Tuesday, May 31, 2005

the woods

I'm reading a journal I've just finished filling, which I began 17 February. (and I'm also now thinking I could include in this blog some of the personal journal writings during this year I had with my students.) I don't know. I'll just start here and type in this one and see how that feels.

18 February 2005 I'm sitting on a rotted fallen tree, my feet on a rotted fallen branch. God but it's good to be in the woods again! And the mud and the bugs and the coming darkness. I haven't seen a black night in a long time. In fact, the nights in my neighborhood are orange. More than lit. Lit and noisy about it.
It's a young woods. I can see Walter Anderson and his symmetry here. That's the biggest thing about the woods for me, its symmetry and balance and completeness and its perfection. I would love to bring my students to the woods, try to help them understand a different kind of logic and order. There isn't a wrong or right. This isn't, either. But the fact that it grows on its own, out of our hands and control, makes me trust it more. I think they could understand that. Eventually. That there is an order, even when it's not due to our manipulation. That there need not be thought and worry and concern a hundred percent of the time, that it's honestly possible to relax and let the world rise and fall around us, that we don't have to work all the time. That's what they don't know. We don't need to work all the time. We aren't in charge of absolutely everything. It's possible to relax, to just let Nature carry on and relax. They don't know what it means to live in a way -- to live without the stress of being smart and good and strong and sharp. They don't know that it's possible to live without watching their backs. They do not know this. What a thing! They do not know what it means to be safe. I would love to bring them here.



Anonymous Cassandra said...

What makes this special place so safe to you? I believe your classroom became just like these woods for some of your students -- they felt safe there and recognized how life goes on around them and with them and without them, all at the same time.

When you get the chance, ask your students how they define a "safe place"? What qualities, attributes, and special features exist there that either do not exist elsewhere or cannot be created elsewhere?

9:50 PM  
Anonymous nisha said...

Good work, i like your blog theme, and content ofcourse

10:34 PM  

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