Hill Walk with Daughter
by Eamon Grennan
All small things on the hill we three are climbing—heather, ground-hugging juniper, dwarf
cinquefoil—are making space for themselves on turf and rock where ferns shelter in holes so the
wind won’t matter. It’s their fierce attachment to the place they’ve tenanted and are at last at
home in I notice, their silent existences defying wind and weather, drawing life from the day by day,
and here in this place—through the steady procession of seasons—sparsely shining. Now you step and I
stumble behind our daughter who goes lightly between heather roots, bracken, chunked limestone—hurdling
rocky boggy patches like a kid goat, surefooted as her nineteen years can make her. She turns, waves at us,
then presses on to where, when we achieve the windy summit, we’ll find her seated calm as a space-staring,
placating Buddha, beholding, as we do, how the big cloud-world raises its towered mansions and tumbled
otherworldly shapes to lord it over all us small creatures feeling the clear mountain air move about us:
in it and breathing it in together.
Copyright © 2010 by Eamon Grennan.