1. Sit still for a long time.

  2. Fetch the basket, your favorite one made of dark reeds, oblong in shape. Big enough to swaddle a baby inside and float it down the Nile.

  3. It’s too heavy to lift, like there are river stones weighing it down. Peering inside, there is only emptiness.

  4. Make a fire in the basket, add the red sky of the morning, maha akasha, dripping sweet water melted from the recent snowfall to create smoke.

  5. See, how is it lighter now? Light enough to drag to the cleared patch of earth. Brush the ground.

  6. Lay sticks in a pattern, leaves and flowers if it’s spring, summer or fall.

  7. Add your wildness, queerness, longing, desire, dreams and lie facedown beside the basket. Listen to the bird-song and the tree-speak.

  8. Add your sister’s parkinson’s, your addictions, your fears, hatreds, cravings. The basket is heavy again, are you surprised? You forgot to add love. Do it now, it’s never too late.

  9. Begin to hum and then sing, from some atavistic place, deep and guttural. Add rocking or swaying. Sing forever and a day.

  10. Sit still in the quiet for a long time. Before you leave, pray to the dignity in your spine, the connection in your ribs, your ancestors at your back, the unknown before you. Rest in your heart