Arid is not a word I use much in writing. That word belongs to places like San Diego, Texas and Arizona. My expressions are full of words that drip and hold moisture. Just the mention of Oregon has people looking for umbrellas, rain boots and fleece jackets. But not today.
Today children play in the fountains – air conditioners are turned up. The highway is full of trailered boats and the vacation minded. I love it! The sun hits the hammock every morning between 10 and 10.30, so I stop whatever I am doing, strip down and soak warmth into my bones. My face has turned a chocolate brown making my white hair and blue eyes pronounced. I feel healthy again and whole. I greet and celebrate the sun as fully as my neighbor repels it by pulling her shades and planting hawthorne trees.
I’ve gone rafting on the Sandy River every summer for the past 36 years, but this year, I wonder if I’ll make it. I have no visiting granddaughters to entertain, no husband to float with and friends with occupied schedules. I’ll travel out of state during prime rafting weeks and have promised John – my marketing guy – that I will hold up my end when I return.
This summer feels different, quiet and withdrawn, a time for regeneration and slowing down to regroup. My need for introspection asks for patience.
Late afternoon light streams through the front window in amber shafts, spilling over my writing pad. I’m held in an almost perfect moment. Preludes enhance the mood like black stones in a Zen garden. A single grace note on a piano keyboard dancing near the ceiling is sweet beyond words, sweet beyond imagining.
Writing is my salvation and faith. I feel relief as words spill out of me and land safely on the page, ready to take a life of their own. I dress them up like children who are going off into the world without me. I give them my best efforts so they will journey well. These words are not scholarly, information driven, political or unique. It is my heart that speaks. I write letters to undiscovered friends, sending them off like paper boats on a river, saying hello to people I have yet to meet.