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  • Writer's picturejimurbanlife

In the Center of the Arch



I’ve walked way to far in the hot, late afternoon sun. I am sweating beyond comfort and my feet hurt, but I feel like I need to visit the arch since I’m in famous St Louis.


I wait my turn to go through security with lines of people, people jamming the turnstiles for tickets, and then another 45 minutes to get in the car to ride to the top of the arch. I’m only in this confined place for a few minutes, with crowds of people everywhere, when I know it isn’t for me. I decide to leave and can’t get out fast enough. Sweat is still pouring out of me from the long, hot walk — it doesn’t get any better when I go from inside to out.


There it is, the heat hits me again! I walk toward the center of the arch in the grassy area, the mighty Mississippi River to my left, finally reaching what seems like the middle of the Arch. I feel a breeze blowing from the east. I sit down cross-legged in the grass, facing the river and the breeze. I close my eyes with my hands resting on my knees. The sweat seeps from the pores of my skin, sweaty hands atop sweaty knees, an indescribable energy flows through me from this connection.


All I can hear are people talking, traffic racing by, and sirens from the nearby downtown. I relax my entire body, I let my intentions go and ask for relief and for me to know my purpose in this place. As I feel relaxation move through me, I can tell the noise is beginning to fade into the constant ringing in my ears. Only this time it is welcomed that I cannot hear. I continue into relaxation and can feel the wind blowing on my face and body, coming from across and over the river. The ringing in my ears is so intense it dulls the voices in my head. It is so constant that I hear it as music.


I continue to relax and can feel the wind blowing on my face and body as if coming from the across the river and through the magnificent arch only for me. Suddenly it seemed no one else was there — only me. In my mind the huge arch had narrowed with me in the center bringing that breeze from far away, only for me. With my eyes continually still closed, I realize my feet don’t hurt anymore and I can’t feel my hands resting on my knees. I can’t hear and the breeze seems like it has all of me. I feel as if I am suspended. I think, who said you can’t see the wind?


I could certainly see it at this very moment in my mind with my eyes closed. I could see it in vivid yet variegated colors of yellow, green, blue and many combinations, indescribable mixes. I could see the trees blowing in my direction, the ripples of water coming my way as well. As my eyes remained closed, I could see microscopic particles of the trees, grass and all living things blowing in the streams and swirls of color coming directly at my suspended self. The breeze seemed to be so gentle, yet so direct toward me through the arch, and it began to blow more precise as all of my physical being seemed to be swept away. Now only my center self is left and is as invisible as the carpet that carries me. No more sweat, no more sound, no more hurting feet, just suspended bliss with no weight and certainly no intentions. At this moment I couldn’t comprehend the realization I was having, nor could I discern if I was stationary and the wind was coming at me or if the physical plain was stationary and I was moving forward at a rapid yet gentle pace.


Where I had arrived I didn’t want to leave. I was in a space that seemed to have all the answers, which were none, and none were necessary. I didn’t want my irritating intentions back — I was content.


Now, the breeze began to lighten. The colors were different as if only a strong yellow. The heat began to return. I could feel my shirt, only it was now dry. My skin felt sensitive from the air. Now my feet began to feel tired as they had before. I felt as if I had been on a journey and been gone all afternoon. As I opened my eyes I was in the exact same sitting position as I had been a bit earlier. The yellow light was still present, it was the sun and hot as ever. I felt a fantastic love and cleared of any worries. Seemed as all was going to be the way it is intended to be, as it always is. And for me, my journey had allowed the realization that its ok to just be. Intentions are not always necessary. Just let life unfold. I smiled really big and started my walk back to the hotel with my hurting feet. I continued to smile and seemed OK that my feet hurt, its OK. Just be!


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