Posts tagged “loss

the sounds of echoes…and then….

There’s a sound that a pick-axe makes when it’s plunged into the earth and dragged back out again; it’s the sound of metal opening the history of our lives, slamming into our powdery souls with a thick ferocity of hefted weight and muscle and sinew and limb…a stretching of cloth and skin in the arc toward the heavens of the steel head and hardwood handle singing through the air…and the slight visceral grunt as it lands with that freighted slice and drive through soil and rock, echoes cleaving the dust and clay that is ourselves and then…

there’s a sound that a saw makes when its teeth rip through the fibers of wood and brush; it’s the sound of a serrated blade slicing into our fingers or hands, driving through the cells of meat and unto bone…fine or rusted edges of metal rending our woody flesh, tearing it neatly into pieces that we hone and fit and hammer back together into other forms that cover and shelter us against the elements and gods; we take it with our hands and break it into pieces that will warm us or feed us, sometimes with the muted, wet splaying of green wood that wouldn’t break cleanly…like joints pulled backwards against nature and form…or with the sharp echoes of cracking branches and bones that flee into time and then…

there’s a sound that a scythe makes when it passes through grass and the wheat of the field; it’s the sound of an icy razor lifted and throwing light back at the sun, of muscles on shoulders and hips swaying in a life-rhythm and a whisper through the air and a shhhhhh through the grass as cell membranes burst against the blade and green it in its passing, dust and skin and grass and stem, seed-heads swaying in the breeze of man and his motion, aloft in the sky and a shhhhhh to the ground, the echoes of sunshine and air falling on the riching earth and then…

there’s a sound that flesh makes when it tears in that moment of thrust and climb, of muscle pounding into a hallowed cave; it’s the sound of hinge-less doors opening beneath a fusing flood of life and stranded helices, recombinant forms and particles charging, of a new pulse rising in a hidden place, one cell beating and beating…becoming…that time draws forth as it rips again, that sacred fleshy vault, echoes of life and death in a moment’s strain…and then…

there’s a sound that a house makes when it no longer harbors life within; it’s the sound of a derelict wind stealing through empty window panes and hollow echoes fading into the oblivion of lost time and then, memories disappearing like vapors drawn, weak flashes in smiles and tears, images forming and fading as sunlight passes through dust motes hanging…and when the moon finds night-time corners…sliding feet on worn boards, oil from hands on banisters evaporating molecules at a time, riding the ether of ever and gone, echoes of laughter and pain, no longer anchored with heartbeats away…echoes no longer anchored with heartbeats away…and then….

***Photo used with permission by Gary D. Bolstad at Krikitarts.  The photograph was taken along the side of the road somewhere in Minnesota when Gary was returning home after a vacation in the woods.  I encourage you to visit Gary’s site to share in his beautiful photography that demonstrates his love and fascination with our natural world.

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Forgotten


Lost

A tiny hand and arm used to clutch me tightly, and then less so as the minutes passed by and by.  With my soft fur pressed against the little one’s flannel pajamas and fleece blanket, I could smell baby soap sometimes, and syrup, too, or the green of grass and the dusty rich gold and orange of fallen leaves…the rough and scrapey brown of tree bark on his little hands.  I could hear his soft breathing, his tiny lips moving around his thumb…or the tiny baby snort when he moved again and grabbed for me absently, blindly in his sleep….  And then the car stopped…and the door opened…and I tumbled out…and away…and away…

…and now I find the sun rising and setting with the sounds of passing machines of large and small, with hard winds and whistling bugs and the grit and grime of flying things…

…and I wonder where his soft hand is now…and his smells….and I wonder if he’ll ever come back…or if I’ll always be lost…

…on the road, somewhere…between here and there….


I don’t know what it’s called…

…but there’s definitely a “something” that I feel when leaving the forest and hills and trails on my weekend outings.  I would offer that it’s almost a tangible sadness, but that’s not precise enough, I don’t think.  There is a…I don’t know, maybe a separation occurring somewhere in my soul, my core, a literal leaving of something that speaks deeper than words, that moves, maybe, in a way that simply cannot be defined.  For the hours that I’m out there, the notion is essentially absent, I’m not worrying about leaving, not preoccupied with the loss that is around the eventual next ridge or hillside, I’m not thinking about it at all…but when that last draw has been passed or the last canyon crossed, or when I’ve come to the place in those long upward trails where my body is not responding to my mind’s bidding and jamming up the slopes with as much fervor as it did those hours ago and I decide that it’s time to rest for a bit and then turn around and head back, within that instant, or in one of the several that shortly follow that one, the sensation of a coming loss becomes real and my heart and mind know that all of the things I have so loved for the last however many hours will be shoved away for another week or so until I am out there again.  And no, it’s not that I “have” to go home…I am not dreading my return to family life and work and responsibilities and whatever else.  That’s not it at all.  I love and enjoy my family and my life and home and work and all of that…I’m not dreading what I am returning to, I’m immediately missing what I am in the act of leaving.  Yes, I am attached to those in my life whom I love…but I’m strangely attached, too, to whatever it is in those forests and hills, as well…those crazy-tall mountains that fill the eastern horizon with their canyons and draws and the rugged rocks and crags that adorn the mountain-sides, all the varieties of trees and bushes and groundcovers, the moss on the rocks and scrub oak, even the fallen and decaying leaves with their smell of sweet rot and life, mingling with the perfumes of new buds and leaves and spring flowers that brave the cold and wind on their bare hillside homes.  I don’t know what it is, really, but it’s something…it’s something that I’m attached to and I feel a genuine separation and loss when it’s time to leave.  Maybe it’s like leaving the peace and quiet of a beautiful sanctuary or temple and returning to a loud and profane world of city and cars and signs and electrical poles and streets and sidewalks and airplanes….  Whatever it is that draws me out there, I start to miss it before I’m gone.