Saturday, July 20, 2013

Flight Pattern

Bill had an experience in February and just wrote about it yesterday.  Needed to share it via 2 + 2 = 5.  A great example of that ongoing spirit and conundrum.  Here goes:
Several months ago, I went to a sheltered workshop to meet with a young woman who goes there.   She was very excited because they were going to do a performance of “The Lion King” that morning and she had a starring role.  It was about 15 minutes till the whole thing was to take place, so I said I would wait till after the performance to meet with her.
There was a crowd to see the show.  We gathered in a large open area that separated the glass door entrance from the work floor.   It was one of those raw February mornings. The air was cold and rainy.  The clouds outside moved slowly across the ground like sleep walkers, causing the florescent lights in the ceiling tiles to glow unnaturally bright.  Several minutes passed with a lot of frantic talk echoing from the other end of a long hallway.  Last minute pep talks and cue reminders etc.  All I could see were those slow moving clouds out the front entrance. 
Eventually the music started and after what seemed to be a long time without seeing anything a fluttering bird girl appeared.  This bird girl was a tiny woman wearing red sweats, yellow socks, a yellow beaked bird mask that covered her face, and yellow pool-floaties for wings.  I was entranced at that moment first seeing this delicate creature flutter high then low, swooping into the audience and back down the hallway out of view. 
I am probably one of the only people still left who hasn’t seen the movie or the play.  I am pretty sure this performance however took many liberties.  The young lady I was there to see played the lion’s mother.  As excited as she was before it began, her performance was delivered with minimal effort.  It was as if she had worn herself out from all the excitement.  The performance was a beautifully clumsy mess.  However, seeing this bird girl moving, dancing, flying through this florescent lit space into and out of the performance itself, with grayest of gray clouds moving behind her, struck me in a profound way.  It was a silent and delicate thing like Kabuki. It was like she was channeling some ancient bird spirit.  Her flight pattern seemed to carry a message of joy uncomplicated and completely mysterious. 
I will never forget it and only wish I could do something that powerful.