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Understory

Photo by Megan Marcinkus

I can trace back through my entire life, and see how even when the fear kicked in, She was always there, an aspect of myself taking soft sure footsteps. Carefully placed footsteps, made with the entire foot, spreading out and gripping the terrain, reading it. Accepting guidance from the cosmos, fine-tuning her compass to the constellations.

Feet searching for roots. Feet searching for texture and temperature. Feet reading the surface for clues as to what lived and breathed underneath. Spirit open for the gift of feathered wings sprouting from the solid trunk of a tree rooted for eternity in one place.

The under story. Animating force. That which bursts into being when the slabs of concrete shame fall away.

Recently an old dream haunts and reminds.

A gentle woman with long dark hair shows me a bit of earth. I watch to where her hand is indicating and see some leaves and then a stem, and finally a bud make its way up through the earth and into bloom as a beautiful flower, in the sped up fashion that only the dream time, or its counterpart in reality, a time-lapse camera, can render. Unlike its real cousin, however, in the dream, a tiny light is ignited as the flower grows and seems to be the force which lifts the glowing flower up and out of the earth to bloom.

That dream was many years ago now. I had no idea what it meant at the time. At the time I thought it was the woman causing the magic. I looked at her and wondered what she knew that I didn't. I wanted to know her magic. I wanted to cast a spell like that and make things bloom at my will.

But there is something about revisiting the dream now, that feels as if she were merely showing me the animating force of life. A force she discovered, which gave her the power to show me.

The other day the girls and I got some bulbs at the garden shop. I asked the sales associate if I needed any of the products surrounding the display made for the purpose of enriching the bulbs.

'No,' he said, 'Everything the bulb needs to bloom is contained within the bulb.'

He told me the products were for later, when the bulbs needed a little more love because of their rich contribution of their flowers over many years.

Everything the bulb needs to bloom is contained within. Flower after flower after flower.

Once planted these bulbs would be activated.

We also bought some Crimson Clover seed as a cover crop. I'd never heard of such a thing. There was something I could seed that would enrich and aerate my soil, bring it back to life?

The other night my older daughter prepared the garden beds and then sewed the seeds as part of my sneaky plan to give my children chores that will connect them to deeper processes within life--connect them to the earth, as in tending to the yard, and to the fruits of the earth, which looks like free rein in the kitchen (as much as I can tolerate). I am not one of those people that does all this naturally, so this is new for all of us.

I watched my daughter through the window, and she looked a little bit like me standing there surveying her work, and I could practically read her thoughts, because they were so close to my own. Wow, this is a lot of work. My back hurts. This earth is hard. What tool would be helpful? This sucks. No, it's not so bad. I like the look of the earth empty and ready to plant something. I can't wait to spread the seeds out. I wonder if they will grow. Whatever. This sucks. I've been out here way longer than I am supposed to. This better count for many chores. Oops, this shovel broke. My mom is going to be so mad. Oh well, she is always mad. I kind of like this, but I will never let my mom know. 

But just the fact that she was out actually doing it makes me know that her soul was echoing mine as of late. It is time for the world to bloom around me. It is time for me to bloom. I am here to nurture and birth every aspect of my on precious life. Feeling fully alive depends on participation with body, mind, spirit, all the senses and more. Here we go. I will leave this world fully fledged.

It has been a few days, and we have yet to see any sprouts. I wait like a potential new mom, to see if the seeds will take hold, and truly my greatest joy will be to show my girls when they do, and to watch them grow over the winter.

Even as I wait for all this blooming, I feel Her footsteps. The One that leads both me and my daughters. On and on she walks, with no destination. She never stops moving, never stops feeling the earth and reading the the stars, drawing up roots, drawing down the cosmos into her story, receiving messages through her head and her feet, feeling the animated force that breathes us, that grows all things meant to grow, keeping us forever in contact with its magnetic force moving us along, even if we look a bit more like those silly ice skating decorations where the moving magnet moves the little skater around a mirrored pond in circles.

Sometimes it makes us dance.

The question is why She spends all of her time taking such careful footsteps, never stopping, always tuning to this vital force...

because she knows that the animating force is the understory of her life, and that it tickles up through her feet and shoots down from the stars through her royal crown, joining itself somewhere in the middle, activating feeling,  guidance, relevance, great worth, something natural within us that if we could see, would look like radiant light, and we would see it bringing us into bloom.




Comments

  1. "Everything the bulb needs to bloom is contained within the bulb." Dude! That is so deep. And profound. And True! Wow! That wisdom is now tacked up on my spiritual cork bulletin board, and I will refer back to it again and again and again. Thank you for that gem!

    I so enjoy your posts! Keep writing, my friend, keep writing. Barbara

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