Allowing the Woods to Tell Me What to Do

One Saturday morning at Leaside Park
I entered the wooded area to walk and take pictures…
There I encountered the sagacity of nature.
I slowly weaved my way, walked, stopped, paused, looked, smelled, touched, and listened.
Joyful colours bursting everywhere…rawness…organic…
I felt the energy of the trees and the plants
And those crawling tiny creatures.
Slight breeze…slight rustling of leaves…
Streaks of sunlight, here and there…
Strange, but I did not see nor hear birds.
There was silence…a sense of serenity and the joyful anticipation of finding something interesting to photograph…and then I saw this beautifully architectured cobweb
Lighted by a streak of sunlight…my camera got busy…
With sharp intent, focused attention and heightened feelings
I scoured the area, sensing…waiting for that inner nudge…
And so I did as my heart directed me…as I allowed the woods to tell me what to do…
I just let go and simply gave in to whatever it presented me…I felt like a begging bowl…
Just going through the motion with an open heart, full attention, submissiveness and humility…
I am right there…at that moment…no more separation…nor boundaries…
Nor classifications…I became a part of the woods…
So were the streaks of sunlight…and the plants…and the small creatures…
There is an aura of inter-beingness…a sense of belongingness…of being aligned with the natural order of things…
Of partaking of an ancient truth that has been there since the beginning of time…
I let everything unfold as I walk…just sensing…no rigidity…everything flows smoothly…
When I take photos, I bend, I squat, I contort my body to get the best angle…the right perspective…
The right depth of field… my breathing is temporarily suspended…
It’s all in the motion…while it is happening…no past…no future…just in the here and now…
Walking and photography gifted me with sweet peace and immense joy, enhancing my being human…I got caught up in a wonderful way and I emerged fully enlivened…

I went to the coffee shop afterwards…and then I read this quote that made me smile:

“When you walk, just walk.” ~ Yun-man

Ahh…wise words…so simple…so profound.

I deeply inhaled the sweet and earthy aroma of my steaming cup of coffee and tasted it with gusto. I felt that all the cells in my nose and mouth were dancing with delight. It was so good.

I tasted the beauty of life in spite of its imperfections.

*Photography by Virgilio Gavia

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About Virgilio Gavia

Interests: poetry, photography, writing (prose and poetry), walking/hiking, reading (non-fiction and books of poetry) drinking coffee and herbal teas, camping, fishing, contemplating, solitude, silence, traveling, faded jeans, meaningful conversation, wabi-sabi, haiku, tanka, Jazz, Classical, oldies, all the books of Thomas Merton, Joseph Campbell, Thomas Moore, John O'Donohue, Mary Oliver, David Whyte, Mark Strand, ancient Chinese and Japanese poets, The Bible, spirituality, philosophy, psychology, sociology, history, humanities and the arts.
This entry was posted in autumn, Photo, Prose, Ruminations. Bookmark the permalink.

13 Responses to Allowing the Woods to Tell Me What to Do

  1. drawandshoot says:

    Virgiloi, “that inner nudge”, I like this description.

  2. bebs1 says:

    That sensuous feeling of being one with nature – truly absorbed. You are truly an artist.

    • thanks, Lou. walking and communing with nature, aside from poetry and photography, are the activities i love doing. i do a lot of camping and hiking. still so many things to explore.

  3. arlene1027 says:

    I love, love, love this!

  4. Subhan Zein says:

    This poem is great, thank you for sharing, Virgilio. Keep penning, and keep inspiring. 🙂

    Subhan Zein

  5. Robyn Lee says:

    Lovely imagery here … your style of writing is delightful and soothing ~ much enjoyed 🙂 RL

  6. artzent says:

    What an awesome photograph! Did you shoot it?

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