's a narrow little road. It goes up hill. Around every corner. on the top of every crest, I am holding my breath. What will I see? What will I find? In a Lost Nation?
I don't know about the rest of the year. But in October the Lost Nation is made of gold. The bright reds and oranges are gone past. But the gold! As if old Midas has swept through. The Tamaracks. Golden trees. The only needle tree that turns color and loses its needles in the fall. The ferns. The sedge grass in the swampy places. The little birch leaves, dancing in the wind. The wild apples. All along the road are wild apple trees. Loaded with golden apples. We stop and pick one, eating it in the cold mist. It's sweet and juicy, and every bite has a savory tang that you will never get from a domestic apple.
We don't meet any cars. We don't see any people. We're all alone on the road to the Lost Nation. Is this is? Is this all there is? Just the wind, skirling through the treetops? Just the river, purling along beside us? Just the clouds, hanging low over the mountains? Just the mist keeping the wipers swishing across the glass?
Just an old barn and a few scattered out buildings, leaning forlornly into the wind? The road is rough, with pot holes and rocks and cracks. We joggle along, enchanted. We come upon a For Sale sign. Just sitting there. On a steep gully. With a dirt drive wandering out of sight. Almost, we miss it. " Can we back up?" I ask him. We can. It's the tiniest house we've ever seen. Half hidden by the birches. It's golden, too. I DO believe in magic!
No parking lot. Nothing but the peaceful green meadow surrounding it. The cheerful red door. The clean white steeple. The sparkling windows. The drifts of fallen leaves. The misty mountains in the distance. We read the sign.
We have found Lost Nation. It's right here. It's a winding road. It's thing of great, golden beauty. It's apples. Its the kiss of rain on our faces. It's a tiny house with a red chair. Its a little church in the valley. It's in our hearts, from now on.
Sunday, September 28, 2014
Everyone needs a listening point. A place where you can hear silence. A place where you can be still and know God. A place where you can hear when He speaks in a still, small voice. A place where you can hear the whisper of your own heart. Life is so noisy and busy, some times you can't hear any thing. So you go to your listening point.
I found mine a long time ago. I had permission from the owner. I would take my coffee and go listen. They called it Reflections at Turtle Cove. I called it Moonlight Cove. Long before they named it. Long before they built a house there and I couldn't go there anymore. It's still Moonlight Cove to me.
Because, you know, when you find your self some where on a full moon night. When the air is warm. When there is no wind. When there is not a ripple on the water. Only the huge moon above you, and the water is golden and there are no shadows and you can see the past and the future. Then you fall in love with that place. It will always be yours. Though you be far away, though you cannot go there. It will forever be in the very core of you.
I know why they called it Turtle Cove. I saw them there. All summer and spring and fall. Turtles. Big ones and wee baby ones and in between ones. They hung out there, like teenagers in a parking lot. Little fish darted there. Frogs boomed and caught unwary dragon flies. Dragon flies with iridescent wings. King fishers croaked from the trees.
In the mornings the water was gauzy with mist. Mist rising with the warmth of the sun. Mist hiding reality and making it swirl. Then the sun would slip up and the mist would rise, and there would be the shore line reflected in the mist and in the water. Three paintings, beauty tripled. Then the morning breeze would break up the painting. Pieces, like a jigsaw puzzle. Just before it disappeared.
The afternoon sun . Once I saw it turn the pickerel weed golden. Shimmering golden in the blue water. I reached out and picked one, but in my hand the beauty faded. Evening has mist, too. Eerie mist. Then the geese talk, but you can't see them. Only their voices float over the mist. Bats dart, and swallows.
Starry nights. When the sky is velvet and there is no moon. When the owls talk. And the coyotes call. Sometimes the wind whispers in the pine trees. Some times the rain dimples the water. Sometimes little wavelets splash, splash against the shore. Sometimes boys skinny dip on the other side of the point. I hear them running through the woods, and I turn my back on them. They never know I am there.
I tell the owner my adventures, and he loves them with me." You should have seen last night," I say. "The moon was so beautiful, reflected in the water." Later when he lives there, we have coffee and he says" You should see, Annie. Our Christmas tree is reflected in the water at night. It's beautiful." We laugh, he and I, because we both have this place in our hearts.
Now he can no longer be there. At Turtle Cove. The house is cleaned out. It will be sold. I go for one last tryst . When I know no one is there. I walk out to the listening point. It is fall. The trees are a blaze of glory. The water is still. The spot where I sit is shadowy. The old magic is still there. I can hear the silence. I can feel God. I can hear my heart. My heart sings a song. About moon light cove. About years gone by. About old friendships. About the times and the seasons. About reflections. Good byes are only reflections of hellos. Sadness is a reflection of joy. Here my heart will always find a listening point. Because it is here in my heart.
Thursday, September 11, 2014
Need I say more?
Wednesday, July 30, 2014
The day was hot, and humid, and as dusk fell, I walked down to the river. The water was fast and cold and milky , coming tumbling down from the snowy mountains. I stayed in the shadows of the bridge. Sitting on a rock. Feeling the cool dampness of the river swirl around me.
