500 Words Per Day: Outside on the Earth

IMG_0314It certainly doesn't look like much: the earth coming off a long winter bender, hungover, strungout. Yet I felt compelled to spend some serious time out in it today and enjoy the warmth of the sort-of Spring sun caressing my wintered skin. I watched as this creek (pronounced: 'crick') strolled on by at a leisurely pace.

I took some time to listen to the world for a few minutes. All I hear all week long is the sound of children talking or screaming or humming or grunting or singing. I'm not complaining: it's what I do, and I'm glad to do so. Today was a different kind of day. I just sat with my wife beside this smoothly flowing stream in the warm sun and read my book.

IMG_0315I listened to the world as it swayed and listed and groaned and sang.

I heard crisp grass speaking

beneath my feet and weight.

And tired trees creaking.

I listened as the birds singing

Tried to find harmony with

With the earth that was spinning.

It was a rather magical–a tired old tree in and of itself–afternoon. Trees creaking. Water flowing. Wind was blowing. Birds were singing. I swear the sun was humming while blades of grass were drumming. Scattered leaves sounded like so many clapping hands in this all too March afternoon.

A rush of wind brushed past my face. A gush of air and a warm day in March and sky so fair. how could anyone not enjoy a day like today?

While the stream flows by without a sound

Even in dead wood there is beauty to be found.

I got to thinking about things as I walked through the squishy grass that had recently been swallowed by the stream. I got to thinking about how one describes the rustle of grass as it's touched by the breeze? It also made me think about learning: why we teach students things like the seasons, the tilt of the earth, weather and the sun. Why do we spend time walking around in the mud on cool March days and traipsing through fields and jumping across streams?

I think it's so we can sing its praise when we feel it upon our skin. I did jump a stream today. I stepped on a part of the grass that wasn't quite as solid as I thought and had to make a leap before I was up to my knees in muddy water. When I did, I was already off balance and I fell, muddying the knees of my jeans in the process. But oh that mud felt so nice. IMG_0340

So I thought about the warmth of the sun. The caress of the breeze. The chill of the mud. The silent strolling of the crick. The creak of the trees. The silent glide of a hawk high above. I thought of all of it converging in that one spot at that one moment. And all I could do was give Praise to God.


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