Walk as if you are kissing the earth with your feet

Walk as if you are kissing the earth with your feet  -Thich Nhat Hanh,

A few days ago my poet friend, Wendy Morton, sent a picture and poem, “…for hope, for peace in an anxious time.” (It was for Teryl, who is recovering from brain surgery, and for our family, but also, it was too lovely not to share. Thank you Wendy.)

Today, reading Thich Nhat Hanh, I was again reminded of Wendy’s poem—Wood Walk—this kissing-walk-poem.

How I wish I could walk this way, always. For this is how one walks into a poem, to retrieve a poem, your feet kissing the earth, the slow swing of your arms, in harmony, your legs in rhythm with the earth. A form of breathing.

And this, it seems to me, is how one walks to call heaven to earth, to bring peace, to remake, recreate, a small corner of the earth, to bring hope, to give one small part of earth back its original intent, so as to hear the echo of our own original, creative, yet evolving purpose.

The promising part is that for those of us who haven’t yet learned the skill (or have forgotten), there are those around us who have—surrogates, models, mentors, which is how we all learn to walk.




Because we saw dapplegrass and
startleblossom, moss spring.
Because we watched fern coils,
tree lean and fir clocks.
Because we listened for streamrun, pondhush.

Because later we caught
sparkle heart stones
and limpet cups.
Because we read the shells’ alphabet
and touched the ravenstone.
Because we looked for this poem.
Found it.

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