To Friends From The Road

To Friends From The Road

Imagine a highway,
Bathed in soft light in the morning,
Shallow hills gently winding
Past fields of corn and wheat
With tufts of trees holding in a silence
Rich in golden and green.

And you, hemmed in the quiet openness,
A lone highway dot challenging distance,
Moving slowly along, feeling the whole wide earth
Smiling straight at you and
Every ounce of you wanting to place
A bowed forehead at the feet of so much wonder.

You crest a hill and start down towards
A bridge over a muddy stream
Into a small valley tucked between hills.
And as you get closer to the bridge
You see them, just a few at first then more;
They begin to stir as you approach
Sensing a new player in the game.
Suddenly hundreds and hundreds are diving,
Swooping and singing all around you,
Swallows in a song of flying dance.

Transfixing you with the wish
To join in their joyful sport,
Feeling your heart soaring, flying with them
Here and there into long dives arcing down below the bridge,
Sound and movement bursting in every direction.
Bursting through the bounds of this moment
with shining happiness and wonder.

Reluctantly you move on as a few swoop to say goodbye
And your eyes keep looking back in disbelief
At this gift on this highway in this world.
And you continue on your way
Up and out of this valley to the next
Slowly moving on, footfalls in the silence.
Heart bounding with the hills, fields and
Friendship of swallows.

– Prabhakar.

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