Every red osier dogwood is a placenta.
It streams with blood into the sky …
… or it catches the sky, and brings it to you.
Traditionally in this country it was used to control pregnancy and to stop bleeding after childbirth. That’s quite likely because it catches the seeds from these cattails, which are male (top) and female (below) flowers in one.
It holds them in the air for a later time, or dries them out, rather than allowing them to enter water …
… and carry the sun into it.
It stands apart from the two worlds.
It is at balance with earth and sky.
It is a screen of nerves, or blood, in the Earth’s mind, or body.
They are the same thing, and so are you: the one that is two, and still one, and still many.
This is the blood.
The red sea in your veins is no different. Rather than a metaphor, like this…
“The red of the dogwood is like the red of my blood, and the patterns of it are like the arteries in my eye.”
… there is this instead:
The complexities of the world are written here. We may read them, with minds built out of this same blood. If put in words, they might be reducible to something like this:
Blood flows through the dogwood and my eye, my heart, and my hand.
Ah, the heart, dear thing. Sure, it’s in the chest, but it’s also here, simultaneously:
Red Hill, John Day
It’s good to remember, of course, that this blood is also the screen of nerves in the mind. Perhaps you can see the thoughts collecting on neural points of gravity and tension below?
That is also blood. This is sacred medicine. It is not a metaphor, and it is not a unity broken apart into body and mind, earth and sky, thought and feeling, or anything else. It is as unified as light. Our ancestors didn’t learn to read the world by trial and error. They lived it.
Perhaps you see how words direct our thoughts away from our knowledge? It’s not that
it’s as unified as light.
Rather, dogwood and light are one.
More clearly: dogwood, light, blood, mind, water, heart, birth, water, conception and life are one.
In this form, in this holding up, the sun speaks. It becomes offering. Well, it was all along, but we reach out to it, we respond to the sun’s hand with our own.
There is no end to the listening, which is the mirror of the speech. Yes, the hand listens.
Yes, the hand teaches, and speaks. Yes, the mind is a hand.
Yes, the hand is a mind.