Sunday, October 25, 2009

Wind Chill on the Mountain

As I enter my third winter on this mountain in Floyd Virginia. I am well aware that this is the season of the wind. It blows virtually constant in the winter months. Today it’s a warm wind and the leaves fall skyward like flocks of birds but in chaotic discourse, together released and each individual finding it’s own path to ultimate rest and compost through another season. This wind is a constant reminder of what’s really in charge here. Like water there is no stopping it, it moves at it’s own whim, I see personality in it, I fought it the first year, screamed at it, wrestled with it, hated it and cursed it. It took my shopping list away it took my hat and returned every emotion I gave it. Humbling this wind is. I have learned to respect it and it has returned the favor. Last year when I was deep in the dark night of my soul’s journey, hurting deep down in my core, it was that harsh wind that soothed my pain. Walking in the wind, tears streaming from my eyes, it was the wind that cleansed my soul. As difficult as the time was as tortured as I felt it was the constant companionship of the wind that carried the pain off as prayers into the wilds of where it is that the wind goes.

I grew up with a wind. There is a southern California wind called the Santana or the Santa Ana it’s a full blown big wind that comes from the east off the desert. Dry as a bone it parches the already dry landscape and with it comes the wildfires. They destroy everything in their path, flames rising well above tree lines houses bursting into memories, spectacular sunsets within the choking smoke and the falling ash. All this comes back deep in my experience as the now gusting Floydian wind assaults the loose corner of my metal roof. I can feel that sense of primal fear that knows if nature wants to take me down, I’m hers for the taking.

Ah, that primal fear the one that’s seems so real, as real as speaking in public as real as being attacked by a cave bear. Something about the humbling gut wrenching knot that tells us something needs to happen and it needs to happen now! Around the globe I sense we are all feeling that primal fear for existence, that fear that warns we are in danger and something needs to change now! We can’t buy our way out any longer, we’re out of money, and addictions of avoidance are beginning to loose their effect to distract us from the reality that is. The message is clear do we want to preserve life in this state or let it go in one final party of extravagance and individual separation. Perhaps just perhaps it is a good time to take a deeper look at what it is that sustains us, see if there might be some sense of joy in living in a world of clean air, water, food, basic shelter and health. Perhaps there could be happiness in the simplicity of existence rather than a life of extremes, excess and the constant want of more.

Perhaps this is all too simple coming from a simple Man choosing to be an artist in this world, or perhaps it is as simple as just living simply. Listening to our fear may be the first step into listening to our truest nature and as nature we know how to survive and in survival we can once again know true joy.

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