Again, I rose early and walked in shale gorges both smooth and jagged, by the wild water and evergreens. I moved through the day like an athlete though my feet are broken, my throat so sick of onions.
Again, I sense the presence of a bear, and wonder if that is your animal spirit – vast, warm, strong. Steam rises from a bowl of soup, the wind sways the treetops, and I long for company.
Again, I long to burn, a flare in a dark wet cavern. I long to illuminate, pluck at the beaded web, reach for a single strand of – not transcendence – something earthly, simple. Fill my rib cage ordinarily, break my back over the knee of witnessing the world.
Again, the whale descends, the tidal current pulls away. The microcosm of Us gravitates to center.
We touch silence with our collective identity, the Self that is linked to all things, the part that knows it’s not alone, that knows it is a splinter of consciousness, that knows it is born again each morning. It knows, even at its most alone, it is with all the world. It knows that while it lives it has the company of the living, and that when it dies, it will step straight into darkness with the lighted lamp of all who have gone before.
We touch silence, not because we are willing, but because we have opened. We touch it the way a fingertip makes contact with the surface of still water.
Then, the whale breaches. The tide rolls forth and breaks the silence, rushing over us. We are swallowed, again, by the macrocosm.
Over and over, we are digested in ways we cannot know.