I wake with a head full of the usual doubts and concerns
which, watered with attention,
will grow to be fears and worries,
fed with consideration,
will blossom into anxiety and despair,
which, given time,
will bear the fruit of anguish and terror.
So, I throw clothes on my body
boots on my feet,
grab lead, treats and little black bags,
step outside and walk.
But, still, my mind sits in its own house,
wrapped in a blanket of ideas,
warmed by the flames of speculation,
poking itself with a stick,
reluctant to come into the cold light.
So, my dog leads me to a field’s corner,
besides a bench,
beneath a canopy of limes.
Becomes a statue of a dog.
Ears alert. Listening.
A single paw raised. Waiting.
Eyes fixed. Watching.
Only the nose moves. Searching for clues.
Her entire being focused on this mound of fresh earth,
carried up to the day by a creature smaller than my thumb.
A creature who lives in a world of perpetual darkness,
a solid world.
An unforgiving world where every step must be mined
all progress excavated
its story told in the trail of little hills of below growing above.
“Pay attention to this,” says my dog.
“This is important. There are lessons to be learned here.”
And the members of the nearby bowling club have begun to worry.
After two days of rain
this morning is blue sky.
The sun is warm and, as I labour up the side path on Windmill Hill,
I sweat and begin to worry about my failing health.
So, the dogs makes me stop and notice a small tree.
Unimpressive, unremarkable, almost lost amongst taller neighbours.
The dog busies herself in the undergrowth
and I notice that on a single limb
the crisp, brown remains of winter leaves, plus
new plumes of foliage, erupting from freshly broken buds,
so vividly green they seem to glow.
So, as I stand on Windmill Hill, enjoying the warmth of the fire of May sun,
a man, composed mainly of water, standing on a planet, composed mainly of water,
I am reminded that such beauty exists only at a fine balance
between Fire and Water,
Sun and Rain.
Too much Fire and we burn in an inferno
Too much Water and we drown in flood.
Life is a Dance of Sun and Rain.
This humble tree holds Life and Death
together in its branches.