Wednesday, June 28, 2006

Sitting Still / Yoda Lesson

How simple. Just pull up a chair and sit in the back yard. How simple is that?
So I sit here, with pad on lap and pen in hand. And flit from thought to thought.
It's not a "wandering stream" sort of a meandering of ideas, flowing seamlessly from one to another. It's a sprinkling of water in a hot skillet - jumping and bubbling, and eventually disappearing without memory and without the satisfaction of finish.

Pick up the lemonade and take a sip, noticing the straw is soft and disquieting.

We really need to mow the lawn.
Be in the "here and now", oh, yes, the Yoda lesson.
"Never his mind on where he was". It's not as easy as you would think.
I'm here. I am listening to the baby birds chirp with animation when parent birds come back with food.
See, I'm here - here and now. What?
Oh, yes, the breeze through the bamboo and shadows of the leaves making patterns on the gravel path.

Another gulp of lemonade.

Need to trim the grass along the path. Humph. And need to move the rocks from under the tree.
Oh, yea. And replant the lavender so it's in a mound, and we might as well move the grass that's there over by the vegetable garden. I wonder if the vegetables need more fertilizer. I should have planted the sunflowers sooner - they'll never be fully up and ready by fall.

Another swig of lemonade.

How do I learn to quiet the planner, the one who sees "what needs to be done" and let the one who sees "what is"? "Always looking to the future was he. Never his mind on where he was or what he was doing."
Planning has worked for me. It's actually been rewarded and I've been promoted because of that skill.
But I keep having this longing, for as long as I've felt like me, to pay attention to my world.
And my world is not "the globe".
Some folks want to travel and see sights and be active, doing daring things and have amazing stories to tell.
I want to become intimate with my world, which is home and heart.
I want to learn to be able to see what's here, to listen and to appreciate.
To be able to see the subtle changes between a week ago and today, between now and a minute ago.
Without letting the "and now, what shall we do about this" leap in. No good, no bad, just is, to be seen in as much detail as I can absorb. Not the scientific microscope, but the ability to see the grass with the limitless shades of varying greens and watch the one blade that sways in the breeze. The rest are so still, but the one moves just a bit,
back and forth, making the color change and shadows the blade underneath, so it too becomes evergreen and then lime green as the one blade circles above.
Oh, look, a tiny red spider travels along the top of my notebook, clearly with a purpose as he scurries along the edge. One puff of my cheeks and he's now lost in the grass below. Ah, the grass. Look there is clover. Need to figure out how to get that out of here; otherwise it will just take over the yard.

Another gulp of lemonade and I'm back in the future, planning and changing.

The blade of grass and its brothers are too long and I need to mow the grass.
And the reel mower I bought doesn't work all that well, so I need to take it some place where they can sharpen the blades and align so I can cut the grass easier. They are way up in Redmond, that's not very convenient.


Can I at least come back to the backyard?
And can I at least come back to today?
The breeze has picked up and now the chimes on the back deck ring with a song, a soothing rhythm that feels cool and restful just to hear. And the rock fountain trickles and sparkles as the water flows from one pocket in the rock to the next. If my hearing was better, I'll bet the grass makes a sound as it shakes and flutters in the breeze.
But for now I hear the chimes and the baby birds chirping out a loud greeting as food is brought to the bird house door.
A small plane goes by in the distance, a quiet rumble.

Another lemonade sip.

A white butterfly comes in, flittering from the pond to the flower, changes direction six times before bouncing in the air over the hedge and lost out of sight. Much like my thoughts today, flit, land, flit, change course, flirt, gone.
See the spider thread glow in the sun then disappear as the breeze moves the cattail leaf. Today now is in me. I just have to sit still and listen.
And then listen again when today is lost in the noise of yesterday and tomorrow.

Another sip of lemonade, cool in my mouth, as it flows down the sides of my tongue.

Another deep breath and another breeze comes in and shakes the top of the grass.
It's a good day.

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