The River and How She Heals

By Amber D. Stoner

May 14, 2018

The River and How She Heals

When the house went cold—not the oxygen and nitrogen, but the mood, the atmosphere around my parents—when that froze into stasis, into wariness, into step-lightly-quietly-invisibly, I would retreat outside where I could breathe without inhaling daggers of ice. I could walk, exhale, stand still and let the fluid air move past me, that river-wind, the water-breeze. To the river I walked to watch geese waddle, fish jump, crayfish snap. I climb my tree. I sink into her branches, her cradling limbs; this bough won’t break. I follow the turbulence of the waves as the river tumbles past boulders and semi-submerged logs. Ripple, spiral, swirl: the action and ease of flowing water. Too soon the earth turns away from the sun and I can’t stay by the river forever, so I tuck the images inside me, nestle the sights and smells into the nooks of my body. I nurture that river within and carry her with me: to school the next day, to my home when it grows chill again, all the way into the future to draw upon when needed. This river never runs dry.

Comments (11) - Post a Comment
Beautiful words, images and coping strategy. Thank you. May we all find our own river..........
Valerie at 8:26am EDT - May 14, 2018
This so speaks to me. I , too, know "that river wind, the water breeze, and the tree where I was once able to "sink into her branches". Thank you for the beautiful language which brings those memories to life. I will share with my granddaughters to whom I have told my stories of refuge found in a sheltering tree and the mighty Mississippi River that feeds this town with an at times over abundance.
Lynda at 8:36am EDT - May 14, 2018
THIS. Such a beautiful wrought piece of sensory writing. Thank you for this bit of beauty.
ryder ziebarth at 8:36am EDT - May 14, 2018
A truly beautiful thing. I have a place like this too. Thank you for sharing.
Lindsay Gerano at 8:48am EDT - May 14, 2018
Amber, you took me with you (thank you) and I tucked the images, sights, sounds, comfort—into my bodily nooks as well. Thank you for the reminder to step outside and drink in the balm of Earth's glories, the equilibrium and perfect truth that reside outside of humanity's shortcomings, of which Mother Nature has none.
Britton Minor at 8:53am EDT - May 14, 2018
I love how you have cast nature as refuge/cradle following those initial sentences--what a beautiful sensory piece--.
tcmb at 9:55am EDT - May 14, 2018
Beautiful description of nurturing yourself as a child and taking that with you to adulthood. Inspiring.
Peggy Lamb at 10:19am EDT - May 14, 2018
This is just lovely, and so fully realized. Thank you!
Denise at 1:36pm EDT - May 14, 2018
Ahhh, Amber... these beautiful words run through me as cleansingly sweetly as the first time... thank you! A good reminder of what we carry inside, how we can attune to sanctuary where love flows freely... xoxoxo
Rox at 1:37pm EDT - May 14, 2018
Thank you all for the encouraging comments. Makes my week.
Amber D. Stoner at 4:21pm EDT - May 14, 2018
Beautifully written. Thank you!
Olga at 12:14pm EDT - May 15, 2018

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