Tuesday, October 7, 2008

Over the Hills and Far Away

When I was a we'en, I ran like the wind, liking nothing better than the feel of my heart pounding, the rushing of blood through my veins. Through the forests and over the hills, gulping leaf and moss scented air--this alive--I reverted to the wild in me, to the voice that whispered the same soft rustling as the sun-tipped leaves. I drank the air and light and sound of this un-human world, sustenance and protection against the mundane life that I awoke to every morning.

This is how I survived my childhood and the pains I couldn't bear. I ran them away, over hill and dale, letting the gasping of the effort blow them away.

But, we grow old and we grow slow and we no longer hear the wind that calls our name. Responsibility makes its weighty appearance. Age stomps in and demands decorum. We buckle and fold and forget the sunshine days.

Or do we?

Somewhere deep inside of me, on quiet nights, I can hear her wild howling--my wild miss--lurking in me still behind my many faces. Yesterday, like any other day, I drove the winding road home from work. The breeze snuck in my window and settled just under the edge of my skin. I put on workout clothes and stomped to the basement to lift weights. There was no room in the basement, a project had all the items from one locale leaking over into my exercise space. I dragged back up the stairs, longing for the rush of blood.

The door burst open and the wind blew in, "Run with me," she said.

"I'm going for a walk," I announced and of course they wanted to come.

Three tall lassie's and one fine lad. We dressed in shorts and tank-tops, laced our shoes, and out we went...walking.

I didn't know then that the wild in me had been born in my brood, but the hills knew their names, and called to their swift feet, away they went, galloping, a herd of two-footers and I forged after them. We dodged the trees and leapt over rocks and fallen logs. They laughed like clear water and bobbed through the rippled light, fairy-beacons, frolicking, guiding me on the path back to myself.

And the wild one laughed and is laughing still.


MamaBhavani said...

You painted a beautiful picture La. I can feel the wind and hear the cenipede tennis shod feet and see the shadows of fall passing by.

lakshmi said...

Thanks, Mom!

Poorna said...

ok, now i've read them all, am up to date...and could not be more delighted. So much of you, so often. It is truly a gift to be able to write like this...with a voice so strong and clear it can be heard from all walks of life. While I feel blessed to be able to find your writing here, I am more convinced than ever that it belongs in books and magazines. The good news is, there is no choice to be made...you can have it all!!! I can't wait for the next post...and my eyes are peeled for that desk.

lakshmi said...

Thank God I have you. My fingers are positively itching to get back to my book. I've been trying to rush N through the projects so I at least have a sliver of time to dedicate to poor Alison and Dustin. I've gotten Madi's old cast-off desk for the moment. It may not be brilliant, but it carries the lap-top just fine. I know you know, but I would not be writing without you.
Love you!!!

Sraddha Van Dyke said...

Book? There's a book? When can i read it???

Your writing is nothing less than stunning. Stumbling upon your blog is a blessing for me.

This piece, "Over the Hills and Far Away" took me back to one magical moment in my own childhood, i was, maybe, 8 or 9...a very sad, lonely kid. But, this one day, for some reason, some kind of wind magic happened for me too...i remember running as if there were no gravity holding me down, it was amazing. The memory of that moment kept me going for years afterward, through many very difficult experiences. Thank you for awakening that memory for me again.

lakshmi said...

Now you're making me cry! It is magic, isn't it? I was ecstatic to see it blossoming unfettered in my children.

You should know that you are exactly why I started this blog. To share, to explore, to post what we're working on, to just have the chance to be a part of someone else's world and dreams, and to have a place to come and celebrate this crazy journey deep into ourselves.

It is so nice to have you here.