the whoosh of stillness that comes

the whoosh of stillness
that comes with
sitting on the wooden stool
after getting home from singing
in the drizzling rain, planting garlic, harvesting the last of the cabbages,
pulling out dandelion, mulching the beds, among the other things, with all those good people that came out to
be with me in the

garden

the slight movement of ribcage
(mine)
soft sounds of car tires on wet pavement
and then the clanking of someone putting away dishes downstairs,
remembering that mine are still dirty in the sink
but not giving into the urge to call out
i’ll do those!
and instead just sitting there
noticing the movement of air
with a particular
heaviness
of settling into my skin, holding the vibrations of all of the talking singing event-organizing more talking hugging laughing more singing more event-organizing that i did in the
morning

perfectly still

Lying perfectly still on the carpet in my room, at about three o clock in the afternoon on saturday, moving in and out of dreaming and acute awareness of the blood pumping through my body, thinking for a moment about the vietnamese walking stick bug, which is in order of insects called
Phasmatodea.

phasma is from the latin for ghost, referring to their excellent camouflage, which includes their ability to be perfectly still for hours and hours.

several of these walking stick bugs live in a glass enclosure at the education center where I work, and i stop by the welcome desk to watch their usually unmoving bodies
clinging to cut branches of multiflora rose.

the lifespan of a vietnamese walking stick bug is about five to seven months. they do not need mates to reproduce. there are only females in the glass enclosure, and they have been successfully breeding (parthenogenetically) for about
eight years.