summer of becoming, Hay Lake, day 2


Sept 1 , Hay Lake Lodge

I awoke yesterday morning to a heavy sky, which nonetheless was quite beautiful, and sat on the deck by the water in complete stillness for 2 hours (I had grown accustomed to rising @5:30 in camp and breakfast was not coming this morning until 8) . I will attach a photo of that sky for you to see.

It did eventually clear to a perfect day for airing out and drying the camping gear in the sun and the breeze, though today the sky has remained gray, occasionally breaking into a thin, misty rain. I purchased an Audubon society book about weather at the visitor’s center, so perhaps I will be better able to understand and appreciate watching the clouds movements, which have so transfixed me this summer.

During the trip with the women, I pulled out some of my copied essays and quotes on canoeing to read aloud during mornings in camp before our contemplative sit. One particular morning, I read a litany of facts (wonders!!) to ponder about water… the way it is constantly being transformed and recycled, becoming ice in one place, then part of the body of an animal in the desert in another, for instance, across time and space. Following that litany with a series of canoeing excerpts, which spoke of how it feels to be in the flow of life on a canoe trip, moving with the water and through the currents in a sort of dance, resounded within me of the way in which it feels to know, bodily, that one is a part of this natural flow, not simply a witness along the shore, but one with the water and the natural order of things. These two, taken in one after the other, were to me like the sun breaking through in a blaze of color at dusk.

I have been passing through quite a long season of transformation. This is the way of water after all –  this constant movement and changing of form, while bearing Life itself along with it, constantly cleansing it, at times fueling it, sometimes carving it (those rocks that we love becoming smooth.), becoming cloud or ice or even flesh for a time, all the while bearing its passengers into new landscapes.

In some ways I feel as if this has been like a long pregnancy and birthing process for me, not knowing what was being birthed within these amniotic waters. Though at times it felt both painful and powerful, growthful and constrictive, alternately requiring of me resilience and patience, forcefulness, assertiveness, breath and endurance- what has gushed forth from this long labor has indeed been new life.  In other ways, this season of my life has felt like a long pilgrimage through many kilometers of water and portage trails, not knowing what was around the next bend but being ever drawn to discover, placing one paddle stroke after the other, one footfall after the other, on some sort of sacred quest/journey.

 For years as I would explore the turtle totem… which had always been a land animal for me, teaching me about carrying my home with me, and finding that place of safety within, as I journeyed through life’s changing terrains….  I would find written ideas about this aspect of the turtle that really flows when she gets into the water and into her natural element.  I did not understand nor connect with those ideas, could not find that particular feeling within me in those long years of enduring. I understand that feeling of flow, of aliveness now.

 This is the first I have sat since yesterday morning when my sisters left for home. I am quite tired. Perhaps I should have booked some rest for myself. Still, I trust that a rhythm will emerge soon in which I can find at least some tiny space of stillness and quiet.

Erin has gone for a haircut and to do some shopping in Bancroft. I am in the lodge to answer the phone, though I feel quite unequipped even for that small task yet.  I spent the morning carrying trays and washing dishes, then did some gardening. I will be mulching the path tomorrow.


2 Comments (+add yours?)

  1. Trackback: summer of becoming | Emmaatlast's Weblog
  2. Trackback: revisiting | Emmaatlast's Weblog

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