author of the oarsman
September 22, 2017

I moved over to Santa Barbara from Ojai recently. Ojai is a beautiful town, filled with room for contemplation and surrounded by mountains welcoming hikers with watching embraces. It is a tiny town, with little traffic, noise or distractions, but it was getting a bit too isolating for me.

I will never forget the gift that the three years in Ojai gave me: reconnecting to the quiet within to such a depth that it birthed a desire to open up my heart and share it somehow… with writing being the current expression of that.

Today I hiked up Rattlesnake Canyon Trail, along a babbling creek, pestering flies, and heavy heat. I was thrilled by the lack of stillness in me, the dance of that center inside, that made-up, simultaneous victim and controller of the story that spins like a top, unable to stop flipping between pasts and futures.

I was thrilled by the lack of stillness because it made it more precious when I dropped back to stillness every now and then on the hike. It felt like a sigh coupled with a smile, an easy-going free-ness, a return home.