the llama blog
practicing yoga off the mat.
I’m walking up my long driveway. The soybeans to my right sway without any wind. The corn crunches and whispers as my feet pass by. No, I’m not dreaming or reliving a horror flick. Living in the middle of a cornfield, I’m getting to know my new neighbors. They bounce and fly across my path. Some even wait atop my mailbox. It’s as if overnight, these neighbors moved in.
The neighbors, of course, are my friendly grasshoppers. And given their short lifespan of a year, they probably hatched from their eggs in the spring, hopped around as nymphs and morphed more than five times before I noticed them as full-grown adult grasshoppers with wings.
Their life is similar to ours. We’re born. We morph (grow). We become adults, reproduce (maybe) and die. But the grasshopper accepts its responsibility and savors every day in the sun. It knows nothing is forever. We, on the other hand, are fierce complex creatures. We get caught up in our mind, our duties, ourselves that we forget to look up when we walk, to notice the grasshopper symphony playing around us.
I heard the following poem, “The Summer Day” by Mary Oliver.
Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean--
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down--
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she naps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else would I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?
Do you know how to be idle and blessed and stroll through the fields of life? What is you plan to do with the one wonderful life this fall?