Soul searching is not for the weak of heart. I am beginning to believe I am coming into my age of wisdom and that means there has been a lot of soul searching in order to get here. I have become an overly sensitive cry-baby at times, with an over abundance of empathy for just about everything my eyes see. I go around thanking everything quietly so no one will hear me and believe I am crazy. The touch of a flower petal brought me tears for its being as I felt its existence , the same existence we both share or feel as living things. I could not pass it by without thanking it for blooming.
I have not always been as aware of my surroundings as I am now and in the small southern town in which we live, my surroundings are not always so beautiful. This is winter is the season of death. Recently, I was driving back into Yazoo and it felt as if I was going into a stark scene of a gothic novel. The outskirts of town were bleak and colorless, except for the gold and green grasses grown for wintering cows. I had to pause all radio and play solemn music, that better suited my feelings. Leafless trees and stripped vines that were kudzu green in summer are ghostly images of looming shapes. I stopped to stare once and pulled off the highway, as if it was the first time I had noted the colors in these leafless trees in the distance. Gray, just shades of gray.
Coming into the city proper, I saw first the trash in and around everything – all white against the dead leaves, left there, waiting for weeds to cover it up again in springtime. Desperate to finish the drive, and winding up the last turn in the road home, I saw a doe about to cross the road. Caught off guard, she stopped and I did too. We sat together for what seemed a long time just staring at each other, not moving. I suppose it was the headlights even at 4:00pm that made her stand so still, but she did, like a pose, a noise must have alarmed her, but instead of dashing across the road in front of me, she walked slowly, while looking my way until across the road she leapt out of sight. I began to breathe again. My eyes flooded with tears and all I could do was thank her.