Ally

 

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Ally

 

The day you ran from the moose,

lurching off the trail to crouch behind

trees,

 

everything changed.

I don’t mean you were trampled —

outside of your mind, that is —

you know, the way people are

in Alaska.

 

I don’t mean either that you

became enlightened,

embodying

the moment before

fear

stole your breath,

when you were stilled, face to face

with the moose,

both of you

surprised and at first

unalarmed.

 

I mean instead that you

finally perceived how

fear —

that ancient,

ancestral,

instinctual response —

could be

your ally.

 

Listen.

This matters.

For so long you have resisted it,

hiding,

avoiding,

relenting.

You have actually found ways to fear

your fear.

You find danger

everywhere.

 

It’s not your fault,

nor your nature.

You ponder if

maybe,

had you managed to stay

right there,

in front of that moose —

her steaming exhale,

her velveted ears,

her eyelashed gaze —

maybe

fear did not belong.

You wonder: had you stayed relaxed,

would the moose

have done the same?

 

I know why you ask.

There is love in that question,

 

and we all ponder love.

But wait,

look closer.

You are here because

fear actually

fits

that moment.

I mean, instead of every moment.

Can you see how

fear

gave you this story,

and the chance

to tell another?

 

Turn towards this agile ally.

You do not walk life’s edge

alone.

Fear connects us all

when given this narrow space.

Here it belongs balanced

on this knife-like ridge,

this serpentine arete.

Fear is a trusted spine running

between each breathless, stunned moment,

where before meets

after,

and you

and moose

and all things

are bound together.

5 thoughts on “Ally

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