Thursday, December 11, 2008

Walk With You


Vientiane, Laos – A five kilometer walk was necessary to justify not the dinner, but the dessert afterward. One must stay focused upon one’s walk, primarily because of the conditions of the darkened avenues, uneven cobblestones and broken concrete, sometimes gaping holes.

A person could twist an ankle, wrench a knee, go off the deep end, or lose themselves in a black bottomless pit.

Three-meter stride in vertical alignment, concentrating on no more than the next step, forgotten memories and obscured future, dungeons and temples, but of here and now, connecting with children, the vendor, the beggar, the forlorn dog. To walk in confident peace, grace and humility, a heart of gratitude, to wonder at each of these, god’s amazing creatures.

Would it be heaven to sustain such a blissful state, but for the complexities of the walk, intertwining circumstance and probability, reason and emotion, fear and love. And how would you define it?

Withdrawn in the monk's contemplation, walking steadfastly toward an assured destination, but how could we know where. In and out of orbits, transiting in synchronicity for a lifetime, a few years, sometimes just a meal, a conversation, a laugh.

What was it we shared? What was its significance? What was it we wanted? What were we willing to give? What were we willing to accept? An energy exchange at one level or another, we experience the other, a reflection of self, in relationship, seeing who we are.

And what were the connections, our intersection in time and space? What commonality, what desire, what drive, what fate occurrence? And then departure, a comet, a passing asteroid, a supernova, a black hole. Jupiter retreats and Neptune advances. Driven by the past and drawn to the future, one must be careful of the unlit avenues, the uneven cobblestones, the broken concrete, taking care to focus upon each step.

I imagined you, my friend, sitting across from me at dinner, working on a poem, this story, and then afterward, having this conversation, taking this walk, your shadow beside me, missing your presence.