The more I step out onto the trail, the more I learn what it means to “See.” This excites me, and makes me want to spend more and more time out “there”…which in truth, allows me to spend more and more time, in “here”…meaning, myself: exploring my struggles, my quests, my stories, my characters, my progression, my lapses, my tug-of-wars, my journey…whatever it is that I need to understand more clearly, or see more sharply. Being “out there” allows me to get lost in the cerebral sense…and even at times, the literal sense:) I love when this happens (mostly…the literal getting lost I mean…tho sometimes it can bring on a certain state of panic!) because it is when we “get lost” that we begin to look deeper, out of necessity – in order to “un-lose” ourselves. And this act of looking deeper, in truth, becomes the exquisite act of Seeing.
For a writer, the act of Seeing is crucial, for it is the “Aha!” moment – of when we tap into our characters’ narrative and understand why they are doing what they do, what it is they need, how we get them to where they are going, etc… it is a critical tool for the art of writing. And, I fully believe that time spent wandering in the outdoors, helps to sharpen our ability to see more fully, richly, and with greater insight.
Last week, on one of my favorite trails behind my home, I happened to look down at just the right moment…and there was this sleek beauty. Never even knew that Horned Lizards existed in the hills behind us – it was a fortunate moment when I happened upon him, as though a gift from the gods. It made me wonder about all the things I don’t see…all the things I don’t hear, observe, notice, understand. This one small, fleeting moment, allowed me to undergo an expansion inside of me – an expansion that allows, and even looks for, the unknown, the unexpected, the impossible (though I have work to do yet on that one, for its allowance…like me becoming a writer who makes her living by her writing!). I ran into this lizard a couple days ago as well, and when I step out this afternoon, I will look for him again.
I think that time spent under the sky, on a quiet trail, alone – allows for internal expansion as a direct response to the expansion that our blue dome quietly delivers. I breathe more fully out on the trail, I hear my thoughts more clearly, and like my dog who runs ahead of me, happy to be free, with no leash binding him to me – so do my thoughts flee freely! I don’t always catch them, my thoughts that is…and this is perhaps a slight bummer, but I do believe that I catch the ones I was meant to catch.
As I write now, I’m serenaded by our very profuse mockingbird that sits on a telephone wire just above our garden. (She suddenly stopped as I wrote that sentence, as if she knows she has been made subject to this post:). haha). Funny, one of my first writing teachers spoke with little enthusiasm about the “damn” mockingbird that riddled her thoughts with noise noise noise all the day long! I guess that goes to show that perspective is everything, understanding is a wonderful companion, and music to some is noise to another…
Let it all come. And I will sift it through, out there on there trail.