|Photo Credit Mark Zeiger|
Sitting Quietly, Doing Nothing
I love rolling along under a fair wind. I love working our way against wind or tide. I love nosing into intricate, rocky labyrinths. I love being under way.
But as much or more, I love lying to anchor. For days. For weeks. For months. In some quiet pond, far from the threat of storm. Embraced by stone and soil and the deep, dark trees.
We bluster in, under sail or yuloh a-swash, command and answer-back disturbing the peace.
Stand-by the port anchor (Standing by, port anchor)! Let go the anchor (Anchor's away... SPLASH)! Anchor's on the bottom (On the bottom, aye!)! Make fast (Making fast)! DOINK! Dropping foresail! Whack-ack-ack-ack-huff! Drop the mizzen.. Overhaul the sheets. Raise the rudder and stow the boards. CLUNK, boom (wheeze)!
Our clamor stills, embarrassed by silence.
A bruised silence that holds its breath, waiting... so silent our very breath rasps at it. Our pulse resounds in combers of blood.
But then, the cautious peep of a wary bird. A beat. Another trills in answer. Water, its exact position as yet unknown, resumes its flow, chuckling to itself at the audacity of strangers.
Silence gives way to mere quiet.
And we sit a while and drink it in, speaking, if at all, in murmurs. A glass of wine to honor the setting sun; to ease the strain of muscle and mind that brought us to this place.
We watch those who live here return to their business. Shy at first, but emboldened by our lassitude, they sport and hunt and hide and run from danger – seizing their days and cracking the bones for the marrow. Caught up, one and all, in the same drama as we.
Later to bed and the pleasures thereof.
In the days to follow a book or three. Music made by hand or accepted as the gift of others. Dreams projected in pencil, spilling over the page. Idle banter or none. Caught up in ourselves, or reaching our thoughts to you, our friends, one by one.
Out and about, we come to know the surrounds. Which plants grow, and where. Who made which path, which hole, which midden.
And weaving through it all, the wood gathered, fires kindled and meals shared. Companionship and content in every chore, in every joy.
Sitting quietly, doing nothing, our lives, like the grass, grow of themselves.