Crumbling walls extravaganza

Oh, my kin Creek, how I’ve missed you!

Sofia Batalha
3 min readFeb 18, 2024
ler em português aqui.

After a long and excruciating absence, I finally returned, listening to the Creek calling while my body gestured in acknowledgement. I finally found the inner time and availability to return to the Creek’s shores. Or maybe the visceral need for solace and company was made unbearable.

After being away for so long, thick walls have risen in me. Higher and higher.

I parked the car nearby, listening to the running water wash. My heart throbbed as I got nearer, and the water sounds became louder; how I missed these living vibrations, how I desired this communion. It was like returning home after a long time away, and tears rolled down my face, crying in gratitude to be able to return. Oh, my kin Creek, how I missed you! Tears of happiness to be able to listen to these waters, and a deep sorrow for keeping myself away for so long.

These are ancient walls, cultural walls that, we are told, are meant to keep us safe. Inside and safe. Severed and safe. Controlled and safe.

The Creek’s water is high; I’ve never seen them like this before. Last spring ducklings are now adults, and I finally saw in awe, in the moving waters, the feeble and impermanent hieroglyphs. Before, in the scorching previous seasons, the waters were too shallow, with little movement, so the Creek was mute, voiceless and gasping. It seems the rushing winter waters gave the Creek a voice again, through the throbbing sounds and the visual water patterns. It’s alive!

The stone wall starts shaking.

I just stood there, hearing, seeing, and sensing all the movement and birds. I gently felt my body relaxing through the passing waters. My heart was cleansed of its tensions, griefs, and sorrows. The outer flow gently connects to the inner flow and back again, throbbing together. I don’t even have to ask, for the Creek gives me so much. In a natural and wild way, my body gives in, surrendering in synch with the winter gush, opening space and to a deeply emotional presence. This elusive moment allows deep tears, for I do not know how to tend these waters. I don’t know how to give back because of all my modern urban ignorance and severed mode of living. Oh, and how these waters tend me, even being an urbanized chuckled Creek, with all its domesticated shores and feeble water swirls — the rush just creeps under your skin and washes you. The Creek still tends to your soul, despite all that’s been violently removed from her watery being. A soaking ablution, just by allowing presence.

Crumbling walls, howling pain, mending Life.

My devotion is not enough, for I have no wisdom of how to take care of this Creek; I don’t know how to reciprocate with Life itself. I can never touch these waters, drink, or cook, and I cannot bathe in them. So, I offer my tears to the flow, even though the tiny salty droplets never reach the Creek’s murmuring body. And keep watching the birds around. Listening to their songs. And for the first time ever, I saw a tiny black fish swimming underwater! It’s alive!

With an open heart and eyes, I see the stones that stand in the dry Creek bed for nine months per year, now underwater. I now see them change and shape-shift, one like a turtle and another a tiny bear. They’re just moving and telling stories in the rolling motion.

I have no more words, just gratitude.

I am grateful for the hole in the wall that allows me to feel and fall into glimpses of a reciprocal and abundant Life.



Sofia Batalha

Journeying 🌿 between inner and outer landscapes, remembering ancient earth practices, radical presence, active listening, ecopsychology, art and writing.