A Medicine Walk At Love’s Turning Point
by Michelle Katz
Walking into the dusk, watching all things lose its distinct form in those last moments of thin yellow light along the horizon. The distractions were everywhere: people laughing and talking loudly on their porches, crickets taking over background noise, the sounds of a man rolling his trashcan to the edge of the driveway. But I chose to keep my eye on my dog, this small quiet creature that so deeply embodies love, with her little red light on her collar guiding the way for me in the soon-to-be-dark. We sat in 3 spots before knowing we found the right one to watch the darkness ease into the sky. The sounds began to hush as the darkness came, reveal that the main event was the night sky, for which we all hush to take in the show. The moon, in its crescent form, hide behind a tree from where I sat, the dark silhouette of the tree only further revealed her brightness. And I knew the moment I would stand up I would see all of her, even the parts in shadow could not help but be seen. I thought about my brightness, my wholeness, what can be noticed and seen in dark times?
The shadow form of all things surrounding me, as I sit in the arroyo, seemed larger than life, as if I stepped into Wonderland, and suddenly I was a small creature. I had shrunk, and all the mushrooms and shrubs of nature’s floor were bigger than me. I felt I was in a sweet but infinitesimal part of the world. The small amount of light of the night sky shined through the branches of a tree with a dense canopy. The branches created a web I knew I could just fly into and get caught, as I was hoping to reach that cloud-like soft top. Feeling my doubt of not leaping to fly high enough. I recalled my experience of climbing trees, always having a moment of fear and getting stuck in a spot, fear or uncertainty paralyzing me in taking the next step.
I then noticed that two of the same species of plant sat on either side of me. A sweet delicate tall grass. On my left, the one stood tall and straight. On my right, the one arched and bended toward the other, right over my head. I thought of their relationship. One bends toward the other that won’t. I wondered what makes each one the way it is, and how it seemed unbalanced. They both seemed to sway in the soft breeze of the night but then take their usual stance. And as I began to wonder if the straight tall grass would ever find its way to be more flexible, my dog, with all her embodiment of love, who since that moment was seated to my right, below the arching grass, found her way, with her bright red light to sit on my left causing that straight branch to bend just slightly. And then she got up and began to sniff the base of the grass causing it to bend even deeper toward me and grass that so wished to meet it. I thought about how only love can truly makes us bend.
When I rose from my seat, I felt a pain in my butt, I must have sat on a small stone, but I thought it appropriate, sometimes love has us in pain, and we often don’t notice it, until we do and it walks with us, and we hope to walk it off in time. I followed the love light down the arroyo home, now fully dark and silent but for the crickets that seemed to match the pace of the red light of love. The dark was more dark now, and the cool more deeply felt on the skin, and this embodiment of love, glowing along the path seemed to never walk in a straight line, but rather moved side to side as she guided the way, though she stayed closer on the path home in the darkness and cold.
We returned home, and for the first time I turned my headlamp on, and rolled the trash and recycling to the curb. Watching my dog dance in circles at the event. Turned my headlamp off, and looked up at the big dipper in all its glory, guiding me home, as a red plane light moved its way into the dipper’s center.
It is only a matter of time before a loving relationships meets a challenge. When it happens, something important is revealing itself, as we feel unraveled in our hearts and heads. We must choose how to meet this unraveling, as love changes form. Do we wish to get distracted by the small things? Or be guided by our hearts? Do we want to focus on one thing or the bigger picture? How do we see each other’s wholeness through dark times? How do we get caught in the web of fear when we so wish and long for the loving soft touch? Can we come to see that things are not always as they seem? Can love help us bend to meet each other? And if so, what is the method we use to help us do that? As it gets darker and colder, do we have a love that stays close and helps us find our way home though it may not be a straight route? Regardless, if traveled together, is it not a route worth taking? At the end of it all, can we turn the light on, on what is no longer needed and let it be discarded, taken to the curb so love can dance joyfully again? Can we be guided home by the north star as the light of love flies into the center of “The Great Bear”?