II. Allemande

This morning I went on a walk to think things through a little more
than I had before.

And I remembered my mother’s words when she told me about her pain
and I took my soul — no, that is the wrong word. I am talking about the Perceiver in myself, like a tiny bird from the tropics caged in my body, this monkey. I took it into my hands and let it float somewhere a little above my body, this monkey, looking on. I saw my hands flex, tighten, relax, a nervous tic that makes me look like a flannel-wearing gunslinger constantly clawing at his weapon.

I turn the corner and ahead of me is an orange/white cat. I follow its curves as it walks. I am disappointed in myself, this monkey, my graceless stance and thrust of motion. My intent is blurred and my movement is clumsy. My eyes are rough-hewn and grossly imperfect for this, my time on earth. The cat turns back and looks into my eyes. I am captivated. It is as if every thought in its head finds ultimate expression in these, the movements it makes. It only glanced back for a moment but its infinite grace slows the Perceiver’s clock. I am walking faster than it, and soon I catch up. It is now looking at me — and turning to intercept me!

I feel a rush of love to the head. I squat on the sidewalk and reach out to stroke her. She anticipates my movement, moving her head ever so slightly and closing her eyes. She is receiving me, inviting the contact. Something deep and strong inside me is humming. The conflict in me is colored more sharply, until it passes. I stand up and start walking away. She follows me tentatively. I break into a run and soon she is gone behind me. This monkey has bigger fish to fry.

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