February 28 – The Stones at Chimayo – Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening
“I’d rather learn from one bird how to sing than to teach ten thousand stars how not to dance.” E.E. Cummings
On the way to Chimayo, a woman saw two Spanish farmers repositioning the stones in a riverbed to redirect the flow; she felt compelled to help. She had the feeling the this had been done for centuries – their mothers and fathers, their grandmothers and grandfathers, each in their own time and way, picking up the same stones pushed out by the storm or drought and putting them back so the water can continue.
It seems this is the never ending work of relationship, each of us in our own time and way moving the stones between us, repositioning the heavy things that get in the way, so the life of feeling can continue.
The weather of simply living jams things up, and we, like every generation before us, must roll up our pants and sleeves, step into the river, and unclog the flow. Of course, we need to ask, What are the stones pushed about between us? What are the heavy things that keep getting in the way?
No doubt, they are infinite and particular, but often, they are made of habits of not: not seeing, not hearing, not feeling, not being present, not risking the truth, not risking the heart’s need to live out in the open.
That we close off, jam up, spill over, and dry up are all part of being human in the gravity of time. That we feel compelled to stop and help even strangers move the heavy thing out of the way is an impulse known as love.