Today begins the Year of the Rat, an industrious little fellow.  I meditated this morning feeling energy flow. I’ve cleaned out enough that I’ve saved what nourishes me, and let other pieces go.  Today is a pause to recollect, recollect the past.

For fifth and most of sixth grade, we lived seven miles outside Bettendorf, Iowa in a beautiful home that overlooked the Mississippi River.  There was an island in that part of the river so the water would freeze and we could ice skate over and be with trees. In summer, we swam off a dock and traveled in a boat my father built. We could water ski from the dock.  Next to our house was what I felt as a forest at the time. If I were to return, I’m sure it wouldn’t be the same but in those years of change, I could go there and be alone with birds, leaves, squirrels and trees.

Much of my life revolves around water and trees.  There, I feed, and now this morning the birds are beginning to wake.  And there’s that word wake. We each leave a wake as we move in our various ways.

Trees and animals, humans and insects, flowers and birds:

These are active images of the subtle energies that flow

from the stars throughout the universe. Meeting

and combining with each other and the elements of

the earth, they give rise to all living things.

– Hua Hu Ching

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