Yesterday a turkey hen stepped out from the woods while I was planting, and when I turned to better see, I noticed she had ten or twelve chicks.
They were small, about the size of a nose, say, brownish-tan, and they dashed about on invisible legs beneath their mother’s belly and likewise around her legs.
Around and around, in and out, in sync already with gravity, with locomotion, with speed, and most especially, with vulnerability, the long arm of vulnerability.
The hen, head high, clucking just so as she navigated through my stash of firewood, the chicks attached to her clucks as with strings.
But on such small legs?
On day one to be mustered through the tangle on such legs?
Imagine if every adult in America sat on a rock each morning and listened or prayed or studied their ankles. 6 minutes, say. Or, to splurge a bit, imagine if every adult likewise attended each morning a garden of carrots and spinach. 6 minutes, say. What would come of 300 million folks sitting/gardening each morning for 12 minutes? 12 minutes with soul and earth only?
Art: Kerry Buck
Because even with seven billion of us notwithstanding, there’s always enough anxiety. And because barefooted, she’s noticed, is how lettuces do it. No matter the winds, the suns, the mid-morning spiders, no matter the hails that slice them down…it’s always earth they reach for, their tiny toes pushing down down. And kind earth, ever longstanding, holds them. That’s why, see. That holding. That’s why she so often stands barefooted with lettuces.