Friday, December 28, 2018

Friday Ramble - Last of the Year

It seems right to start the last ramble of the year with sunlight shining through fog over the Clyde river on a December morning. The river is a meandering tributary, and she curves sinuously through woodlands, valleys and farm fields in the eastern Ontario highlands, carving deep channels and loving every turn along her way. A wild spirit of the first order and a veritable crone among waterways, she resists freezing as long as she can, crooning, muttering and grumbling on her jaunt south to merge with the Mississippi river in Bathurst township. In some places the river is scarcely wider than a creek, but she has attitude right from her birthplace in Clyde Lake to her journey's end.

In winter, I find a sheltered perch on the bank and listen to the river as she sings underneath the ice. Sometimes, she seems to be performing a duet with the wind, and there's a kind of Zen counterpoint at work, two unbridled entities utterly independent in their contours and rhythm, but meticulously interwoven and seamless in their harmonies. Putting all notions of complex orchestration and conventional choreography aside, there's lovely music in the air on icy winter days. The sound of moving water has always been a leitmotif for me, and I often think that my existence can be measured in rivers, currents and intermittent streams rather than cocktails, jewelry, pairs of shoes and coffee spoons.

This is the right place to be on the trailing edge of the calendar year. In springtime, I watched as willows on the far shore leafed out and turned silvery green, then looked on a few weeks later as the river overflowed her banks and asserted her claim to the fertile fields on both sides. In summer, I counted bales of hay and captured images of deer and wild turkeys feeding at dusk. In autumn, the sun went down over the same willows, so golden of leaf and limb that they seemed to be spun out of sunlight or stars. In the now, snow frosts every tree and branch, and the light shining through them dazzles my eyes.

This is where I came to collect my thoughts when my husband (now in remission) was diagnosed with cancer, then after my own cancer diagnosis some time later. It is where I came when my friend Penny passed beyond the fields we know last year, and when we put Spencer to sleep after osteosarcoma rampaged through his dear little metabolism like wildfire and left him in agony. It was the most loving thing we could do for our sweet boy, but I still cry when I think about it.

This is where I come to replenish the energies and inner directives needed to get through big life stuff like chemo, radiation, debilitating drugs and the chronic pain and numbness that result from them. There are times when I hardly recognize the frazzled female drooping along the shoreline, but the river always knows me, and she welcomes me with open arms. When I think I am unraveling, the Clyde works her magic, and she knits me back together again. With Himself, Spencer's little brother Beau, a loving circle of sisters and  kindred spirits and the river on my side, I will get through somehow

Thank you for coming along on Friday rambles this year. May we share many more rambles in the shiny new year that is waiting for us around the bend.


Barbara Rogers said...

Many blessings for you and yours for the new year. And a few thousand bits of gratitude for all you have shared here.

Shell said...

I always enjoy your rambles. May 2019 be a beautiful and blissful year for you, Cate.

Lori said...

So appreciative of all your creative contributions here. Thank you, and blessings to you and your family and friends in 2019. Lori

Blue Sky Dreaming said...

Blessings to you and your loved ones and peace in 2019. I'm here most mornings with a heart full of gratitude...thank you for sharing your corner of earth.

Beth Owl's Daughter said...

May the river sing only the sweetest songs to you in 2019. Wishing you healing, ease, and beauty at every turn. Thank you for all your many, many gifts to us.

Anonymous said...

Thank you for sharing your poetic insights this past year. May you have health, joy, adventure, peace and many blessings in 2019.

Kameshwari said...

Friday Rambles have always been a favorite of mine. The are always inspiring. The photography and meanderings create a meditative atmosphere for my day. Blessings to you in 2019.

One Woman's Journey - a journal being written from Woodhaven - her cottage in the woods. said...

all has been said
may blessings continue to surround you
so much
this one has learned from your words