Perhaps a Phase?

A chill shudders through my aching spine sore from the sloppy deadlifts and rainy weekend as I walk down the path to my neighbors home. The field of grass dances in harmony with the barking dogs and their new friend; my sister and the puppies’ eyes wide with delight. “Thud, thud, thud” my worn birkenstock clogs hit the gravel with forgiveness, the small descent more enticing than the smaller uphill to follow. The setting sun to the left of me, the scene is rather picturesque— quite the reprieve from the rumbling clouds the night before now headed east with little haste. The damp coldness mocks the summer’s humidity, but here, the creatures know that the break of spring will sink it’s beautiful claws into the pall by the end of the week.The bristle of leaves lie together, united like on sacred ground they are unwilling to give up. Maybe most able to have a free spirit, these dead lie stubborn and stagnant in their need to move on. I smile at a squirrel as I hang a right to the once dusty trail now rejuvenated by the storm. The downed limbs seem to almost rejoice, happy to be unburdened by what they could no longer carry. I keep walking and a bare wooly caterpillar inches silently by my foot. A ladybug lands on a leaf nearby. This happenstance of greater meaning mocks the omens we humans have created and I chuckle at the joke these crawlers seem to play on me. A few strides away, water dapples in slow motion as a tufted titmouse lands on the hollow branch steeped in old mud and fungi. She skips, taking little hops around the jagged rocks of the shallow creek bed like she’s tiptoeing. Like she’s intruding on this little patch of planet that perhaps belongs to her more than any other planet. A twig snaps and she flies off, past the dead oak and curved limbs, the intricacy of the wooded barriers mimics her call. They are her home.When she lands she shuffles back and forth. Waiting and wondering for what is to come next. The expectancy is rather understood on this humble ground. Not over-bearing nor flaunting this small forest is not quick to brag but rather impressive to the small city girls eye view. Perhaps for the whistling bird it is the same. The slim trees and dry patches and mucky piles of leaves hold promise in what they aren’t: flashy, boastful, enthralling. Solace is rather found in its mundane breeze, a simplicity giving life to a pink and purple hazed dusk. The sounds of whispering feathers and random 5:11 pm church bells in the distance mute the loudness of the larger scope. Maybe even give the music of the surrounding rhythms fresh ears to be ready to listen.And for the little bird and the little girl, this is needed. A place to rejoice. A place to recenter. Perhaps the faint path is the one most important to tread. Perhaps it is what they both were waiting for.

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