A quick breath

One being

Reflection at the PDX Japanese Garden

We’re all the puddle.

Everywhere, just look–
organs in the same body,
one being, one breath.

Plant breathes out; you breathe in. Whose breath is it? Eat the plant; whose body is it? Plant fiber is broken down by the myriad beings in the gut. How many are you? Drink water that has danced through the sky as snow, refracted countless rainbows, passed through seas and sewers and the veins of ages of beings before you. You are mostly water; who haven’t you been? Every cell made of recycled matter that was once an oak tree, a cow pie, a squid–and before all of that, a star. Feel how you still shine in the sky?

Is your eye truly separate from your intestines? Would you rather do without one or the other? How about your heart? Is it truly separate from your brain? Could you do without one or the other? Can the intestines beat, or the eye think? She may be here, and you may be there; but where do you end, and where does she begin? Take a closer look. Well, actually, the closer you look, the more elusive our boundaries get, until…


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