Monday, August 11, 2014

My OWN Labyrinth - Part 2

When I daydreamed of building a labyrinth in our yard, I naively imagined that we would whip it into shape in a weekend or two.

Labyrinth laborers 
preparing the ground
setting the design
stepping back 
arms folded

It is Step 2 in my 3-Step Plan. 
1. Complete visits
2. Build labyrinth
3. Write *book

But two weeks into the project, sitting on a pile of bricks, I slow down long enough to hear that voice, the one that lets me fret a bit before imparting her wisdom. Today it comes in the form of a question. 
"Have you learned nothing on this journey?" she asks. 
I detect impatience.

Of course, I know where she's headed with this line of questioning. I know...but I forget.

The path takes time to walk. 
There are lessons to be learned in the doing, the day-to-day, the creation.
Pay attention to what is before you.

The "army" of laborers has temporarily left. Without them I could not have begun. 

Anne Hornstein, whose labyrinth in Florida was the first I walked on my fifty-state journey,
helps me measure the center. She "happened" to be driving to Colorado and
offered to consecrate the space and help with the lay-out. 

Drew unloads 100+ bricks and pushes them,
one wheelbarrow load at a time,
to the labyrinth site (opposite side of the house.)
Our son-in-law, Ben, precisely measures
the center circle of bricks.

The labyrinth and I share the space for quiet hours, surrounded by trees, birdsong and inquisitive mosquitoes, only moderately repelled by Deep Woods Off. 

It won't be finished for several months, as I go back and forth to New York, and as other hands take turns digging trenches and laying bricks.
I take a deep breath and realize that's as it should be.

The labyrinth is growing, 
one brick at a time.
As am I.

 *working title of book -
  Labyrinth Journeys
 Fifty States… Fifty-One Stories 



  1. That is a LOT of work! I contemplated digging trenches and laying brick, but decided against it. Now,as we struggle to keep the paths mowed, I wish we had done it that way. I do love my rock-outlined paths, but it is a lot of work to keep up. You will be very happy you took the extra time and energy at the outset.

    It really looks like a very beautiful site. I can hardly wait to come walk it.

    1. Hi Ellie,
      Yes, it is a lot of work, but I wanted one that I could mow over. Hopefully, the brick and grass will be flush for easier maintenance. The rock that you sent me from your labyrinth will find a special place in mine. :-)

  2. I like the working title of your book. this is a very reflective entry, reminding us all to slow down and let our goals and journeys evolve. You and your team have done quite a bit of work so far.

  3. Thanks, Nola! "Evolve" is the perfect word for this labyrinth and our journeys, in general. I appreciate your ongoing interest, encouragement and feedback!! Looking forward to seeing you in Jersey City soon. :-)

  4. Lovely! It's so exciting to watch this project take shape.

  5. Thanks. :-) I can't wait to see what Ben, and helper Ruby, have added to the labyrinth.

  6. What a lesson as I plow through life. Taking the proper time, not my nature, but your message reminds me of the wisdom. I love the symmetry of your labyrinth.

    1. It is a lesson I continue to learn and try to practice, too, Vanda. Walking the labyrinth is a gentle reminder to value each step.

  7. Twylla, It looks incredible!!! You should be so proud. I absolutely love the fact that your supportive family has taken part. Love the title (and the poem). :)

    1. It's an exciting process, Lenae! Thanks so much for your kind words. I am proud, not only that the labyrinth is developing, but that I can hoe, shovel, carry bricks and still move the next day. :-)


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