Traveling Monk Wind

Painting by Albert Bierstradt

Painting by Albert Bierstradt

Clouds hang thick and brooding above me, as I stand on the deck. The rain comes and goes at its own bidding, with thunder rolling across the rooftops with little punch. The sun sets over the hogbacks, barely visible between the heavy cloud cover and a thin stretch of blue that holds to the mountains as if it were snow. Lightning flashes and a spindly thread of electricity that whips outward toward the fading sun calls a passing goodnight.

It’s the air that has brought me to the railing, leaning out just a bit to catch it moving along the house. Over the past two years a love affair with wind has been brewing and percolating within me. I feel as if she comes to my house for visits. Sometimes a loud and rambunctious toddler, rattling my crib for attention, while at other times, so soft it’s as if she were a lover. Tonight she is the cloaked traveler asking for a night’s stay and a stable for her pony. There is something mysterious in the night air and a feeling of intensity and anticipation, all the while holding a gentleness as she moves by. I decide I shall call her the Traveling Monk Wind and turn my face more fully into her presence. I feel the air moving past the cells in my body pulling the skies electricity deep into me. There is an alchemy in this moment that hasn’t escaped me.

The rain returns, but the wind does not abate. Things seem more silent, though the sky flashes and the clouds rumble. I really should go to bed, I tell myself, but I linger and then, linger still.

Painting by Albert Beirstradt

Painting by Albert Beirstradt

38 thoughts on “Traveling Monk Wind

  1. Lovely, Noelle, Felt like I was looking over your shoulder Liz

    On Wed, Jun 29, 2016 at 8:32 AM, Meditation Travelogue wrote:

    > noellevignola posted: ” Clouds hang thick and brooding above me, as I > stand on the deck. The rain comes and goes at it’s own bidding, with > thunder rolling across the rooftops with little punch. The sun sets over > the hogbacks, barely visible between the heavy cloud cover and ” >

    • Indeed it has, but isn’t it in the strange hours of night or early morning that some of the most creative energy flows. As Rumi said, “The breezes at dawn have secrets to tell you
      Don’t go back to sleep!
      You must ask for what you really want.
      Don’t go back to sleep!
      People are going back and forth
      across the doorsill where the two worlds touch,
      The door is round and open
      Don’t go back to sleep!”

  2. I was thinking about you last week Noelle (I still read passages from your book often as daily motivational/spiritual uplifts) and wondering if everything was good because we hadn’t seen a post from you in awhile.

    Enjoyed this one, your words do a good job of describing the environment and your feelings toward the elements. I’m also a fan of the wind, I have bamboo wind chimes (I guess they’re not really chimes) that make a lovely hollow sound when a gentle breeze comes through. I’m surrounded by trees so I don’t get big blasts of wind, just a calming breeze occasionally. There is something refreshing about it. Lightning is cool as long as it’s far away. 😉

    • You are a love for reading my book. I am quite well, honestly. I could tell you my lack of writing is because I am busy, which I am, but that really isn’t it. Yes, I took a job promotion and my mornings which were such a lovely time to write have been sucked into a whirlwind of activity, but that’s not really it. I just seem to have gone silent. It started slow and grew. I can sit watching the mountains for some time and think of very little. I don’t feel rushed or like I’m procrastinating or dodging anything. I just seem to be enjoying the silence of my own mind. I go for long walks, meditate, do yoga, collage or just hang out with the cats. I have many ideas for writing projects, which I jot down, but don’t feel yet moved to start them. To call it a pregnant pause would be wrong, because that suggests a weight to it. It’s more like I’m in a kind of timeless suspension and something seems to be happening to me. At some point, I suspect I’ll stumble out of this space like Alice out of a Rabbit Hole. Until then it’s me and the dragonflies and the fat squirrel who eats all the bird seed most days. Glad you missed me, though. It’s important when lost in your mind you come out occasionally and remember there’s a world out here with beautifully rotting buildings that need to be explored!!

      • Ha! Well glad to hear things are generally good. Congrats on the promotion too! I can see how that would take more of your time.

        When I have a new dynamic in my life I tend to subconsciously focus on it and I can’t be “loose” and creative – at least not until things return to normal (or become routine) and I’m back in my comfort zone.

        Sounds like you are spending more time on yourself, and that you are at peace right now. That’s a wonderful thing, glad to hear it! 🙂

      • Well I am definitely more peaceful overall, though will confess taking on the new assignment has been more than I expected. I’m doing a lot of “Making this up as I go along”, which I mainly like, but it definitely leaves periods of “Now what?”

  3. I love your poet’s soul, Noelle. I can feel the intensity of the night and your love affair with the wind. Makes me want to be out on that deck with you drinking it in.

    • I take that as an immense compliment, my friend. I think there is something powerful about having intimate relationships with nature. I suspect it’s why you ride a motorcycle. You have a much more intimate relationship with the wind and the road.

  4. I think the wind brought me here, Noelle. We’ve had some lovely evening storms this week–over-sized rain drops and gusts of movement flush with cold that dart and feint through the heat– and I’ve caught myself looking right where the lightning was trying to hide a couple of times. Truly lovely writing you’ve given here, which comes from a sweet acceptance of life’s profound presence in the air itself. It is all around us.


    • I love your description of the evening storms. They are so full of character and feeling, that I think we fly past as we run inside, turn on the lights, close up the windows and start trying to sort out our life for the next day. We miss all the drama and excitement right outside our front door and I truly believe, that energy enlivens us deeply. So lovely of you to stop by, my friend, Peace and grace to you, as well. BTW, how are things going with your second book. I read excerpts from your first book a few nights a week. They are lovely pieces to take with me to sleep.

  5. I loved the feeling in those paintings. The photos of the storm that night just didn’t cut it. But when I saw Bierstradt’s paintings they just had that feeling that is so hard to express. Thanks for stopping by my friend.

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