Tread Lightly

You’ve been searching a long time now.  Somewhere along the way,

you pause.  You begin to notice the intricacies of every texture,

the textures of every intricacy.

All the magic you overlooked becomes discernible.  How could you have missed it?

It is at once ordinary and extraordinary, astonishing and unremarkable,

poetic and prosaic.

Seeing this, you give up chasing after dragonflies

that vanish the moment you find them.

You give up the search, the quest, the chase, the pursuit.

Relief.  At the riverbank you allow yourself to rest.

Not Rip Van Winkle’s sleep of oblivion, but a deep rest in awareness.

Eventually you rise, stretch lavishly, yawn imperially.

Making your way along the path, you tread more lightly than ever,

beholding – no, absorbing – the wonder of life on earth,

as translated through human senses.

You separate the sounds, hearing each one in singularity

before listening to the unified whole of all the sounds combined.

You taste the watercress, the blackberry, the squash blossom, the herbs. 

And then you continue to make your way down this forest path

alongside the flowing river, treading as lightly as possible

until you discover the space between pleasant and unpleasant,

harmonious and discordant, thrill and disappointment.

Now you have moved beyond.  Beyond what?

Beyond the realm of opposites, the arena of duality.

Naturally there will be a return journey – you’re only human, after all.

But for now, you keep going, as joyfully as possible,

in a freedom born of simple astonishment,

with a recognition of the holy presence in all things,

at peace in the acceptance that any day now, up around

any bend, you might meet death upon the road.   

2 thoughts on “Tread Lightly

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