When I finally reached the path along the bluff, I felt faint and dizzy. I wondered if I was going to topple all the way to the bottom. Nothing there to stop me. Alone and desperate, I decided to start singing….
Oh Lord, you're beautiful. Your face is all I see. And when your eyes are on this child, your grace abounds to me.
Tears streamed down my face as I tried to breathe calmly. A young man suddenly appeared in front of me. He looked back with the kindest eyes and said, you're going to get some great pictures. And disappeared. He wore a stocking cap.
Historic Ebey's Landing - Whidbey Island, Washington
Our little neighbor girl - the one who knocks on the door wondering if we can do art - came over to show me a craft she had done at school.
Craig let her in the door to my bedroom. She finds me having a dark day in bed with cramps and a heating pad. She climbs up, starts to get under the covers then wiggles out as she sees the gallon jar of buttons sitting on the nightstand. I tell her some of them were my grandmother's, and when I was little I spent many happy hours sorting and looking at them.
I ask her if she wants to play with them. She says, sure, this jar isn't heavy for a strong girl like me - lugs it over to the bed, unscrews the lid and dumps it upside down.
We spend slow time picking out big brown boulders, greens for leaves and grass, and brightly colored ones for flowers. She makes a button garden path across my white bedspread. We take a chatty stroll.
I tell her it's time to go - we need to clean up - then I'm going to finish my movie.
She asks if she can watch it with me. No, it is in French and you probably wouldn't like it or understand it.
Well, I speak French and my teacher calls me her gold nugget, she says. I burst into a belly laugh that displaces my cramps and makes me hemorrhage. You are my gold nugget too, Paige. I agree completely with your teacher.
Say joi de vivre, Paige. She repeats it - copying my poor accent.
That is French. It means joy of life. You have the joy of life, girl. I'm so glad you come and share it with me.
I know, she says as she climbs down, tosses her curls, gets her boots on, and leaves.
You're the Teacher's gold nugget, too, and he's always glad when you dance into the room. You being there makes his eyes twinkle.
I'm finally comfortable riding my bike fourteen miles without stopping.
I'm learning how to shift smoothly, right before I need the change.
I'm enjoying the trail, able to notice the flora and fauna -- while breathing simultaneously.
I'm no longer a heavy drag on Craig.
I'm not noticing any difference in my weight or body structure. This matters not.
I'm feeling the warmth creep into my muscles, and anticipate it.
I'm looking forward to that G-Spot on the trail. The part where sacred waits for me to return.
I always yell as loud as possible -- I LOVE YOU GOD -- with no hands.
The deer, eagles, mice, rabbits, slugs, and woodpeckers stop everything - concurring with holy silence.
Then He breathes on me his pleasure. I feel it begin on the top of my head. It drips over me like a
wide nozzled shower head, covering all of me.
I hesitate to confess -- my brain throbs in time with my swollen heart and tingling skin. My body melts.
Great sobs of joy erupt, enlarging my rib cage. Tears blind me. I can barely breathe.
It's alright, because in that place on the trail I find myself clinging to Someone else, a tandem tangle.
where bleached, separated, modified, manipulated grain grown
in lifeless, weedless ground is blamed for
glucose intolerance in pasta, pastry, and bread,
where women ruin their eyesight with lash extensions,
deform their mouths with duck lip injections, and try to make
down there look like an airbrushed pubescent girl,
where women think large lumpy breasts, rump lifts, liposuction, and
facelifts are necessary for self focused happiness, and lovely brown skin
dies trying to bleach itself white.
Go ahead and cook your brains -- straighten your dyed, curly hair, watch TV until you forget how to converse, swing your marriage, don’t die of natural causes - let chemo and radiation take your last dollar and your last vista view. Throw away all your books, give up your guns, immunize your babies, get a flue shot every year, take fluoride on all fronts, soak your house in formaldehyde, let it preserve your body when you die, cover the ocean in a layer of plastic soup, melt the glaciers, buy another car, just try to poison the super duper yellow jackets, fleas, giant wasps, try to cure the lyme disease epidemic, let the government shut down, bake a turkey that lives with 20,000 others in a cesspool barn gasping for light and fresh air, eat tasteless eggs, and BBQ beef that smells like feces.
I’m feeling partly paralyzed and completely confused by what is allowed and disallowed. Approved of and not approved of. It seems all turned around crazy. We're upside down, backwards, topsy turvy, and inside out.
I want to be a dangerous expedition hungry adventurer who’s not of afraid going where there be dragons. I wish I could get ahold of one of those old maps so I knew what direction to head off toward.
I can’t, so I’m just going to follow Over the Rhine to Nowhere Farm, where they left the edges wild.
Meet Me At The Edge Of The World could start the next revival, become the latest manifesto, start the newest trend. But it won't, because most people are more afraid of dragons.