Grasshopper and Snail.

I recently had a run in with a large (I assume here) female grasshopper in a sunny park in west Philadelphia. (S)he landed on my shoulder, stayed there the whole time I sang a song about an intertwining of three people, and when I finished, she made the most magnificent leap. At the apex of where her legs carried her, she opened wings and made a show of not caring much for gravity. I lost sight of her before she seemed to be even considering a descent. The grasshopper is sacred to some as a sign of a new adventure, a sign of “hey, why don’t you just use those huge beautiful legs of yours to leap hard into the next adventure”.  So it happened.

Snails and their shells litter the Delaware River’s slippy-moss rocks. I love them. They are the under freshwater kind, tall and proud of the few centimeters of home they have calcified on their posteriors. A mollusk-gastropod throwback to the Paleozoic, these little folks are proof that the nomadic “home on your back” idea can be a long lasting  and beautiful thing. A gliding (not walking, surely) near constant movement opportunistically making progress while (usually) firmly in contact with the earth. I can get into this idea.

So what does this have to do with books and me and people and the world and creativity and whosawhats? Maybe nothing, maybe everything.

The first half of this year was a whirlwind of beautiful growth and building and trusting and loving. Then I got lyme and it all seemed to crash at the same time. I am more than healthy now, no worries there. Most of everything I was doing in May, I am not doing now. It so happens that I have no control over anything but my actions…and sometimes even that seems a stretch. I have come to know myself more through a fall from grace, whatever that phrase means. I have come to know those I love, and began to actually accept and know their love as well.

I have also learned once more that forgiveness is terribly difficult. Whether a lover, the world itself, an enemy, or, maybe even harder, one’s self. It begins with understanding… moccasin swap-style, and might end up with a humbled ego and accepting that what others do “to” you, was most likely done without thinking of you…this is where the hurt turns to tears. Like rain washes the blood from battlefield in it’s return to the sea….so do these fire tears cleanse that intangible place that aches during heartbreak.  So to those that I have brushed with painfully, I forgive. To those I have wronged, I dream you to be able to understand and forgive.

I am loosing my mooring from the great Atlantic side of this continent. On to the Pacific soon enough. A change of pace, scenery. A mighty launch with these beautiful legs with a pack and guitar. It is possible to carry your ancient home with you.


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