I startle three hens under the lilac, one in her dust bath, the other two waiting for it. It is unforgivable of me, and they let me know. The air is thick with mist, which enters feather and hair, even bone. I did not want to rise up from my chair to get outside and walk. And neither does the hen want to budge from her comfortable hollow, scratched and dug out so she can bathe and rest.
. . . As we grow older
The world becomes stranger, the pattern more complicated
Of dead and living. . . . (T.S. Eliot, from East Coker, Four Quartets)
Something in me would happily go down to death sitting in this chair, living through the interior, letting go of the body. Mind and heart diving, connecting, deepening, finding light in the darkest places. They say that women grow introspective in their forties. Now I am in the waning fifties, and traveling inside, toward my original home, is still what I desire. If Home is where one starts from, as Eliot wrote, it is also where we go in the end. The body dallies and drags through to that. Even air heavily prohibits movement.
We must be still and still moving . . .
It seems that the first is difficult early in life, and the second later. Always the reversal, the seemingly opposing force that is waiting behind this present experience.