Alive to the Abundance #2

Sometimes in good weather after I’ve delivered Quetzal to school, I take the long way home. And often on these drives I pass an elderly man out for his morning walk. He’s close to ninety years, I’d say, bent and a bit shaky, but alert and still active.

This morning when I passed the man, he was standing in the grass just down the hill from his house. He was looking at something off in the distance. Curious, I slowed down to see, too. It was turkeys, four wild turkeys perched on a section of woven-wire fencing. Two were looking west towards road, and two were looking east towards the morning sun. The man, hearing my Jeep on the road behind him, turned slowly around, grinned, and jerked his thumb knowingly over his shoulder.

“Turkeys on a fence,” I said.

“Two both ways,” he said.

“Fore and aft,” I said.

“Fore and aft,” he said, laughing outright.

We looked a bit longer in silence, and then I waved and he waved, and then I drove slowly on. But now with a slight pain in my chest. Maybe you know what I’m referring to. That momentary discomfort that happens sometimes when life is too beautiful. Or too sad. Or too beautiful and sad at the same time.


Woodcut by Melvyn Evans

7 responses to “Alive to the Abundance #2

  1. Yeah, I know that feeling. I’m often struck by how much we miss out on by not fully acknowledging the connection between beauty and sadness.

  2. Very nice. Reminds me of Martin Prechtel’s Grief and Praise.

  3. Hello Someone. Yes to Martin Prechtel and his ideas and also to his connection to Guatemala, the birthland of my daughter Quetzal.

  4. This was Bee, Will. Not sure why WordPress decided to make me anonymous. Yes, Guatemala and then New Mexico too, enchanted earth we were touching last week and it was magical. The contrast of McDonalds and the colored Hopi, Zuni, and Navajo dressed folks getting a breakfast burrito. Sad and beautiful.

  5. Hello Bee. Yes, the “someone” is weird, It’s happened before. I’ve spent significant time in New Mexico and really appreciate the land, the people and spirit of the place. Love Taos. The Hopi folk doing McDonalds, the Amish folk doing kmart, yes, sad and beautiful. you are well. of this I am certain.

  6. Great writing — this reminds me of my own Vermont world — and a fantastic woodcut!

  7. Hello neighbor. I went looking for winter lettuce and found your evocative Plough Monday which nourished me much more than even the best salad might have. Ro think you are but a stone’s throw away from my cottage on Lower Deerfield Rd. Do you by the way have winter lettuce for sale
    Pat Savage

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