Mystic Writer

Peeking out to see if there is a real world out there...

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Slip sliding away

Katrina moved north still potent. It crossed the plains, a continent wide swath of cloud. The cold edge of the north woods halted the progress and rain fell long and hard. Rita soon followed...

A small laugh of disbelief escaped, and I clamped down on my emotions before hysteria set in. I leaned forward at an odd angle, feeling my right leg sink a little deeper and tried to pull my left leg free of the mud. I could feel the muscles in my back start to cramp and I stopped. My left leg hadn't moved and now my right leg was buried to the hip.

I forced calm, took a moment. Suddenly the facts coalesced - the huge pond where normally there was an outwash prairie, the suddenly steeper face of the hill, the oddly angled patch of mud I had stupidly decided to cross...

Fear surged and I struggled crazily to free my leg. Nothing. The implications of being in the middle of a mudslide started to bubble up. The hill could slide again and I could be buried - the mud I was trapped in could slide into the newly formed pond, taking me with it... I resisted the urge to try muscling my way free despite the urgency - strength wasn't going to free me.

I breathed deep, suddenly realized I was within a half mile of an office skyscraper - I started to laugh, overcome with the irony that after the thousands of backcountry miles I've logged I might die within sight of a major metro area.

The laugh allowed me to think and I realized it was my shoe that was locked in the mud. I flexed my foot, wriggled my toes. I could feel mud slip into the shoe. I stopped, thought, realized the hole would quickly fill, realized I was too cheap to give up a fifty dollar shoe without a fight. I torqued my torso as far as I could, gave a twist and heave and my foot pulled free of my shoe and with a squishy sucking sound my leg was out of the ground.

I jammed my arm into the hole, my cheek pressed into the muck. I felt the edge of the shoe, worked my fingers till I had a good grip. Slowly, slowly, I twisted and torqued, freed it from the hole. It was filled and heavy. I threw it out past the edges of the slide. I repeated the process with my right foot, throwing that shoe too.

I lay prone, half submerged. I wriggled, stroked, slowly moving forward and suddenly I was at the edge. I rolled off, grabbed my shoes and gave them another toss, then followed them up the hill, hoping I was out of the path of any possible slides.

As I pulled on my shoes I realized it had been only 20 minutes since I had dropped off my son at pre-school. I started moving up the hill again, working muscles that I knew would stiffen in the cold driving rain. The heavy mud coating slowed me down and I pushed at it with my hands. The rain helped and soon most of it was off.

I looked down at myself, looked at the slicked tight nylon pants and shirt, realized I looked like I'd been mud wrestling. Feelings of survival and sex swirled and pulsed, and suddenly I was filled with need.

I pulled out my phone and called Lynnea...

20 Comments:

  • At 6:48 AM, Blogger Bec of the Ladies Lounge said…

    Hello, Michele sent me and now I certainly know what mw stands for!

     
  • At 6:55 AM, Blogger ribbiticus said…

    wow! i could almost feel all that mud and sludge. enjoy the rest of your weekend. here via michele today. :)

     
  • At 6:58 AM, Blogger Jean-Luc Picard said…

    Great post. Michele sent me this way.

     
  • At 7:00 AM, Blogger kenju said…

    Now I know how quicksand must feel. Michele sent me.

     
  • At 7:07 AM, Blogger Theo said…

    i wonder. what did you leave in the mud?

    hello, Michele sent me.

     
  • At 7:09 AM, Blogger phoenix said…

    I have so prayed that you had not quit writing! My prayers were answered. I have come here often to check on you, with no you until now!! Thank goodness Michele showed me you were still around! When I saw the MW I thought to myself, could it be? Yea!!!

    Another great post MW and this time don't be gone so long k?

     
  • At 7:17 AM, Blogger rashbre said…

    Gripping prose. My first visit here. I have been reading more. You do it well.

    and Hello, Michele sent me!

    rashbre

     
  • At 7:47 AM, Blogger FuzzBuck Fuzz said…

    Michele sent me.

    Stop by my place and have a look at Writer's blog.

    Interested?

     
  • At 7:48 AM, Blogger utenzi said…

    That was certainly an interesting journey, MW. Any particular reason your were thinking of being stuck in the mud? It seems like such a metaphor.

    Michele sent me to your muddy shores, MW.

     
  • At 8:12 AM, Blogger mw said…

    Phoenix - thank you, and I'll give you and Nicky credit for enticing me back here. I'm going to bite my tongue and not explain the long absence. I think the telling will help fill posts in times ahead.

    Utenzi - Very insightful, and I wrestled with bringing that insight into the post. It is certainly an issue I'm dealing with right now...

    Theo - some preconceptions about not paying attention on a simple urban walk?

    rashbre and ribbiticus: (That phrase rolls nicely - I think I'll use it the next time I feel the need for expletives). Thank you for your comments.

    fuzzbuck fuzz: Maybe...

     
  • At 8:19 AM, Blogger Carmi said…

    You use great imagery in your writing. It's so vivid that I can practically feel myself standing next to you as you go through the scene.

    I'm visiting from Michele's today. Lucky that I did: I enjoy great writing!

     
  • At 8:24 AM, Anonymous Last Girl On Earth said…

    GREAT POST! I can't wait to read more of your blog. Michele sent me and I'm glad she did. I'll be back! Have a great weekend!

     
  • At 8:47 AM, Blogger Ally said…

    Glad you're back. I can almost smell the mud ... . Hope the shoes cleaned up okay :).

     
  • At 10:02 AM, Blogger Train-Guy said…

    We were up north where Katrina went, it was pouring. Michele sent me.

     
  • At 10:57 AM, Blogger Judith said…

    Michele sent me!

     
  • At 2:50 AM, Blogger OldLady Of The Hills said…

    I almost felt like I couldn't breath....wow, what an amazing post. I was caught up in it fromhe moment I started to read...Michele is amazing the way she gets us all talking to each other...

     
  • At 2:52 AM, Anonymous Tatiana said…

    It is great to see you posting again. You are (as usual) an amazing writer.

     
  • At 12:43 AM, Anonymous Ivy said…

    Tis good to see you write again..

    Ivy

     
  • At 1:53 PM, Blogger sidhe said…

    Hi, MW, nobody sent me; I've just been hoping you'd start posting again. I had to chuckle at the way the oddest things seem to make a guy get amorous, it's something I've never quite figured out ... and then I thought hmmm, let's say my man showed up all muddy and having just bravely rescued himself, not to mention being thrifty enough not to let go of the shoe, and needing a bath and a change of clothes, yeah, I can see the possibilities...
    Glad you're back.

     
  • At 8:02 AM, Blogger David said…

    ( toasting )
    her e is to a new year full of creative writing

     

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