Thursday, December 21, 2017

Vignette #2

We had gone to the park to break sticks. The hawk too, had gone to the park, probably to hunt for
squirrels, but I like to think it had been there waiting for us. We didn't know what we were walking into,
only that we had to go. Sam was angry, and I was following his lead, not quite touching my own anger
enough, but I knew it was there too, waiting. We looked for a spot away enough for the ritual, for the
release --in the park, but also in the forest. That's when I saw its eyes peering at me from a high
distant branch. The hawk was watching us. We had arrived.

I remember thinking it would fly away if we got too close, but we kept climbing up the small hill,
nearer and nearer until we were just feet away. The hawk didn't alter its gaze or fly to a different tree.

The ritual began.

Sam found some dead branches and we started stomping and breaking, thrashing and grunting. His
anger fueled mine, and we both let it come flowing forth out of our minds, into our body, out of our body,
into the earth while the hawk watched with steady eyes.
We were lost in our own self importance, grunting like animals,
we didn't even realize that the small boys were watching too.
They kept walking closer, slightly ahead of their mom, gazing up at us
with the same steadiness as the hawk.
Finally, they stumbled up the hill towards us. “Excuse me” the smallest one said, “what are you doing?”
''Oh you know, just breaking sticks." I replied.

Suddenly everything felt incredibly holy and also incredibly silly. I explained to the boys' mother
we were there making weird animal noises and stomping and shaking branches as therapy.
She seemed to understand.
The boys had already understood.

And the hawk was there still staring, wondering -- what took you so long?

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