In my recent workshop, we used a variety of artistic mediums to explore creative “assignments” — writing, drawing, photography, etc. This was born of the notion that trying something different can reveal a new layer of our creativity, a new aspect of our being.
For a couple of the assignments, I found myself writing in third person. This is unusual for a writer of personal essays, which are very much first person: Me, I, My.
Telling someone else’s tale was exciting. I did not know where it was going or how it would end. While I won’t deny that I saw myself in the stories, they were not about me. Liberated from being factual, my imagination took the helm.
Our first prompt was about “roots” and this short parable arrived. It came, not from my intellect but from that magical place of knowing that exists in all of us and speaks when we are open and willing.
I share it with you because I like the message it delivered, quite unexpectedly. I share it so that it may spark you to listen to that place of knowing within yourself, even for a moment, and see what comes.
She drew up the fabric of her skirt to take in the view her bare feet. There they were, planted in the squish of damp soil. Blades of grass peeked between her toes, tickling her, but she was not bothered.
She’d been wandering for a long time, afraid to land anywhere long enough to get stuck in the droll or, worse, committed for eternity to something that should have been a passing fancy.
Lately her need to wander had been shadowed by a need to belong. Like an itch just out of reach of scratching, it tormented her. Perhaps that is why she had kicked off her shoes frantically in this moment, desperate to have her feet on the ground.
She closed her eyes and took in the quality of the air on her skin. It was calming, like a whisper. She imagined what it might be like to grow roots from the soles of her feet and secure her stance here. That way the wind of her whims (or fears) could not sweep her away, yet again.
The earth, as if in answer, reached up and lovingly grasped her ankles, the wind enveloped her in its embrace, the sun delivered warmth like a message: You belong exactly where you are. Every. Where. You. Go.