seeping through pebbles,
over and under to the far-out sea.
Come back, come back, be filled.
One lonely gull,
no more than that to prove I exist,
Mounds of brown sea-weed,
great lumps of slime and slither on denser rock.
The scent of ozone everywhere
neither sweet nor pungent, in my lungs, my mind.
Xylophone tinkles on pebbles,
Power of Cello in wise old rocks.
Trumpet call from standing trees
that hold the cliffs a few days more.
A muffled silence in sagging,
rain filled clouds,
the long, lonely, notes roaring in my ears.
cabbages, crisp and clean,
the narrow ditch
where nettles sting.
Snail tracks glisten
like silver threads on
the pile of stones at the garden end.
On hands and knees I hold my breath,
gaze through the gap
in the hawthorn hedge,
to the meadow,
where white horses tread.
And everywhere I look,
(You never forget that view.)
When I was very young, nature engaged in my make-believe games in complete and total co-operation. In my Grandmother’s garden, every day brought a new discovery, stored in my memory box of sights, sounds, tastes, touch and smell, emotions almost beyond a language of descriptive adjectives. Someone said that birds, and animals perceive the world in a different way to humans, this is possibly true, up to a point. But what if, as adults, the ability to listen with our senses diminished along with our outgrown childish toys. The world is more than it seems, it speaks the language of the heart that we are all connected to. I trust my heart to engage with nature in total and complete gratitude.
Kookaburra’s start the morning chorus, accompanied by the dove, bringing echoes of another age when the world was still young. The song is haunting. Michael says birdsong heals the world. He believes that birds sing every morning to redress the balance inflicted on nature by the wrong-doing of mankind. It’s a comforting thought. I believe he is right.
It’s still raining. Rain-forest trees drip onto broad leaves of banana plants, into muddied earth, to find again the narrow river that will carry the song in it’s gurgling. Above my bed, a huge fly slaps frantically against the ceiling, finally settling into the corner just above my head. Watching the now motionless intruder, I’m convinced it’s up to no good, planning a dive-bomb attack the moment I look away.
From the other room, a suffocating smokers cough. A spoon rattles in a glass, the medicinal drink is mixed, swallowed with a mixture of hope & distrust. He lights a cigarette and heads outside to taste the morning. The smell of tobacco seeps into my room, but I wait for a few considered moments before slipping on my dressing gown and slippers to join him on the wooden deck.
He is comfortably seated on the cushioned bench, smiling with the same happiness that I feel. I kiss his cheek, and together we listen to the rising echo of the waking rain-forest. The ethereal blossom of the Chinese silk tree, pretty in pink, catches me in surprised awareness. I’m not sure who is looking at who. Michael says nature is curious, watching and listening, just like us. He isn’t frightened of dying, he has a profound sense of excitement at realising the next step in the great adventure of his life. The basic survival instinct is manifested in his anger at corrupt governments, at wrong management of natural resources, and sadness, that so many people are blind or indifferent to the escalating deterioration of our planet, but his anger doesn’t last long, and there is no time for sadness.
Frogs call to each other. Birdsong reaches a crescendo. The narrow river below rushes past with purpose. Immersed in the oneness of all things, enraptured, we listen.