Listening

Sometimes all I can think to do is go outside.

When people or politics press too close.
When this country glaringly misaligns with what I hold dear.
When time feels slippery in its passing.

Sometimes all I can think to do is go outside.

To the long view and the leaves dripping with dew.
Where the wind reminds me to breathe deeply
and my furrowed brow relaxes
as my eyes rest on the abundant shades of green.

Without any thought this year
I have found myself working in the garden barefoot.
The garden shoes dedicated to permanent dirt
stay in the breezeway as I step outside.

I couldn’t have said I needed that
but the feel of solid ground, of thick grass,
the textures of earth
the welcoming soft tilled soil…
all of it heals me a little bit each time.

Grounding me, literally, in this place I love.
Covering my feet in something natural and real.
Sun on my skin, dirt under my nails,
this little piece of Wild earth
is what I get to care for and nurture
even as it responds in kind.

Maybe it’s the things we let ourselves do
without heavy thought or too much polish
that bring us back to who we are.

Maybe it’s as simple as saying Yes
to the wisdom inside that whispers
to take off your shoes.
Or to walk in the rain.
Or whatever Wild notion comes upon us
when we let “the soft animal of our body love what it loves.”*

 

*All other words refused to stay on the page, this phrase comes from the beloved Mary Oliver poem, “Wild Geese”

Chris Heeter Signature

 

 

 

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