Friday, December 30, 2011
Warm Winter's Light
How truly wonderful this alternate environment is.
Delicious in its tastes of sun-tea,
and rays of golden sun warming my exposed toes.
I love not wearing any shoes ...
this is the place to do it nearly year-round!
The concrete walls surround me in the back yard,
as they delineate yards everywhere,
yet I see the open sky,
hear the birds,
watch the mesquite that hangs
gently moving over our border,
a bee hurries by intently,
and I adjust to the beautiful starkness here
so different from our former home in Maine--
surroundings even in dramatic contrast
to the vegetation and landscape of nearby Tucson.
When walking down the long paved road yesterday with the dogs,
who trotted along on their short legs
sniffing the air and watching everything in rapt fascination,
I recalled words spoken before we moved here--
saying how I liked Nature to be all around on my walks,
and then arriving to realize the seeming emptiness
of this location divested of the abundance of Nature.
Yet not really. The dogs know more...
What is "nature" after all?
I see it/Her all around when my eyes were opened
from within outward,
the thin grasses,
the stubborn mesquite,
the resilient birds who sing in joy even here,
the glimpse of the huge black-tail Jack,
an occasional almost-spectral coyote crossing a road,
and so much more spread out before me,
stretching so very, very far
without confinement of barrier tree lines
or constantly rolling hills.
Gravel and sand, minerals claiming their right to be here
reflecting back the miners' supposed claims upon them.
Always slightly squinting against sun glare
in spite of dark spectacles,
the tension of skin reacting with arid space,
creating creases near the eyes more rapidly than in
dimmer lit environs settled in mists and clouds and shadows
more often than not.
Nature is all around me here,
She simply wears fewer decorations,
less clothes upon Her gorgeous tanned body.
I join Her in the delight of near-eternal sunbathing,
drenching my essence with light during the day.
Yet at night, pull blankets overhead,
snuggle into cocoons of warmth because
as soon as the sun drops over the horizon and
we tilt away from its glow...brrr...
a match dropped down a deep well.
I still marvel at the contrasts--
is it any wonder that I am like a kid in front of candy store
eagerly waiting for the door to open in the morning
so that I can go satisfy my taste for that sweet sunlight?
I step outside instead of inside.
Out into a world of brightness and subtle gifts
where nothing is ever taken for granted by
Her indigenous people or the native beings who
crawl, walk, hop, fly and grow.
living in this gorgeous-ugliness of desert survival--
over-grazed, over-farmed, abandoned when depleted
of its meager precious topsoil by those who were greedy and oblivious--
accepting what is,
I smile more,
I admire more,
I am deeply grateful for the opportunity to explore
an exposed world along with my now-revealing-themselves
depths previously unknown.
There is an exquisite aura of vulnerability
here where nothing is hidden.