To be alive is Power
Existence in itself
Without a further function
Outside, the ground is damp, but the predicted storm has not yet arrived. El Nino? At this moment, our household is still holding a California drought frame of mind.
I sit in view of an open door in what was my mother’s favorite chair; it doesn’t quite fit the decor, but I have been reluctant to let it go. A voice at the back of the house fills the soundscape. I become aware of a shoulder tightening and, slowly, lean back.
I rock gently, look outside and notice a steel grey wet veil suspended in the air, close to a mist. There is momentary silence; then, a woodpecker and dove express themselves, vociferously. I am pulled to go outside.
Wearing prescription sun glasses, which cast a warm amber over the landscape, I step on yellow-brown ash leaves that had fallen in wind pools under foot and head uphill. I drag broken branches out from under oak down one of the deer trails, reminding myself to protect the body and allow earth to carry the weight of wood.
Rescuing a jacket thrown over one of the old horse corral posts, I return to the house. Inside, our weather station tells me it is over 60 per cent humidity, and by the next day we get more than an inch of rain in less than two hours.
Two days later, what is being called a “Gustado” hits. Our power line splits. Water electrifies. Pipes melt. Smoke spills from the attic. Modern systems no longer work. And we are, powerfully, alive!