Lo que ves es lo que tienes/ What You See Is What You Get

por Annie Dillard [English below]

Naranjo de Luisiana/Osage Orange Tree

Cuando tenía seis o siete años y vivía en Pittsburgh, solía tomar un precioso centavo y esconderlo para que alguien más lo encontrara. Fue una compulsión curiosa; lamentablemente, nunca me ha motivado el hacer lo mismo desde entonces. Por alguna razón, siempre “escondí” el centavo a lo largo del mismo tramo de acera hacia el norte. Lo acuñaría en las raíces de un sicómoro, por ejemplo, o en un agujero dejado por un trozo de acera astillado. Luego tomaba un trozo de tiza o gis  y, comenzando en cada extremo de la cuadra, dibujaba enormes flechas que conducían al centavo desde ambas direcciones. Después de que aprendí a escribir, etiqueté las flechas: SORPRESA ADELANTE o DINERO EN ESTE RUMBO.  Estaba muy emocionada, durante todo estos esquemas de flechas, al pensar en la primer persona afortunad@ que recibiría de esta manera, independientemente del mérito, un regalo gratuito del universo. Pero nunca aceché. Me iría directamente a casa y no pensaría en el asunto hasta que, unos meses después, el impulso de esconder otro centavo me atrapara nuevamente.

Todavía es la primera semana de enero y tengo grandes planes. He estado pensando en ver. Hay muchas cosas que ver, regalos sin envolver y sorpresas regaladas. El planeta está bastante tachonado y cubierto de centavos arrojados por una mano generosa. Pero, y este es el punto, ¿quién se emociona con un simple centavo? Si sigues una flecha, si te agachas inmóvil en una orilla para ver una vibración temblorosa en el agua y eres recompensad@ al ver a una rata remando desde su guarida, contarás ese trozito de cobre, e seguirás tu camino de manera triste? De hecho, es una pobreza extrema cuando un human@ está tan desnutrid@ y cansad@ que no se inclinará para recoger un centavo. Pero si cultivas una pobreza saludable y de simplicidad, de modo que encontrar un centavo literalmente te alegrará el día, entonces, dado que el planeta está plantado en centavos, con tu pobreza has comprado toda una vida de días. Es así de simple. Lo que ves, es lo que tienes.

… Durante una semana, en un septiembre pasado, los “mirlos de alas rojas” migratorios se alimentaban junto al arroyo en atras de la casa. Un día salí a investigar el ruido; me acerqué a un árbol, un naranjo de Luisiana, y cientos de pájaros se fueron volando. Simplemente se materializaron del árbol. Vi un árbol, luego un batido de color, luego un árbol nuevamente. Me acerqué y otros cien mirlos tomaron vuelo. Ni una rama, ni un palito vibrando: las aves aparentemente no tenían peso y eran invisibles. O, era como si las hojas del Naranjo de Luisiana hubieran sido liberadas de un hechizo en forma de mirlos de alas rojas; volaron del árbol, me llamaron la atención en el cielo y desaparecieron. […] Estas apariencias se atrapan en mi garganta; son los obsequios, los cobres brillantes en las raíces de los árboles.

Todo es cuestión de mantener los ojos abiertos.

por  Annie Dillard -Extraído de Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

Mirlo de Alas Rojas/ Red-winged Blackbird

When I was six or seven years old, growing up in Pittsburgh, I used to take a precious penny of my own and hide it for someone else to find. It was a curious compulsion; sadly, I’ve never been seized by it since. For some reason I always “hid” the penny along the same stretch of sidewalk up the street. I would cradle it at the roots of a sycamore, say, or in a hole left by a chipped-off piece of sidewalk. Then I would take a piece of chalk, and, starting at either end of the block, draw huge arrows leading up to the penny from both directions. After I learned to write I labeled the arrows: SURPRISE AHEAD or MONEY THIS WAY. I was greatly excited, during all this arrow-drawing, at the thought of the first lucky passer-by who would receive in this way, regardless of merit, a free gift from the universe. But I never lurked about. I would go straight home and not give the matter another thought, until, some months later, I would be gripped again by the impulse to hide another penny.

It is still the first week in January, and I’ve got great plans. I’ve been thinking about seeing. There are lots of things to see, unwrapped gifts and free surprises. The world is fairly studded and strewn with pennies cast broadside from a generous hand. But—and this is the point—who gets excited by a mere penny? If you follow one arrow, if you crouch motionless on a bank to watch a tremulous ripple thrill on the water and are rewarded by the sight of a muskrat kid paddling from its den, will you count that sight a chip of copper only, and go your rueful way? It is dire poverty indeed when a man is so malnourished and fatigued that he won’t stoop to pick up a penny. But if you cultivate a healthy poverty and simplicity, so that finding a penny will literally make your day, then, since the world is in fact planted in pennies, you have with your poverty bought a lifetime of days. It is that simple. What you see is what you get.

…For a week last September migrating red-winged blackbirds were feeding heavily down by the creek at the back of the house. One day I went out to investigate the racket; I walked up to a tree, an Osage orange, and a hundred birds flew away. They simply materialized out of the tree. I saw a tree, then a whisk of color, then a tree again. I walked closer and another hundred blackbirds took flight. Not a branch, not a twig budged: the birds were apparently weightless as well as invisible. Or, it was as if the leaves of the Osage orange had been freed from a spell in the form of red- winged blackbirds; they flew from the tree, caught my eye in the sky, and vanished. […] These appearances catch at my throat; they are the free gifts, the bright coppers at the roots of trees.

It’s all a matter of keeping my eyes open.

By Annie Dillard–Excerpt from  Pilgrim at Tinker Creek

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About awakinOAK

Intentionally located in East Oakland -- to, on the one hand, overcome institutionalized violence and on the other hand, be showered by the multicultural love and wisdom from neighbors-- this small community strives for integral nonviolence and supports activities that foster fearlessness, courage, autonomy, unconditional love and compassion for all beings. Every Friday for the last 8 years, the anchors of Awakin Oakland -- whose main door is unlocked 24hrs, all days of the week -- host "Wednesdays on Fridays", an open-house meditation night that was inspired by a family in Santa Clara who has been doing this for close to 22 years [2019]. Also, for the last three years, these Awakin circles in Oakland have been hosted every other week in Spanish as a way to invite sharings closer to the heart from the large Spanish speaking migrant community in this neighborhood.
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