The past week has been dramatic with stormy weather, hot humid days, and an approaching full moon. I have watched clouds lifting off the meadow as the warmth of the sun hit the earth that somehow, magically, cooled again overnight.
It feels like yet another thing about living in the hills that I am falling in love with, being able to experience the alchemy of change each day so clearly.
The minute we enter the woods after one storm, change is apparent. It isn’t just the visible layer of debris lining the path, but the sense of something altered. As we walk toward the water I notice new gaps in the landscape. Looking to the right I see one massive tree now horizontal, slashing across the path we would be looping back around too. Heart beating fast now, the entire walk is dominated by the anticipation of encountering this tree up close.
It is a dramatic change.
The tensile strength of the wood, normally hidden from view, is completely revealed, stretched to its breaking point.
And yet in this change, I feel how this place, these woods, are completely true to what they are as wild, unpredictable, and regenerating. They become more what they are. Not to be tamed or controlled.
It is an illusion to think that it is any less wild or unpredictable within the four walls of home, or within the intricate workings of the human body.
I now need to alter my view, shift the way I move, in order to continue on this path. Ironically it feels like the same path, just clearer now, more naked to the truth. But still, something needs to change.
And then we emerge out into the meadow path. Different, more exposed.
There are daily wonders and discoveries to be found here. The blue chicory calls. I take an inordinate amount of time to capture what I am feeling in this photograph, how much this singular blue essence wants to be seen.
Look up and see two hawks riding the air stream, imagining how their world view can be altered by the slightest shift in temperature or wind.
We’ve also entered into the season of abundant zucchini. Soon, the giant squashes will be transformed into breads and soups, but for the moment, still modest in size, they are simply cut into slices, sautéed in a mixture of bone broth and olive oil until just soft, watching for that moment when it is done but still looks fresh, sprinkled with salt and pepper, and eaten alone with a few added chickpeas and some crisp bacon as an accompaniment.
The essence of this vegetable is bared and accentuated and completely visible. It is the beauty of cooking for the art of celebrating what is, and by doing so, creating an opportunity to experience something differently.
It is like I am fond of saying about son Ben. As a person with Down Syndrome, he needs to find support in this world differently than those of us with a more typically developing brain. He has created amazing opportunities for himself by simply being who he is. I like to say, “Ben has the ability to open the doors to what he needs, it is my job to keep the door open long enough for him to walk through.”
All of these tangents lead back to the feeling of letting time be. To the very core of creativity. Giving space to the process of something finding its own essence, and then stepping back, holding that space, and reveling in what is there.