Sunday Walks - Taking the time to "see"

Sometimes i walk. Particularly on Sundays. I go to church. Come home. Fix lunch and handwrite some letters. Read. Usually fall asleep; guilt free; the risk of reading in a hammock on a shady porch. Then walk. Not for exercise but for edification and worship. I make myself not be in a hurry. Any little thing -- moss on a tree stump, a bird feather, a decaying leaf, a sound -- is justification to stop and stand still, or to bend low and look closely. ... We have lots of trails in the woods on the land where I live. I've learned that if I will walk just five or ten feet off the path, I'll see things that I'd never seen standing on it. I saw these on a recent walk, (only one shown due to technical limitations-me!) both a few feet off the trail, one in a pine stand, the other in a hardwood bottom. Both exemplars of symmetry and texture and color. I'm sure they have names, species, provenance. But I don't know what any of those might be. For now, they were just spigs of delicate beauty, a golden spore and earth blood, that were reason to walk, and then to stop walking, and then to walk some more.

Allen Levi