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Location: Midwest, United States

Friday, July 08, 2011

I'm at Peace

I’m at peace when I cycle along country roads. Not always, mind you. I don’t fare well in traffic. I’ve come to understand that my cousin’s fatality and my own near-fatal motorcycle crash left indelible prints. Luckily, I live in a sparsely populated area with miles upon miles of open country roads. I can often pedal a mile or two in solitude. I am happiest then.

I’m not oblivious when at peace. Quite the contrary. My senses become more acute. I feel the air around me, each temperature change and shift of breeze. I smell the earth. I try to decipher bird calls and smile because Life abounds. My senses become acutely aware...except for the eyes that inexorably fade in acuity. Sigh.

I dissolve into my own body. Breath and pulse, aches and strains make themselves felt, observed and understood.

It is good to become pure animal again.

* * *


Blogger erin said...

i felt just this the other night when i went out to walk through the woods and ended up running. i marveled at this body that manages to sometimes want to work so well. what the hell? of course it hurts after but it's always well worth it. to BE inside of these bodies and get so much in return! never mind being in nature. don't think i could make it much in a city. don't think i could breathe too deeply on concrete.


Fri Jul 08, 09:43:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I love to walk through the woods, by myself, listening to the trees and the birds.

Fri Jul 08, 09:57:00 PM  
Blogger Ponita in Real Life said...

I envy you the animal. When I walk, I want to run, but know my arm can't do that right now. Next year... there will be next year for the bike, for running, for the animal in me to be on the loose. Condensing down to that level is enlivening.

Sat Jul 09, 08:31:00 AM  
Blogger secret agent woman said...

I feel like that when I walk. And ski, for that matter.

Sat Jul 09, 11:58:00 AM  
Blogger PattiKen said...

There is something magical about being in the outdoors without civilization intruding. For me it is the woods, paths covered in leaves and pine needles, the smell of evergreens, the only sounds those of the birds and the faint crunch of your feet on the forest floor. There is no greater peace. I'm glad you've found your peace out there too.

Sat Jul 09, 03:53:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

I see we have a lot of forestry fans here. I'm certainly one, having spent years running on forest trails, mostly for the sheer joy in it.

Here's one of my most beloved pems, one that I often repeat to myself:

The Peace of Wild Things

When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

Wendell Berry

Sat Jul 09, 09:58:00 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I often walk at night and even though people say to me :'Isn't it dangerous to walk at night?' I never feel in danger. I am oblivious in the dark too but not so that I am unaware. It is almost as if I merge with the night. I love it!

Wed Jul 13, 09:40:00 PM  
Blogger Jonas said...

You're singing to the choir, Selma. I'm a "night person" too.

Thu Jul 21, 11:05:00 PM  

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