On This Umbilical Earth

Gratitude and I had an argument, then went walking together, that morning when I felt a kinship with those turtles sunning themselves on a log.

The wisdom of not being industrious truly belongs to them, but I picked up a strand of it as if by osmosis or magnetism.

To cast aside all that seems necessary at a given time – a choice not to be confused with squandering.

Given, as is all our time.  Every scrap of it a shining gift, a new blessing, another last chance to take up a little space, to take up some room

on this umbilical earth.

 

Three Heartbreaks

The tigers kept to the shade, turned away from the onlookers and fascination-creatures on two legs.  They looked out through tiger eyes, thinking tiger thoughts.  Swish went their tails, occasionally, swish.  Primal dignity.

The elephant knew what I was feeling.  Her mind was lucid, comprehending.  With a heart greater and stronger than my own, she understood why I kept looking away, yet accepted her life with a gentle patience that, in itself, elevated the woes of humanity to something transcendent of shimmering grace.

As for the lion, he locked eyes with me.  “Why did you come here today?” he seemed to ask.  “I don’t come to watch you sleep, to watch you clean meat from the bones given you.  Go on now, do what I cannot.  Go back.  Go home.”