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We may know only it by the light

It’s taken years to figure out how to wear these bones whole. Now, they feel all mine, but days yet come when a missed rung on the playground ladder can break my clavicle the way it did when I was two. And still, there are places where the absence of noise and a vastness of shadowed corridors console as a mother’s touch. In the desert, space opens the door for time to spill outward into each crevice and canyon hollow. It passes, time, but we may know it only by the light chasing its own ghost across the desert valley into hushed amphitheaters and up the red stone walls like bloodhounds treeing a phantom coon. Continue reading We may know only it by the light

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In which you think you have time

I’m feeling all kinds of immense gratitude right now for the people in my life. This year started out rocky, and with a lot of loss in terms of wonderful human beings that left us before we got to do and say everything we intended with them—and of course, when do we ever reach that point, of it being enough? We don’t. We continue to re-learn the lesson, all of us, in that very awful hard way, that even though we think we have time, we so often don’t. Continue reading In which you think you have time

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Spring cleaning

I have one toe smeared on nothing and the other, where my shoe is starting to wear through, is mashed down on a paper-clip-thin nubbin–a hope and a prayer, really, are all they are while I contemplate my options: Traverse diagonally right, up the sloping ledge upon which my hands are struggling for a better grip, and sink my fingers into the vertical crack until I figure out what to do next, or fall. Fall far, on a red X4, a piece that I really only placed as a mental security blanket because (1) I’m still too new at this to run it out that far, but (2) the seam its cammed into walks the fine line between being a vaguely protectable crack and a joke.

Normally, I’d sit there and sabotage my own composure, running my fingers over the same dissatisfying options, getting too pumped, and ultimately try to downclimb to avoid the chance of a fall. And that’s on a bolted line! On the stuff that my brain knows will actually catch me.

But here I am. I’m still holding on. I don’t want to go back. I can do this.

Things shift. My inner voice is not screaming go down! anymore. It is replaced by a simple, rhythmic mantra. Everything else slips away. I am reduced to the sensation of my hands weighted on the grooves and divots of granite, my lungs taking in air, the strain in the arch of my feet.

Breathe. Move. Trust.

I lower my body weight, send electric waves of confidence from my brain into my desperate fingers, and ease out right toward the vertical fissure that will be my salvation and further from my last pitiful piece of pro.

I sink the finger jam. Things shift.

–little moments make big days // Leavenworth, WA