Copyright © February 15, 2010, by P. R. Lowe
I find myself engulfed in an old familiar feeling; discomfort in my heart/solar plexis area and feeling like I’ve been dropped into a vast and desolate desert without compass or companions, water, food or phone – – just the clothes on my back (and suddenly I am very grateful for even those). In the heart of a vast nothingness, I cup my hands over my eyes and scan the horizon in all directions. Nothing. No one. Nada.
So, I am left to wonder, “Do I start walking in the hope of finding someone to ask for help, for water, for directions? Or would it be safer for me to stay put, in the hope of being found? Maybe a helicopter will fly over and spot me, this little speck on the unending sand? Maybe someone will miss me, soon enough, and send out a search party? Maybe I might carve out a humongous SOS in the sand, that someone, somewhere in the skies, will see, or at least I might exhaust myself enough to collapse into sleep, where these wonderings no longer matter?
And if I start walking in search of comfort, which direction should I go? And if I choose the wrong direction how could I ever retrace my steps to where I started from? I rotate around in a circle, doing my best to feel something; maybe I will tune into some innate radar and it will guide me and save me. Or do I surrender to the void and give up what ever control I may have thought I had before I came to this place.
And if the sun beats down on my head until I think it might be intolerable and I feel the urge to cry out or complain, who will hear? Who will reverberate back what I am sending out. Who will I bounce this ball of reactionary reflex to and from, again and again until the game becomes the reason to for our being? Who will validate my choice to “stay put” or start walking? and who will reinforce the direction I choose?
I plop down on the sand, weary of thinking at all, except for one last ditch effort to save my control of the situation, ” Maybe I will just give up right here, right now and simply die or at least fall asleep, pass out or perhaps forget where I am.”
So I lay in stillness, for what seems like eons, but is probably more like a split second – – until my thinking at last ceases and my mind, as well as the dessert, are completely empty and quiet. They become the same. One and the same.
Then seemingly out of nowhere a scant breeze, barely perceivable, scuttles across the sand like a feathery gnat, gently moving the flap of my shirt tail and causing my nose to itch from the grit of it’s brief passing. I open my eyes again, for what feels like the first time, and see where I really am. And I remember doing this before, and I remember I am not alone nor have I ever been. And I say, “Who then, who?”
And the small breeze whispers in a song, “You, then. You.”