"It's as if a great bird lives inside the stone of our days and since no sculptor can free it, it has to wait for the elements to wear us down, till it is free to fly." Mark Nepo

Monday, August 2, 2010

Slack Water

Early morning whispered possibilities, turnings, changes in a gentle voice. The sun up but hidden, offered light only from a palette of grays. Fog filled the air, muting the bright summer colors, damping and dampening everything. As I watched hummingbirds dart in and out of the bee balm, I had a sense of being underwater.

Verbs generally associated with beings of sky and earth were replaced in this misty time by words of the water. Birds don't seem to fly, soar, and flit so much as swim, float, and paddle. What fills my lungs is so moist it seems like my body is able to take oxygen directly from the water. Schools of starlings dip and whirl in eddies of their own making.

The buddleia spikes, fuschia aglow in the fog, become anemone arms pulled by the tide toward unseen sustenance.

In this ocean world I ponder the tides. There is neither the sense of ebb nor flood, push nor pull. I am in slack water, that time of no tidal current, just before it turns. The time of breathing that is not exhale and not inhale. Pure stillness.

And in that stillness I hear the song of a season ripe for change. Summer no longer explosive and lush, beginning to lose its uninhibited glory; fall waiting patiently for her turn in the coolness of the mists. Change is promised and inevitable. But in this singular moment there is nothing but knowing. I wonder how many of these magical pauses I've missed over the years. I offer a prayer of gratitude that I'm not missing this one.

After a year of ebb tide in which hidden treasures and bodies alike were exposed by retreating waves, I sit in the slack. Vulnerable. Exposed. Hopeful. Ready for the richness of renewal that will be delivered by new waters flooding their way home. The tide is ready to turn, urgency building even in this still space. Ready.


Jerri said...


How wonderful to be ready and willing. And able. Oh, so able, Deb.

This next year will be yet another adventure. I can't wait to see what unfolds for and with you.

M said...

Enjoy the peace of the slack...because we know what comes next. Either the pushing or the pulling, but in either instance the possibility of turbulence. I'm so glad you are in this place and that you are ready and willing for what comes next. Know that I'll be here with you.


Barb said...

A lovely interlude - much like what I'm experiencing here in the CO mountains. To just be still for awhile is grace.

Journaling Woman said...

I love this, "I hear the song of a season ripe for change". I don't like change at all, and yet I hear the song and know it will all be well.


kario said...

Breathtaking words, my friend. You are a wonder and I am honored to be able to sit and read this over and over again.

Thank you.

Terri Tiffany said...

beautiful words again:))

Suzy said...

Get ready for your journey.....

One that will knock your socks off!!! (In a good way)

It's all led up to this.

Love you,


Wanda said...

Not yet. I am not ready for summer to turn to wet...constant wet.

patti said...

Your lyricism, your depth, your analogies, never CEASE to amaze me.

May God nourish you with Living Water this ENTIRE YEAR.

Blessings, dear one.

Amber said...

Beautiful writing. And feeling. I love the stuff about fall waiting. Please yes!


patricia said...

Reminds me of one of my all time favorite verses: Be still, and know that I am God. I have clung to it many times. Surrendered my worry to the stillness. Love to you, Deb.

Katie Gates said...

You have such a powerful command of the language. Always beautiful and moving.

Carrie Link said...

This type of writing is your strength. The "story," if you will.

colbymarshall said...

I AM READY for some fall coolness. I can't take the heat. I am also ready to learn to relax. Soon!

She Writes said...

I wonder how many of these magical pauses I've missed over the years.

Love the way you catch yourself now.

Kathryn Magendie said...

This post is breathtaking - and it is such a companion to my yoga post isn't it? *smiling*

I so hope nothing will be in the way of our meeting when I visit Portland in October, this time!

Carol............. said...

Just beautiful, Deb..and the picture is a perfect match to go with the the written words.

I, too am in the same moment in time and yet excited for the next turn of events.

kim said...

Awesome and so beautiful, Deb. Thank you for sharing.