The River

Log by a Fiery River

CABALLO LAKE SP, NM—The afternoon turned to dusk and I stepped down to the river behind my camp just as a sandpiper shouted a warning to his flock.

I stood easy on the shore, released the ‘Me’ contraction, surrendered and opened and faded. My boundaries dissolved and Her and “I” were One once again.

Across the water, the tall rock formations glowed with a brilliant, fiery orange and three crows flew above the ridge line, cawing to each other.

In the river, a fish jumped, catching its last meal for the evening, while overhead, a group of geese flew across the clear sky in an undulating V-formation.

On the water’s surface, the patterns of light and waves took on a life of their own—shifting, flowing, and dancing to the rhythms of wind and river and Light.

Downstream, a coyote crept out of the foliage and sniffed the air. Content that it was safe, he trod quickly down to the riverbank and lapped at the water. The wish for a camera arose, then just as suddenly fell away into the nothingness from whence it came.

Drinking his fill, the coyote turned and leapt off into the brush.

All was still.

Around the bend, an old man approached. He wore a straw hat, round wire-framed glasses and a deep tan. He hobbled as he walked and used a tall gnarled stick for assistance. As he approached, he eyed me curiously.

I contracted out of Her and back into self and felt the clunky and limited ‘me’ solidify. As always—with the contraction—I felt The Great Loss while simultaneously a tinge of sorrow for those who’ve yet to know Her this way.

I exchanged a few pleasantries with the man, turned, and climbed the riverbank back to camp as the sky darkened and the sun set behind the mountains.

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