The trail is wet
from yesterday's rain.
The earth soft
under my Sneaks.
I place one foot after another
and will myself on.
I will repeat this,
I will honor this substance,
I will write of this,
I will apply this to all things,
~~Judi Van Gorder
I'm posting my blog a day early in case you didn't know, Wednesday April 3 is International Walking Day. I did take a walk this morning. And after being prodded by my doctor, I'm committing to make more of an effort in doing so on a regular basis. I can get so caught up in everyday stuff which includes writing. Sitting at my computer, with a cup of coffee, and wearing comfy slippers on my feet, I ignore the fact that my body needs to go outside and move.
I used to walk daily, but with the cold wet winter, arthritis in both knees and just being lazy, walking has gotten spotty. My resistance is kind of crazy because I live in a forest where there are many gorgeous trails lined with fern and giant redwoods and the beach is a 10 minute drive away, my office is located in a small town and only two blocks from my office is a walking trail in apple country, I have plenty of places to walk. The natural beauty alone should lure me. Right now the apple blossoms are luscious.
I know walking is good for my heart, my lungs, my weight, my endurance, and my sunshine personality . I just feel better after I've done it. But putting on those walking shoes and stepping out the door can seem like such a chore and pretty soon I don't even think about it. Well today I walked, I feel energized, committed, my doctor will like my report and I wrote a poem and a blog about it. Win-Win five times over.
Mary Oliver was known to write many poems from her walks. Dylan Thomas wrote one of his finest after a walk. William Wordsworth is said to have walked an estimated 180,000 miles during his lifetime, many of his poems born on those walks. Our own Badger, right here at PMO, said he loves walking more than writing. That comment came as a surprise because his love of writing is clearly evident in every poem he writes.
Walking To Oak-Head Pond, And Thinking
Poem In October
It was my thirtieth year to heaven
Woke to my hearing from harbour and neighbour wood
And the mussel pooled and the heron
The morning beckon
With water praying and call of seagull and rook
And the knock of sailing boats on the net webbed wall
Myself to set foot
In the still sleeping town and set forth.
My birthday began with the water-
Birds and the birds of the winged trees flying my name
Above the farms and the white horses
And I rose
In rainy autumn
And walked abroad in a shower of all my days.
High tide and the heron dived when I took the road
Over the border
And the gates
Of the town closed as the town awoke.
A springful of larks in a rolling
Cloud and the roadside bushes brimming with whistling
Blackbirds and the sun of October
On the hill's shoulder,
Here were fond climates and sweet singers suddenly
Come in the morning where I wandered and listened
To the rain wringing
Wind blow cold
In the wood faraway under me.
Pale rain over the dwindling harbor
And over the sea wet church the size of a snail
With its horns through mist and the castle
Brown as owls
But all the gardens
Of spring and summer were blooming in the tall tales
Beyond the border and under the lark full cloud.
There could I marvel
Away but the weather turned around.
It turned away from the blithe country
And down the other air and the blue altered sky
Streamed again a wonder of summer
Pears and red currants
And I saw in the turning so clearly a child's
Forgotten mornings when he walked with his mother
Through the parables
Of sun light
And the legends of the green chapels
And the twice told fields of infancy
That his tears burned my cheeks and his heart moved in mine.
These were the woods the river and sea
Where a boy
In the listening
Summertime of the dead whispered the truth of his joy
To the trees and the stones and the fish in the tide.
And the mystery
Still in the water and singing-birds.
And there could I marvel my birthday
Away but the weather turned around. And the true
Joy of the long dead child sang burning
In the sun.
It was my thirtieth
Year to heaven stood there then in the summer noon
Though the town below lay leaved with October blood.
O may my heart's truth
Still be sung
On this high hill in a year's turning.
Sweet Was the Walk
So if it is cold out, throw on a jacket, or warm in your part of the earth, wear some shorts. But don't forget those walking shoes, step outside and join the world in taking a walk. And when you're done, maybe there will be a poem in you that you'd like to share, share it here.