Memoir/Personal Essay

Finding Nature

As part of my Nature Writing course I had to choose a location to sit and journal for the duration of the semester. This journal project made me aware of the isolation I have fallen into within the confines of my home. I complain often of not having a place to embrace nature fully and yet I haven’t even tried. When searching for a location for this project I thought about the local cemetery with its dark, gray stones; its deadly secrets; and its ghosts all vying for my attention with their own stories to tell, but I wasn’t sure I could make it there consistently. I thought about the park, usually my favorite place to escape, but then read in the newspaper that a woman’s body had just been found in the lake among the newly sprouted greenery, winter sludge, and hungry geese. I thought about my front porch and my back patio, neither seeming quite appropriate. And so I stalled, with no place to go.

It was the looming deadline that forced my decision and for convenience I chose my front porch. I cleared away debris – five-year-old dried leaves along with the petrified spider webs – and bought two Adirondack chairs, a wooden, rocking chair wind chime, and created my own haven on my tiny front porch.

                                                      *   *   *

Today my bare feet root to the cool concrete floor of my front porch as I watch two robins in a lover’s spiral dance. The wind plays music with the chimes as I silently cheer on the budding grass and tiny, white flowers emerging from the barren ground. The sun is solid today displaying angles of dark and light as if rearranging the earth in an act of spring cleaning. I want to sit here forever and listen to the notes of the wind, watch the animation of the invisible – tangible proof of things unseen.

A fly lands on my page warning me that there are more to come, that the warmth my body so desperately craves will bring them in droves and I will be unable to sit here listening to the wind’s symphony without the interruption of their vibrating wings.


5 thoughts on “Finding Nature”

  1. This piece made me want to sit in the other Adirondack chair with you and just be. Your description of nature was wonderous. What a great writing exercise! I did something similiar in a writing class in San Francisco. I went to a park and sat between two slides and described the sounds of children sliding and playing at the park. It is a good exercise for writers of any level. You nailed this one!!

  2. sometimes I think we look too hard outside our immediate environment. In your case you literally found what you were looking for right on your doorstep. This is a beautifully evocative piece.

  3. This was a lovely, introspective post. Loved your use of imagery and description of spring-like activity. Glad you found your spot for journaling; the subject of journaling truly caught my eye since it’s one of my favorite things to do!

    Have a refreshing day,
    Dawn Herring
    JournalWriter Freelance
    Host/Moderator of #JournalChat on Twitter

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s