path dancer

I find myself on a narrow path with nothing on either side to buffer or support me. As far as I can see ahead the path continues in this way, leading nowhere. There is wind, a thin strip of rock under foot and a long way to fall. Overhead the sky is thin, birds are circling.

I don’t know how to place my feet. I can’t see where this is getting me.

I raise my arm and a big black bird lands on it.  I put my question to the bird. “I don’t know about this path. I don’t know if I’m headed in the right direction. The right path is supposed to feel right, isn’t it? And this just feels precarious. What do I do?”

The bird sidesteps up my arm to my shoulder, ducks his beak to my ear and hisses: Stop talking.

“But —“


“But I—“


So I stop. I stop talking. I stop walking. I just sit and watch.

And that’s when I see her up ahead. The dancer. She is spinning and ducking and stepping without fear. Not careless, but confidant and fully engaged. The path is her partner in the dance. She doesn’t ask where it leads. She isn’t talking. She is dancing.


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