Monday, February 23, 2009

Walking the Labyrinth

Since the labyrinth is only a few yards from the hospital where HP is, not in very good situation right now, much concern about the heart, no activity allowed at all, drifting in and out of clarity, I thought I'd walk it today.

Ages since I was there, and since it was bright sun, though very cold, it was a good time to walk. As you probably know, it's a form of walking meditation, the labyrinth being a curving path that makes all kinds of u-turns, brings you in to the center, and you continue on the same path, until it brings you out again. You move very slowly and deliberately,looking at the few inches ahead, or at your feet, and today was a very intense experience.

I usually present the labyrinth (or myself, whichever it is) with the current problem or question, then move slowly to the center, pause a while, leave a stone or any little object I find on the path, then slowly out to the end, then wait a minute looking back at the labyrinth. And I have never failed to emerge with new help or thoughts.

Today seemed to be full of metaphors. Across the path at one point, two branches had fallen in parallel, like a miniature bridge to cross, but you had to cross it -- you are all about gentle forward movement at this time. It was hard to lift my foot just a few inches to cross that bridge, whatever it meant. On the path I found three litle pieces of beach glass, two green, one clear, which I picked up to place when I got to the center. And I only just now realize they were glass versions of the diamond and emerald enagement ring HP gave me 48 years ago, too tiny for my finger now, but resting in a little white kid purse in my jewelry box.

And the squirrels had been at the Tibetan prayer flags again -- they are low enough you have to bend to get under them, after the squirrels have finished their acrobatics on the line, so that happened several times on the walk. At the center, I leaned against the tree that protects it, then placed my beach glass in a hollow rock, then after a pause, began to wind my way out again. And felt so much calmer and more accepting when I left. I got some answers.

It reminded me of that quotation in Bird by Bird (Anne Lamott's book on writing) where she says another writer, whose name escapes me, commented that writing a book, and, I might add, living a life, is like driving at night: you can only see as far as the immediate ground your headlights show you, but you can still get there anyway.

So that's what I wish. That, whatever our destination, Handsome Partner and I can get there,even if we can only see a few minutes ahead right now.


  1. I wish it for you as well. Love the metaphors.

  2. Beautiful metaphoric happenings indeed ... and a wise way to receive them - as the gifts of hope they should be. A few minutes ahead sounds really good right now.


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