Yesterday I sat in the hollowed-out, burned-up, stump-room of a redwood. Its inside was a charred crocodile skin, something born long before me.
Nestled inside its frame, I tried to count the colors in the forest, all the browns and the greens. They buried me before I began.
The shapes – so many – rendered me useless. The spikes and the curves, the edges and the slants: they leaned in close, whispered their beguiling threats. They were not the friendly circles of kindergarten, the isosceles triangles of high-school geometry.
I waited. Nothing moved. The breathing was nearly my own.
I saw the dark places, the hidden spots, the shelter for those seeking such things. And I looked up, up, up.
I looked up and saw the unexpected: the beginnings of something new, rising like a promise from that which had burned. It did not ask to exist, just came into form: unbidden and unshakeable and absolutely, achingly, stunning.