Sunday, 16 August 2009

Summer Path

A warm summers morning with high cloud and a mostly blue sky sees me walking along a wide footpath between two hedges. This may once have been an old trackway, now it is a place that allows nature to bear its precious goods. Between the corn fields this old trackway is warm with a gentle breeze floating over the closely trimmed hedgerows. Shadows of tall grasses and herbs ripple over the grass upon which I am sitting. There are bees on the purple knapweed, and many white butterflies dancing around the flowers - yarrow, clover, and so much more.

I've met hardly anyone on my walk today but in the space of perhaps just ten minutes of my sitting here two separate couples have walked by, one single person and a group of about 5 cyclists. And then no-one else. Who is this person sitting with a notebook on the grass in the middle of nowhere they must wonder.

The wind whispers around me, cars hum in the distance and flies buzz here and there. It is peaceful. Blackberries are turning from red to black. Tall hogweed stems reach upwards, now brown and dying, holding their fragile seedheads above the surrounding grasses. These strong verticles are reflected in the vapour trails that cross the sky above me.

Today my mind feels bogged down, dull, heavy and struggling to think about anything clearly. I hope the fresh air and the exercise will free some creative energy. I need something.

There is a huge richness around me that looks so easy and natural to nature. Yet it has to have a place to thrive and grow creatively. Creativity needs a place in which to grow, to be nurtured and to be fruitful. The fields around me are so managed with almost enforced ecosystems, and yet this broad pathway is a place of freedom and refuge for the plants and insect life to do what they need to do. All too often I feel as though i am not able to grow and flourish as much as I could. I know that is a negative thought, but it gets to me at times and I always seem to struggle with it.

This pathway is a beautiful place to be. The path is well worn and it looks as though it may be mown one in the spring or so. There are occasional gaps in the hedges where I can look outwards into the surrounding fields and countryside. It can be too easy for me to concentrate my view in the near and tangible. There is so much to look at and be stimulated by at whatever is close to hand, but sometimes I must look outwards - beyond the comfort zone - into the outer environment. I step aside from the path temporarily and walk into the field. It is bounded by bright red poppies, invisible from the path. The harvest has passed through this field year but it will be back another time. It is place where birds (pigeons and crows) fly with freedom - way from the boundaries of the hedgerow. I walk onwards, slowly. Soon my path will end, but it will open out into another path with new things to look at and new views and experiences.

I am writing this later in the evening at the top of the garden as the light fades. I feel more rejuvenated and responsive now. Being outside has really cleared my mind before another week of being chained to the computer at work.

Thank you for my walk.
Thank you for the freedom
For the flight of the butterflies
and the lightness of the post-combine straw.
Thank you for the breeze
That holds the smell of the sweetpeas
the flight of the bees
and the whispering leaves.
Thank you for the path
that took hold of my burden
and took me on a journey.
Thank you for my family
for the delight they bring.
May my mind find clarity
when words fail to appear.
May I know my path
and the joy it brings.
And for the other things
that are known by you
I ask for blessings
wisdom, truth and wisdom.

Thank you for this day.

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