Tell me about your visit to Vilcabamba
What did you notice?
the low-flying sparrow;
the sweet-hungry ants;
the uproar of mice in the underbrush;
the tin music of the cricket’s body;
What did you hear?
The thrush greeting the morning;
a breeze brushing reeds,
The deep valley of silence.
What did you admire?
The almost liquid
beauty of the flowers;
bamboo marching so slowly
you barely notice.
What would you like to see again?
My dog Riley: his energy and exuberance, his willingness,
his language beyond all nimbleness of tongue,
his sweetness, his proud stride, his burly goatee,
his shining eyes
What was most wonderful?
The sea, and its wide shoulders;
the sea and its triangles;
the sea rising on crests of air
the sea lying back on its long athletic spine.
What do you think is happening?
The green breast of the hummingbird;
the wet face of the lily;
the bright, puckered knee of the broken oak;
the red tulip of a cat’s mouth;
Waves of green
the frayed sleeve of hard rain—
All to shake us from our sleep.
…with thanks to Mary Oliver.