In the far corner of the back lawn a sagging cedar arch begins the short trail to our marsh. Everything changes when I step through the archway. The sky disappears behind a confusion of overhead branches. Shadows linger on trunks and stumps, while slices of sunlight punctuate a path of fir needles and moss.
Sometimes my husband clears the path of winter’s branches, dead twigs and the squirrels’ collection of tiny cones, but otherwise the land here is left untouched. I love this walk. It’s less than three hundred yards long, but it meanders, and without losing my way, I can get lost in peace-filled moments miles from the waiting world.
This is called a pond on the site map – it use to be a beaverpond – but at summer’s end wild grasses have all but obliterated any view of the water. I sit on a rustic bench, my back pressed against the rough bark of a massive cedar, and I listen to hidden mallards, and hopping sparrows. If I am quiet I may see a heron, but usually the dog’s enthusiasm causes it to go flapping across to sit high in a tree at the far end, out of range of my binoculars.
Some days this is the perfect place to contemplate snarls in my manuscripts, scene dead ends and similar frustrations. Other days it provides quietude.
On rare occasions I am eerily reminded of the bears I’ve seen moseying around the edges of the marsh, and I decide it’s time to make a beeline back up the trail into the relative safety of my back yard.
With the return to fall routines I’m mulling over the direction I should take with the current manuscript. I seem to have lost my way. How are you doing with yours? Are you beginning anything new, or close to finishing something?