September 5, 2012 9:08am


The air and landscape at the beach reflect a clarity that is almost impossible to hold with your senses. The colors of fall unfolding in the wetlands is subtle but stunning. Sitting in the middle of the dock, reading Wisdom from the Apocrypha. Lovely words gather round lifting the soul into light and letting the spirit lead. “Reason is a spark kindled by the beating of our hearts.” Emphasizing how fleeting our existence is, how the body returns to dust and spirit dissolves into empty air, she admonishes, “everywhere leave signs of enjoyment”.

A butterfly grazing in these grasses believes. At least she is affording some great measure of fun as I gaze at her pausing on a pussy willow. I’ve heard that butterflies inspire and expire by moving their wings. If that is so, then this one read the book  about meditation relaxation because she is only expiring once or twice every half minute. Exquisite lifting and pulling back of her wings, she melts into the stalk on which she perches, merged into that setting so that one can barely make out her location. You almost had to see her land to glimpse her in that state. We want to be like that, I thought. Resting, lightly breathing into the world.

A dragonfly followed me around this weekend. Flew into my car, refusing to leave. Landed on my finger and laid there happily for quite a while even though I had to go because I was late. That dragonfly would have nothing to do with me being on time. Finally, I had to blow lightly until she flew away.

Dragonflies skimming the water symbolize going beyond, moving away from what is on the surface and delving deeper. They can move in six directions at once. Hovering like a helicopter, moving their wings only 30 times a minute, they fly up, down, backwards and forwards. Simple, effective and with twenty times the power of most other insects. Their iridescence symbolizes the end of self created illusions, shedding the mask and removing doubts of one’s own identity.  Perhaps most amazing of all is that 80% of the dragonfly’s brain is dedicated to it’s sight. They can see 360 degrees around, symbolizing the ability to see beyond self.

Recently, I revisited a memoir/poem/short story written about the tragic death of a friend of my son’s. Paintings of the week of our mourning surround me as I type. On this the fifth anniversary of her death, she calls to me to share her story. That unspeakable day my son told me of her demise, a dragonfly stayed all night, buzzing around my bedroom, both of us awake in disbelief. Days before she died of meningitis, she told my son that if she only lived another week, she would have no regrets. They even quibbled about who would go first, thinking at the time how ridiculous that was. They were only twenty. I think I ‘m going to live like she did, without regrets, eyes darting 360 degrees, hovering like a helicopter, firing into the now and the future at the same time while allowing myself to back up as necessary. I want to be like that. Don’t you?

And we end where we began with Wisdom, coming to advise that “in the Knowing we are always together, always working for the same purpose.” I feel this loving girl with no regrets working within me for our purpose, trusting her to guide our way.


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