Two Friends

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Iren by Iren Schio

 

Root Woman

Tree Woman

Sky Woman

Dear friends

Greet,

converse with one another

on the steely silver edge

of Truth and

Change.

Weaving together

roots

twigs, leaves,

clumps of dirt,

the two carve out

an underground story.

Mythic toads instruct them

about the Ground Way

of Being:

“Breathe

sweet summer rain

through leaf and root,

translucent skin.

We are all related.

Sing to the Earth

And S/he will comfort you.

Breathe …”

 

 

Working notes:

 

When I saw this picture that my friend Iren took of herself I knew that a poem would be forthcoming because I was struck by meaning at least for me. Iren sits amongst tree roots. I catch toads. We are both dealing with uncertainty, transitions, and deaths of one sort or another.

 

Trees are, above all, protectors sheltering the living from storms; even when uprooted they provide comfort. Under their gracious canopies new life begins…

 

In myth toads are almost always associated with women, older women in particular. Sometimes wise woman. Neolithic toad images are associated with death and signify the capacity for new birth. Toads live on the edge.

 

Toads shed many skins during one lifetime ingesting them in the process. This peculiar toad habit of eating one’s one skin after shedding it suggests to me the wisdom of not trying to escape one’s past. Being able to let go while incorporating what was into the present as part of the whole is a paradox, but one worthy of our attention.

 

The key to moving through transitions is to breathe through them, to stay as much in the present as possible, to be flexible, to know when to hide out, “to bend like a willow and flow like a river” (the latter phrase belongs to Iren).

I capitalize the word Nature to emphasize the importance of allowing the natural world to teach us how to become more human. We are the youngest species on the planet and definitely the one most lacking in wisdom.

4 thoughts on “Two Friends

  1. I came across your writings today and now it is 2pm and I have accomplished nothing that I set out to do today (so far)… I can’t think of a better way to have spent the day. I am from Northern New Mexico (Santa Clara) and am visiting soon – I cannot wait! Thank you for sharing your perspective of the land and the people. Your gift of words is beautiful, thank you.

    Like

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