Risking Cakes (call and response)

I run the two miles along bottomland as fast as I can, declining all offers of ridesbacktotown from church ladies driving home from the Lords Acre Sale.

I coast to a stop at the second bridge, bend in half as the river air works its way in and the chat rock quiets beneath my shoes.  Two hands on a fence post, I lift up and over the chain link, lower myself into underbrush and hike toward the tracks.  A Great Blue Herron flies even with the tree line on my right.  Halved bodies of rabbits and dogs, separated midline by railroad steel, are perfectly spaced along wooden ties to the left.

The juxtaposition of flight and death assaults my sense of fairness.  I consider Montaigne in his floppy hat, suggesting death be greeted as a friend, and ask aloud if the Herron let the Rabbit know.

I hike back through the pasture to my brother’s truck, swinging across broad ditches with handfuls of willow.  The arrhythmic rattle of his beer cans in the truck bed ignites my imagination on the drive back to town.  I steer with my knees while my hands feel behind me for the book I stashed the last time I borrowed the old Ford.  I finger through dirtroaddust pages for Dostoevski’s lament about fatal fantastic elements, and accept the sabotage of wanting what doesn’t exist, on purpose, to thwart myself.

I resign my effort to engage in epistolary exchange with someone who interests me and entertains me and provokes me to considerate thought.

I forfeit the plea for someone to rivet me, dammit.

I return home.

Read a letter from a newfound Friend.


4 Responses to “Risking Cakes (call and response)”

  1. Anonymouse Says:

    When someone teaches the Clancy classic class, I will take it if I’m able,until then I will keep reading and treasure what’s been written, but not always reply because the experience is above articulation. Amesegnalehu.

  2. Susan Carver Williams Says:

    I am blown away. Vivid and sensual imagery of the setting. But the inward look … ah. Your ability to say so much so succintly continues to amaze me. When you publish the your Collected Wisdom, I want a signed copy.

  3. I am honored to have been the call to bring on this response. The world is both beautiful and ugly, depending on the direction we choose to look. It is half Great Blue Heron and halved dogs and rabbits.

    The Heron calls. It’s whether or not we take the time to listen and to look out, right?

    Sitting on the tracks with you,

    Born in the year of the Rabbit

  4. I have to admit, I chuckled knowingly, sad I know, at the image of the heron possibly letting the rabbits in on the idea of death as a friend.

    It was like a what-can-you-do shrug using my guts and diaphram. And what Julia said.

    The chuckle died when I came across the desire for things we either cannot find or don’t exist. Yes. The chuckles went the way of the rabbit.

    The rabbits and dogs don’t have to do any more, they can rest. The heron must continue to look for food, find a mate, build nests, could perhaps injure itself and suffer greatly. Not that I wish that. It’s simply that it still lives and those things are hazards of that state.

    I feel like I babbled. This piece has opened a deep place in me.

    But what I appreciate about you, one of the many, many things there are to love about you, inside you, is the hope you bring at the very end.

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