My spontaneous thought, upon waking and looking out the window at the weather: ahhh, a lovely walk in the drenching rain today. This wasn't sarcasm – it seemed like welcome weather, for whatever reason, I wanted to walk in the wet. Spring is slow coming into my woods and rain will add fresh interest, surprise and visual depth to the landscape. I splash down the trail, step over the trestle, dip down the path into the open meadow that's bordered by the river. All the bright red buds on the tall hardwoods are waterlogged, and the slick, soaked willow branches shine a deep red against the gray river. This is the morning of my Wednesday morning writer's group, and I have finished my prep. I have one glorious hour of wandering wetter and wetter. There's a dirt road in the meadow that leads to Hospital Road, and this is where I pass this tree branch, red bark splitting like torn skin from the branch. It stops my breath.
The poem I bring to group, to read and write from, is Ada Limón's, "How to Triumph Like a Girl" ~ after reading it aloud to each other, we have our five minutes of silence (movement or stillness, everyone's choice) to the sound of the audio clip below, and then a free write.
Perhaps it was, unconsciously, this poem about the heart that made me see the tree branch so clearly, so appreciatively. The writing generated by this poem and process was very moving. Women writing from drumming and horse hearts and winning. Wow.