ONE MORE STEP, one more breath……rested today after a long, deep, uninterrupted sleep, the first for such a long time. Contemplating Courage….the strange complexities and variations of it. Being forced to clean and empty my house (a compelling force that drives me like a harsh north wind), takes almost all the courage I have (and then some).
And yet, when faced with the dilemma of a trapped, deadly, Eastern Brown Snake some years ago…..I didn’t hesitate. Some garden netting I’d left lying in the bushland nearby, was caught in great ruffles behind the Snake’s head, slowly choking it. It was helpless and I felt responsible. So, with a prayer offered up to the Snake Clan, I knelt down, held it behind the head with my left hand, and began the long, slow process of cutting through the netting with a cheap, rather blunt, little penknife I always carried in my pocket.
The day was fiercely hot, filled with heat shimmer and the screams of cicadas and cockatoos…..the rescue process, dream like, as I bent to the task and continued cutting…..continually speaking to the snake, til the last few strands of net were falling away.
People talk about the Kundalini, rising up through the spine…..As the snake felt the net loosen, a powerful surge of energy shot up my left arm all the way to the shoulder….two more snips and it was free….but dazed and dehydrated it pushed forward into the pile of netting. Standing, I leaned forward, grabbed it by the tail, and pulled it free….a few powerful S-bends like a brown wave, and it was gone.
Drenched in sweat, fear hammering in my kidneys…..I stood up, drank some water, and went home.