Danger signs

Black arches up against the pale winter sky, trees stripped bare of leaves standing silently in the windless woods. Black as sin against the purity of Holiness.
Sweat trickles down my back under down parka, and my steps are whispering Danger as I trudge through the drifts down to the water's edge.
The music thunders in my ears against the silence of this glen. "Cold is the water, it freezes your already cold mind, already cold, cold mind; death is at your doorstep, and it will steal your innocence, but it will not steal your substance." (Mumford & Sons, Timshel) Thin ice, open water.
I watch the ducks in the slushy water, see their footprints on the thin ice. I am at the water's edge, where choice are made. I sit down in the snow, letting the cold draw my mind back from the river's current and to life. Breathe in, breathe out.

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Hours later, I am driving on slippery roads by another river. The truck fishtails around a curve, and I think, "No one would know." I put both hands on the steering wheel, grip so hard my knuckles are white, and by the will given me pull myself out of the river again and back onto the path before me.
A great brush swept smooth the mind, sweeping across it moving branches, children's voices, the shuffle of feet, people passing, humming traffic, rising and falling. Down, down to sink into the plumes and feathers of sleep, sink, and be muffled over. (Mrs. Dalloway, Virginia Woolf)
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The farm I am headed to glows bright with lights, and I shudder at cacophony of welcomes and rush upstairs to a quiet room no bigger than my bedroom closet. Slowly I unpack. Clothes. Toothbrush. A tall stack of books. Computer. Camera. So I trade prison for prison and bind my mind with iron bars as I try to let peace seep in through the gaps.

The next day is bright and windy, cold. I rush out in my pajamas for a walk. Steps beat hurriedly on the packed snow, and shout anxious, anxious, anxious. But the hands shake less, stuffed in pockets. The head slowly lifts to the light. The breath comes more slowly. I have survived the morning's assault.
The dog always walks with, several bounds ahead, sniffing, smiling, cooling himself in the snow. Occasionally he looks back to check on me. Dogs have a sense for the broken. They tend. Beast and the broken in some silent union know the truth.
I wake with a shudder, shake off the latest nightmare. The window glows pink, and I hear just a whisper, that whisper I've been waiting days to hear. I am here. So glows the sunrise, sure and steady, up and around the curve of the earth and down again, plunging us into night. For all mornings of all time, it shall be so. Somehow, in the concreteness of this rhythm, I anchor.
Such are the visions which ceaselessly float up, pace beside, put their faces in front of the actual thing; often overpowering the solitary traveler and taking away from him the sense of the earth, the wish to return, and giving him for substitute a general peace, as if all this fever of living were simplicity itself; and myriads of things merged in one thing; and this figure, made of sky and branches as it is, had risen from the troubled sea as a shape might be sucked up out of the waves to shower down from her magnificent hands compassion, comprehension, absolution. Let me walk on to this great figure, who will, with a toss of her head, mount me on her streamers and let me blow to nothingness with all the rest. (Mrs. Dalloway)


Thoughts from my week of rest at the farm
missing family
seeking sanity

Pray I might find peace?








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