take it to the river

I sit in the shade of the bridge with the moon overhead.

The sound of the cars melds with the sound of the water.

The river can teach us.

And the river says, “Let go – go with the flow.

For now, be gentle and take your time.

For now, you can sunbathe on rocks.

Smooth, gentle, go slow.”

The river is low, the day warm: fall time, harvest time.

Low enough that I could walk across it.

Enough that I could cool my calves in it if I were too warm, but I’m not.

“Make yourself available to the world,” I say.

But what does that mean?

I offer you the world and your own voice, they are already yours.

I say, keep ahold of your heart –

or give it away to the earth and the sun and the moon and the stars.

Just please don’t let them steal it from you –

Because they need your complacency but the world needs your vibrant messy aliveness.

The river says, “Humans touch and move and bend and affect –

yet still there is life in the nooks and crannies.

Still there is the play of water-bugs darting about.

Still there is a baby fish swimming in the current.

The sun still rises and sets.”

Life on the smallest and grandest levels does not take humans into consideration.

And somehow, I find that relieving.

The sun casts shadows through the moving water.

Burnt umber mixed with cadmium yellow, mixed with a touch of slate grey and white.

The river says, “. . . prepare for the winter.

Soon the cold will come; find your rightful place and hunker down.”

I don’t know how to give you this river in words,

the water that ripples continuously.

These words are not enough –

But maybe they will catch the edge of your imagination.

Maybe they will make you remember a river that you have seen.

The sound, like a river.

Like a million tinkling fairy bells that have widened out.

The smell of water and algae and motion.

The feeling of peace and nowhere else we need to be right now.

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