Then I saw him. Poised on the edge of the bridge. Ready to dive. The freedom of his spirit rose with his arms. His face was lit with the light of reckless joy. His hair flew out behind him as he arced through the dusk. Almost he was a bird, glossy and black and flying and free. My heart twisted, because I fear heights. but his friends laughed and shouted for him, and he came to the shore shaking the water out of his hair and eyes.
He came, then and stood in front of me. His eyes were black and undecipherable. We said no words. Only I knew then that my life had taken a new path. I would never see the world the same again. I don't know what he saw in my eyes. but he lifted his hand in a farewell salute and he melded into the dusky fir trees.
I sat for a long time there, in the star light. Cool and unafraid. Strangely lighthearted. Ready to go to the grown up world. Knowing I would be sure and free to be me.
Many times since, I have found crows feathers. Those who know me, know that I treasure them. They bring them to me, and watch me smile. And I run my fingers over them. And they are clean and smooth and silky. And I think about long ago and far away. And I wonder. Is he still reckless and free? Did some one tame him? How is it now, is that black silk tipped with white? Can he still fly? Are there still friends to shout and laugh with him? Where have his restless feet traveled?
I doesn't matter that I will never know. But I will listen to the crows when they talk in the tree tops. I will watch them, feathers iridescent in the sun light. I will save me a crows feather. For long ago, and far away.
Monday, June 9, 2014
The real Wall, in Washington, D.C. is of course, more imposing. Larger. Stiffer. A Capital City monument. Still and quiet, you feel the grandeur and the heaviness of its meaning. The people come to see it.
The Moving Wall. Well, it's moving. It has heart and compassion. It gets up and moves to the people in the small places. The people who will never get to Washington, D.C.. It comes to the people who know. The mothers, now little and old. The ones who shed their tears so many years ago. It comes to the old shakey fathers with walkers and canes. It comes to the friends who have never forgotten. It comes to the children who have heard only stories. The children who wondered what was behind all the silence. It comes to the slender, lovely teen age girls with daisies in their hair. It comes to slouching teen age boys who never had to know about being drafted. It reaches out to them.
It was late when we got there. Warm and humid. A three quarters moon hung above us, and the purple clouds scudded across the sky. We have been to the Moving Wall before. Each time it is just as startling. This was our life. This defined what we are today. When you turned eighteen, you got drafted. Lots of boys went to Vietnam for their senior trip. These names on the wall are our friends, our contemporaries. All these names are our lifetime. We saw them go. We saw them come back. No one was ever the same.
The staff at the wall are gentle and kind and helpful. Finding the name you are looking for. Seeming to know which ones need comfort and words and which ones need to be left alone. We have taken rubbings before, so now we zero in and find our place.
Now we just walk along that long black wall and we find the names. We reach up and trace them with our finger tips. All along the wall others have left tokens of love and memory. Pictures. Flowers. Poems. Flags. Beer cans. Cigarette packs. We watch those around us. Those men with the long grey pony tails. The big brawny ones with their Harley jackets. The ones still in uniform today. These are the ones who know.
He came walking slowly to where she was standing. She traced the name with her finger and looked at him. "Touch it," she says gently. "I don't know if I want to," he answers. His reluctance pours out from him. She turns, away from the raw emotion in his eyes." "It might be your only chance. Reach out and touch him." Her voice is breathless, annoyed, compassionate. His hand trembles. Slowly he reaches out. His hand is work worn. Carefully he traces the small letters. Once, twice, three times. He removes his hat and holds it over his heart, his head bowed. He is crying. Tears splash on his hat brim.
They walk away, down that long black wall, holding hands as though they were young lovers again. A church steeple stands shadowy in the back ground. The bell rings from the bell tower. Deep and solemn, it strikes the hour.
I have my stone in my pocket. The Jewish people don't leave flowers for death. Flowers are too fleet and fading. But as a sign of respect, when they leave a cemetery they leave a stone. Because a stone will always be there. Love and memories will be as that stone. I like that. I always leave a stone. A stone for all the soldiers. A stone for all the names. A mans lips move, but no sound comes.
"Speak our names in voices like thunder." the song says. "Touch our names with your hands, so we know you have not forgotten us." Some silence sounds louder than thunder. The lightness of a finger tip across etched granite can be felt around the world.
To whom ever is responsible for bringing the Wall to the American people,our heart felt thanks.
Thursday, May 22, 2014
Pear blossoms on the edge of the hill.
A stash of pots. Waiting their turn. Yes. Summer is coming to the Raggedy Garden. The sun comes shining early and the rains wash the winter away. The wind blows sweetly and the leaves dance. The grass turns green and the morning dew is a kiss. Tonight there was a rainbow, a perfect arch of colorflinging its promise across the sky. Come sit with me, and we can dream, and talk a little and smile, and sigh. For days to come and days gone by.