This is a re-post of an entry I wrote seven years ago. I decided that since my blog is seven (!) years old, it would be fun to pull out some old posts and have a look at them. Here’s one I found, written in March 2006. My kids were five and four. I remember this afternoon well–one of the benefits of writing detailed entries, I guess, though what I remember most about it is playing with my children in the sand, and the little castle I built. Which is as it should be.
Yesterday the wind was wild with pollen. Testosterone even. Blustering about like an adolescent on mountain roads in his first car. A March wind.
Even in its tossing of air and dust and hair I could smell the daffodils happily blooming.
I walk to the sandy shore of Rock Creek, where she meets the River, where everything is dancing. I am not wild with it. I am turned again to my dark mirror. Tracing the lines of shadows on myself. My hands lay on the sand, fingers with their own bodies, their own knowledge, and they caress and delve and rake the large grained, mica-flecked sand. Once rocks. Once bones of mountain. Now a bed, a sitting place, now small.
The Sun is still low in the sky, even though it is nearing noon, even though are days to the Equinox are numbered, known by my fingers. I think of Summer’s grace, of the Sun arching in to the sky, the stretching light of Summer evenings. Really it is the Earth rolling towards her. I forget that so easily.
Later McKinley demands that I take him on the walk I’d promised, and Renee begins to sing at the mere thought of it. So we go again to the River. Our little spot of Riverland is more accessible in places because of the lack of rain, and because the flood of two Autumns past left a field of rocks where once there had been bog. We stumble over the dry clutter of stones as we trek about, finally settling upon another spot of sand where “onion grass” is growing.
My children immediately prepare for play. They remove their clunky boots, peel off their dirty socks. They pick a strand or two of spring onions and commence to chew. “Oooh, spicy,” smiles Renee. She smacks at it like gum as she begins the construction of a sand castle complete with stick-spikes. Of course McKinley disagrees with the spikes, they begin to argue, and McKinley decides he’ll just make his own, and it will be bigger and better.
They don’t want my input. So I make my own little sand hut. With a path of sticks that leads to my onion forest. I remember playing like this. I remember the brightness of that world. It has fallen from me.
In its place, the grind of the adult world. The stains that can’t be cleaned. The bellies that will never be filled. The march of routine and the drum of all the work that must be done. On this battlefield all the injustices of the world cry for my attention, and all the thoughts of what the future might hold for my children beat the deep drum of fear. My mind’s eye races with images of Earth’s mutilation by fingers that have no knowledge, that do not caress anything.
And I want to lay my head on the sand and let these thoughts sink deep into the hot heart of the Earth. I want to dig a deep hole and sleep in it for hours and hours. I want to wake to the brightness of the world I once knew, the dream of laughter where the trees knew my name and the sky was my father. When I was held in the palm of my Mother-God’s hand. When I was not afraid, and the world was new. I can remember those days, and forget them so easily.
You can read the original post here.