Copyright © by P. R. Lowe May 12, 2010
The phone rings like a shot from another world, piercing my heart and sending electric juices from my spine out to my extremities; especially my legs, that are left floating between the bed sheets like a jelly fish in dead water. I must move, I must get up. But I cannot. I feel weak and misplaced.
Morning crept over the ridges of the mountains and crawled over the pillows, lighting the house with dim shapes and long shadows and I found myself still desiring darkness and the comfort of covers that lay soft against my ears and neck; some sort of wintry snugly-ness that seems ill fitted to the season; that it may protect me from these sporadic jolts of electric adrenalin, that leave me feeling as if a wild fire has savaged the forests of my veins and nerves.
Sometimes they are delivered by some sort of device attached to a grid; a phone, a television, a computer, even a refrigerator that has chosen to hum in an otherwise silent kitchen and I inadvertently begin to avoid these things, much to the chagrin of my present life, which has unwittingly become so dependant upon them. Sometimes these jolts wake me in the night, from a source I cannot name, usually between 3:15 a.m. and 5;30 a.m., often leaving me like the floating jellyfish (one that has traveled many seas during the night), or my nerves and sinews feel stretched so taut that I might burst from their restrictiveness. Sometimes it is painful, but not like a pain that I am familiar with. I feel like a witless conduit.
I could have sworn it was May, yet September has been in the house and in the hollow. Last night I had the heat on, having returned from a job site, chilled to the bone from cold rain and dampness, that I do not ever recall being owned by spring. I had excellent intentions of working all day, of catching up, (been feeling that for about two years now) but felt too weak to even light a fire in the fireplace. A fire in May? Catch up to what?
Today the temps have shot back up to seventy five. The saplings seem doubtful of when to rise or sink, tomato plants sit in pots wondering whether to grow or go and I find myself pondering a trip to town to purchase batteries, candles and lamp oil, even though the weather here is beautiful. Perhaps the day is too pretty and calm, with an underlying stillness akin to the eye of a tornado. No earthquakes, floods, or oil spills here. So why do I feel as though I cannot trust it? As if there may be something I might need that may not be available. I do not listen to mass media, subscribe to magazines, news sites, or newspapers, so my anticipations come from a perplexing authority.
Lately there has been a fist that seems to reach out of the ether and grip its fingers around my heart, just to get my full attention. At first it feels like fear, but in reasoning, I realize that I am not afraid and the fist comes from a place less known. It is entirely something else. My head fills up with things that I could fill this day with, yet none of them feel wholly relevant to my experience in being here now. Everything has shifted. Most are familiar things that I have done in the past and some are things I might do at some time in the future, but the fist holds me in now and all I can do is that which is before me, then that is gone and something else is before me.
The ground no longer seems solid, the literal earth beneath my feet no longer feels sure. Relationships, once easy, now seem more daunting, and relationships that once seemed a test now seem to flow with greater ease. There are a quadrillion bits of information mating and producing more bits and I sometimes feel I hear and see them all: no one thing but everything. At least I seem to be absorbing the feel of it all, and sometimes, as George Harrison once said, “It’s all too much.”
Thus, I sometimes feel like I might be “coming down with something” , “getting sick”, or just plain “tired” with no real justification for it. Yet, I am not sick, and that too becomes something else entirely: new ground, uncharted territory. I walk away from the house and into the woods, and legs, once wobbly and unsure become stronger as I go, moving purely on the power of my own intention, from a place I’ve never been before. In the distance, the spring peepers, usually crooning closer to eventide, send up a trill in the middle of the warm afternoon, then stop as suddenly as they began. Are they unsure, as well?
The sky suddenly blackens and a rumble fills the sky, cracks of lightening bounce through the trees and I hurry to the seeming safety of a home, in a storm I knew was imminent, yet somehow chose to ignore.