Drag (Camino Lessons – #1)

¡Las cigüeñas crotorea! (The storks make stork sounds!)

The Spanish word crotorear means to make the clacking sound a stork makes with its beak. I didn’t learn this magical word until after I returned from Spain and had completed the Camino, where this reverberating sound sometimes mesmerized me from above. These majestic birds perched in their enormous nests, clattering to each other but seemingly greeting me from church steeples and tops of posts.

This was the best picture of storks I got. 😅

Seeing them in flight one day on the Meseta, I was enthralled by the way they moved their wings to maneuver around the sky, gliding exactly where they intended. A simple spread and dip of several feathers on the tip of one wing created enough drag to turn smoothly in a full, looping circle. And I thought, as one has plenty of time to think on the Meseta, “Huh. That’s metaphorical, innit?”

Even the smallest amount of drag can put you on a completely different course, for better or worse.

The old patterns pull,

dragging toward well-worn ruts.

The overcoming of wired-together paths

feels insurmountable

unless done one lurch,

one pulse,

one beat at a time

with feather lightness.

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