To swim at a spot where there’s a deep divot drop-off and lots of backwash from pounding shore break, this is what you do.
Stand at the seem, the furthest place the water flows up on the sand. Get your ankles wet. If you’re not timid go up to your calves. Now imagine you’re about to jump into a double dutch session–to get the rhythm of the ropes what happens is your hips cradle, you start to rock back and forth to get a feel for the swing. This is what happens at the water’s edge.
Or what oughta.
The primal beat alive at the ocean naturally moves in you. If you put panic aside. The amount of time for me that I’ve been away dictates the time I need to find the beat. For me it’s never more than one week but can still take forever which is up to five minutes because as much as it’s about the ocean–it’s also about the false rhythms of life disconnected from Nature–they are alive in our bodies. They make themselves KNOWN right there at the edge, and need too to be shaken off to find what’s elemental, what’s real. Then you can know the sets with your body.
On days with surf when there’s little let-up I like to wait for a set wave. That’s the one that comes after a barely there pause, and it peaks a certain way which I swear has a glean. The second you see it swelling wade in to the white water and when your hips are in it’ll be bigger so start to swim towards the wave. It’ll look like it’s gonna break on your head. Timed right you go under as it’s peaking and the momentum pulls you out fast then easy, surfacing just on the other side of the break. Then you’re past the crash zone. You can just hang laid back and bobbing style. And feel the swells pass through you.
Surfing? A whole other beast because to do what I just explained is a lot more hectic if maneuvering a board. Mine’s seven foot fun which for me won’t dive. Also the pay-off is different. A swim gives me that deep body chill and I’m lazy (my board’s been dinged since Memorial Day and I haven’t once thought to get it fixed.) It just depends on what you’re looking for–to swim is a no hassle reward. Surfing is lots of labor but equivalent or even way BETTER result–LOTS of stoke! It all comes down to the energy you’re working with/need.
Which for me is about being in the One. Doing what I can to keep unprogramming the false rounds, doing what I can to de-program autopilot. Which has been on my mind. The way it always is at season-passing: the deep life: The thing that moves us. The thing that’s of you, that we can only somewhat see. There’s Soul in there, lest we forget. It is. We are of it. We are It. Great Mysterious One Soul. World-Rhthym. Creating and destroying of it’s Self over and over again.
Season-passing, like a hip-rock taking stock of the wild rhythm of which you are actually a part.
This post appeared originally on The Impulse Itself, Saturday September 13, 2008. 6 yrs ago, today.
Similar cycle: last of Summer, of growth or bounty energy, but on the apex of Moon Wax, day before Full. Rather than now, day before last-quarter wane.
yes yes yes, a weekend all to me, starting despairingly bc i dear reader am always no-thing if not dramatically self-involved in the happenings or so perceived non-happenings of my very own life…and do tend to let such perceptions overcome the best of me…
so said, what a glory day i’ve had since yesterday passed and i subsequently got my head out of my ass. handscrubbed my versa this afternoon after a trip to the library–where my card was so outdated i had to open a new account in order to check out Girls Like Us Carole King, Joni Mitchell, Carly Simon–and the Journey of a Generation which called to me literally off of the shelf as i passed it by. i hoped, as i heaped said work and a slathering poetry books on the counter, that it would deliver me in a similar mythically-steeped retrieval of trailblazer femin-ista historia as diPrima’s bio My Life as a Woman The New York Years did. and so far i am adequately quenched.
made some jewelry today, too. and wrote a poem. tonite, it’s my plan, after the moon goes up and the light is all over the land the way only darktime light can be, i am going to write. like, maybe even all nite long….
I’ve decided to waste my life again,
Like I used to: get drunk on
The light in the leaves, find a wall
Against which something can happen,
Whatever may have happened
Long ago—let a bullet hole echoing
The will of an executioner, a crevice
In which a love note was hidden,
Be a cell where a struggling tendril
Utters a few spare syllables at dawn.
I’ve decided to waste my life
In a new way, to forget whoever
Touched a hair on my head, because
It doesn’t matter what came to pass,
Only that it passed, because we repeat
Ourselves, we repeat ourselves.
I’ve decided to walk a long way
Out of the way, to allow something
Dreaded to waken for no good reason,
Let it go without saying,
Let it go as it will to the place
It will go without saying: a wall
Against which a body was pressed
For no good reason, other than this.
The thing about waves they teach wild wisdom better than any other teacher who stripped me filled me made me brave.
For days this week I’ve been thinking on that last September. Fall 2008, I lived on a place called Anngar Farm. Waves teach you: the ways of the season on a farm, how to host a garden, how to track the sun rise and set across the space of sky from winter to fall, how to know in your body how it moves bit by bit across the year across the sky, by watching for it at the tops of the trees. How to know in your body that eventually, movement, no matter how long it takes, always moves you back across the same ol space.
That last season, on the farm. The Fall that year ushered in the larger cycle of who I am, how I am, where I am now. It’s alive in me, greater wave set incoming, I SEE YOU from the space within where for years I’ve tracked your tide. My car is broken down. The dear upstairs neighbor I adore is replacing the battery for me. He works late nights on the weekend (means he sleeps late in the day) so it won’t happen til early next week. For which I feel SO relieved. Means I don’t have to go anywhere, do no thing. Ride my bike to the beach…
And deal in words, who are Alive in me the traipsing, living way. Words, like waves. Waves of Poet Mad-Eyed Vision-Making. Seasons-passing. Cycle-making. Cycles inside cycles. Cycles ready…as they always are, are we paying attention…?