August 24, 2014

Sunday - Saying Yes to the World

Not just animals and plants, then, but tumbling waterfalls and dry riverbeds, gusts of wind, compost piles and cumulus clouds, freshly painted houses (as well as houses abandoned and sometimes haunted), rusting automobiles, feathers, granite cliffs and grains of sand, tax forms, dormant volcanoes, bays and bayous made wretched by pollutants, snowdrifts, shed antlers, diamonds, and daikon radishes, all are expressive, sometimes eloquent and hence participant in the mystery of language. Our own chatter erupts in response to the abundant articulations of the world: human speech is simply our part of a much broader conversation.

It follows that the myriad things are also listening, or attending, to various signs and gestures around them. Indeed, when we are at ease in our animal flesh, we will sometimes feel we are being listened to, or sensed, by the earthly surroundings. And so we take deeper care with our speaking, mindful that our sounds may carry more than a merely human meaning and resonance. This care -- this full-bodied alertness -- is the ancient, ancestral source of all word magic. It is the practice of attention to the uncanny power that lives in our spoken phrases to touch and sometimes transform the tenor of the world's unfolding.
David Abram, Becoming Animal: An Earthly Cosmology

2 comments:

B. Rogers, Living in Black Mountain said...

Yes.

Kameshwari said...

Even though I live in New Mexico, it is through your previous posts that I came to read David Abram.

Todays composite looked to me like a human holding the seed for all that is potential in the physical world. I could feel the explosiveness in the Big Bang, held at the merging tip of two fingers.

While I am on vacation, I'm wondering if my freshly planted lettuces are saying to themselves, "hurry and grow. The tomatoes are so big and the light seems to be receeding. And those fingertips long for the taste of autumn from our greening souls."