The hermit side of me is being dragged here kicking and screaming. She wants to sit cross-legged at the entry to a cave, Paleolithic paintings at her back and wildflowers spread across the distance in front.
It would be a warm day and the sun would be gentle where it touched my hermit feet and legs. My head would be just into the shade. The hermit wants never to work, to lay the burdens down like offerings up to that sun, to have them vaporize. She wants to ease into forgiveness and forgetfulness and into the yellow of the little flowers right over there.
But the tough steeled thing of me has dragged her here. Welcome, dear reader, let me talk to your heart and, thus, clear my own. The wheel has long been invented but knowledge is a delicate thing woven of math, time, space, senses, conjectures, bone fragments, DNA. Sixty-five billion neutrinos stream from the sun and go through every cubic centimeter of your body every second.
When I first took yoga in the YWCA nearly 50 years ago, my consciousness would rise out of my prone body during meditation and float above it and above the bodies next to me. When I asked the instructor privately if there was anything I should do with this, he went wide-eyed and said, “Don’t tell anyone. They’ll get scared.” It never happened again, and I never told anyone. Until now, but this is the least of it. And I will speak of the more of it and post it here under “Slouching Toward Enlightenment.”
So I drag my hermit self here because she and I live in this world, and I’ve grown to love it here. It took a long time. At seventy, I want to smash my face into the pomegranates of life, I want juice sluicing into me, I want young lovers and wild gardens of beautiful things. And I will write of these things and post them on “Woman of a Certain Age.”
The tough steeled thing of me is being re-shaped, tendered back down inside like a prong to nudge up the poet and meanderer and say “dare with me.” The hermit shivers, “What are you doing now? Again? More? Really? Necessary?”
The past 12 years were years of being an activist for women power, witnessing the savaging in the Middle East, getting emails in the night from desperate sisters in Afghanistan and Palestine, and having unending astonishment at people’s courage as they were being violated. The steeled me, well-tempered by now, will continue to write of rights and needs and wonders, and will interview women around the world and post their words here under “Peace By Peace.”
And when I was violated – a country we will visit, but less than we will savor travels to Paris, my geographical heart home, in October and the Galapagos with its blue-footed boobies in January. To be posted with photographs under “Road Show.”
At seventy I often feel grief and ecstasy at the same time. It resembles fine wines. Reds.
Come travel with me. My hermit self is. We will travel light.