My friend and teacher Rebecca Pavlenko wrote me:
“Sometimes, during times like that, I just need to hibernate, go underground and rest and let renewal find its form.”
Rebecca isn’t merely giving me advice. She is saying that to act on faith is a risk. When I imagine stopping, a river of chills ripples through me and I think, “But what if I lose it forever?” To withdraw takes stone-cojones courage. Surrender is part of what happens when you grow. And life needs time, like sky needs the rain.
If it’s been a good week here, I owe it all to stormy afternoons and the Pope Farm Conservancy. As you walk up the hill – a steep-enough glacial drumlin-y sort of hill – you watch the century old stone wall to distract yourself from the effort. Swallows glide across the path, just a few inches from the grass, showing off deep indigo feathers and sunrise orange bellies. By the time you reach the top of the rise, where this year’s rotation of corn and sunflowers intersect, you feel you have climbed the world. The road noise has receded, and you feel very close to faraway things, like the stand of oaks at the horizon. You can hear the song of your own blood in your ears, and a bright-yellow flash overhead, calling out for a friend.