Thursday, September 6, 2012

Songs Without Words/ A Day with the Mosses

A day came when I had things to do... but when I stepped into the garden and 
felt the sparkling sunshine and listened to the high-summer buzz, a deeper need 
sent me to the forest. Drum in hand and small friend by my side, I set out along 
the path. I thought maybe to walk to the whispering stone, or the faery pool, but 
not far into our journey, I bent low and stretched out on a patch of moss amongst 
trees and mountain laurel. Drizzle the day before had set the mosses a-glow and 
nearby in the clearing, a gathering of dragonflies darted this way and that, silvered 
wings flashing by. 

Far off a raven squawked, and all around the rhythmic chirping of crickets
comforted me. I'm not quite sure why cricket songs are so soothing to me - 
the constant hum brings me to a quiet, listening place. 

Lying on the mosses, looking up at the sky, I listened for a long, long time. It is 
so absent of human-made noise here, that one can truly sink into dreaming and

After a time, I sat up, gathered my drum and my voice and my deep gratitude for 
this place and sang songs of trees and mosses and dragonflies and wind. Closer now, 
the raven answered and wondered, I'm sure, about this strange woman who sings 
songs with made-up words, more sounds than language... or maybe I am singing 
in that ancient tongue - you know, the one that is spoken of in the old stories, 
from a time when humans and animals shared a language, and knew better how to communicate. Perhaps the raven knows what I am saying, even if I do not. 

When finally it was time to return, I noticed, as I always do, how the quiet 
listening, the drumming and singing and dreaming had shifted me. In 
my expanded awareness, stones and trees and creatures each spoke to me with
their particular forms and gestures. Maybe this is the communication the old 
stories tell of. Perhaps the language is not lost, but it is a language of the senses
that is not spoken, but felt - mumbled to us by the shape and texture of a stone, 
the particular bend in a tree, the flash of light on dragonfly wings.