Trancing [12]

After a few seconds of awkwardness, there was the normal reset of attention. Grace politely asked me about my life, my story.
It was comfortable small talk, really. I didn’t need to try to impress anybody. What could I possibly say to impress them, anyway? So I just kept it simple.
“I’m retired. Divorced. Don’t do a lot. Used to do some social work, a bit of teaching back in the day. A little bit of social activism, once upon a time. Nothing exciting, really.” I laughed, “And my work history’s probably much shorter than yours.”
This drew a chuckle.
Then, as is often the case whenever humans congregate around a fire, we all just quietly tuned into the flames for a little while.
This was when it got weird again.
I was enjoying the small flame in front of me, tuning out to its movement, sound, and smell.
I could feel myself relaxing inside my body, could feel the welcoming relief of the stress dissipating and my heart reopening to the world.
It’s the universal feeling of safety and connection that is part of “home and hearth”. Which is, after all, what a cooking fire has always been, to everybody, for thousands of years. Comfort. Relaxation. Gentle tranquillity and a bit of a trance.
This is why there were goddesses of the hearth. Because of that sublime feeling of peace, of safety.
In settling into that vibe, I started to hear the larger world beyond- wind in the trees, water on the lake, birds singing… I suddenly realized that I hadn’t felt this for months. Maybe even years. It was sublime and vast and small and simple all at once.
“Necessary”, the word came from inside me but somehow not. Some part of me that didn’t get listened to often enough. Not my ‘everyday face’, but a different piece of me.
“Absolutely.” Grace glanced over at me and smiled.
I was a little embarrassed. Hadn’t realized I’d spoken aloud.
Albert broke out of the peaceful group trance then, drew himself up for a moment, not looking at either of us, or speaking, and then quietly moved off down the lake out of sight, for a bit.
Grace watched him go out of sight, then quietly rose and started putting all of their kit away into packs and bundles. It was surprisingly compact and efficient, when she was done.
I sat clinging to the ebbing hearth-vibe for a little longer, relishing it. Necessary indeed.

Published by goddesswest

I'm a painter and am writing something now. People keep asking me to put it together in an easier to access place, so here I am. Plan to get some of my artwork in here too, eventually.

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