Tag Archives: myback

hurry up and wait

Ever since I can remember, I’ve identified with animals. Animals were a constant. I watched them, drew them and when I grew a bit, I read about them, but always I dreamed about them. My first lesson in death was of an animal, by my own hand, before I was old enough to go to school.

When I “grew up” I lost my connection with animals. I traded my nature-heart for the worldly reality of reason, logic, sex, drugs and rock ‘n roll. I traded magic for the aloof of cool.

I find this sad and I’ve had quite enough of reason and cool. I am sad that I lost my way for 30 odd years. With the death of my mother 17 years ago, my body rebelled. I entered the world of fluctuating hormones too soon. My body could no longer obey the pull of the moon. I shorted out. But still I didn’t see all the cut cables and exposed wires that used to be my connection with the world as I knew it. My breasts grew tender and swollen, as they did when I entered puberty. My libido drove my wild at the most inappropriate times, but still, I didn’t pay attention to the real world. I just carried on carrying on, trying to work within the artificial boundaries of reason.

and then a funny thing happened…

I started looking into the world of plants. I thought I was learning about the medicinal properties of herbs, but I found I was looking for more. I found out that plants are as magical as animals. I found out about energy, faeries, quantum physics and string theory. I found my way back to animals through weeds and trees and roots and the heartbeat of drums. I found out that flowers fondle our feelings and the poisonous poke is my guide back home. I made a drum and started turning furniture into art.

and then my back broke…

My back stopped my walks in the woods. My back took away my ability to stand, sit, study and sleep. I looked to my plants, but they couldn’t help. I looked to my animals — I dreamed for them, but try as they might, they couldn’t help. So I placed a needle in my spine and filled the too narrow space with cortisone. I felt like a failure. I felt like a failure.

But I can walk again…so I must readjust and loosen my grip on perspective.

Magic comes in many forms and magic doesn’t play by anybodies rules. She comes with animals, plants, rocks, stars, a baby’s breath or a dying sigh — even from a hypodermic needle full of steroids.

I don’t know why I’m writing this. I’m sad. I’m restless. I’m tired of waiting for my life to begin again and I’m worried I have no time left and I’m wasting it all.

I just want to get back to the animals. I am Crow, Wolf, Horse and Lizard. Elk leads me and Heron preens while Praying Mantis reminds me to pay attention. Horse gallops the length of my spine and Hyena rips it to shreds. Wolf bites Elk’s ass and gets kicked for his trouble while Crow laughs at all of them without a lick of reverence. Turkey Vulture just sits and waits for dessert.

I really need to get my ass in gear and lighten up. I’m missing all the fun.

tree medicine

I planted my feet on the ground and leaned back into the old chestnut oak, placing my hands between my back and its bark. I slowed my breath and closed my eyes and let the back of my head rest on the rough skin.

And I rested.

After a brief time, I opened my eyes and the world was shimmering. Not sparkly or shiny but somehow more fractal, a bit brighter, prismatic like a painting by Chuck Close.

And then my sacrum clunked with a jolt. Shifted as if a chiropracter had adjusted it. But it was deep and strong and it happened again. Strong enough to make me gasp, not from pain, but from the suddenness. And again, and again.

I turned and faced the tree, placed my hands on the trunk and looked closely at the bark. Energy surged through my arms and the tree breathed like a bellows, expanding and contracting in rhythmic waves of circular motion.

I think this tree likes me.

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