Grounded.  And still so far away from where I want to be.

Forever longing.  Is this the state of human nature?

Touching down on solid ground.  Become a part of the elements.  Return to soil.

Autumn. Falling into place.  As if I intended it this way.

Dealing with the empty nest by filling it with six laying hens and a rooster just learning to crow.

The scratch and clang of yet another pack rat captured in the have-a-heart trap set under the front deck.  The season of rodents is winding down.   They all want to come in. How plentiful this year has been.  Attracting the added bonus of hawks that have come to heed the call of this bountiful crop, fed full by the warmest, driest longest summer we remember.  Or are our memories always painted more lush than reality was?

And now the coyote, mother and two pups, crossing out on pasture, undisturbed by the running horses.  Mother drops below the horizon, while children linger, distracted by a tall patch of dried grass and the stirring within.  They stop, arch, spring load, and pounce.  Then scamper off to catch up with mother.

Mother, mentor, magician or priest.  Someone show me the way when I am a little lost.

I write a friend and look for answers and only find more questions:  I tell her there is some darkness that comes over me every fall. Perhaps the change of light. Not a real sadness for the loss of summer, for with that means the arrival of winter and the departure of many things I could do without, and that’s all good stuff. I don’t understand what it could be.

Except… human nature… reflective… wanting more…

Falling.  Down.  Chilling, clearing, washing away…

I do my best to fill the emptiness inside, lighten the inevitable darkening.  I keep busy.  There are always things to do.  Laundry, bake, feed the horses, walk the dog, split wood, paper work.  I want more.

Falling leaves.  How quickly the trees let loose of their brilliant display, the grande finale, the dramatic completion.

To be replaced by what?  Barren trees.  Still hillside and silent winds.  Dormancy and hibernation.  The season of turning within.

I find myself sitting here doing nothing.  There is nothing I have to do.  I have never thought that was a healthy state.  I prefer to keep busy, have a full plate, have things that have to be done, deadlines, a little bit of pressure, point and purpose, you know?

How lucky I am to be able to have nothing, you might say.  But those are foolish words.  For who is lucky who is not employed, not doing enough, not with direction and meaning to each day.  I have never wanted ennui, abhor sloth, and fight them and the ensuing poverty that they carry with them as an added burden.

Get out and enjoy it, you say.  The rain holds me back. I’ll find other excuses.  One can’t keep going out “enjoying.”  At some point, responsibilities and realities ruin the fun.  I want to be productive, do something positive.  Yes, even make the world a better place.  Why not?

“I do not have a mansion,

I haven’t any land,

Not one paper dollar

To crinkle in my hand

But I can show you morning

From a thousand hills

And kiss you

And give you seven daffodils…”

(from an old folk song I once heard beautifully sung around a campfire I never was brave enough to sit near enough to warm my soul)

How simple can we be

Forever needing point and purpose

In this ever changing world

When some days change does not  come when and where we look for it

The gears are stuck

We are left waiting

The jolt, release, exhilaration of letting go

Now what?  We’ve fulfilled our calling in life of providing vacations, searching for something deeper, more meaningful.

Where is the yellow brick road hiding, or how far am I from finding the way?