Getting to Nothing

Yoga, meditation, and walking a labyrinth have helped me slow down. Taking pictures on travels and at events revealed to me a love of landscapes, water, and serene settings. With the time I save disengaging from over-commitments and retiring my crown as a royal multi-tasker, I find local serene spots, hang out and do nothing.


The Art of Doing Nothing

A charming book titled The Art of Doing Nothing by Veronique Vienne captivated me because of its elegant design, brevity, and beautiful sepia photos. And then there was her meandering but clearcut writing. Topics are categorized as Arts: the art of procrastinating, the art of napping, bathing, breathing, yawning. And lounging. That was the one.

Lounging. It evokes chaise lounges- with languorous females supine, wearing nothing but a Mona Lisa smile. Lounging- in the hammock in my beloved Miller Place with the metal hooks that squeaked rhythmically as I got a small sway going and then just rocked. Sigh. Or in the Adirondacks’ hammock hung between two oak trees. Lounging on the grass staring at clouds. Breathe.

Each of my lounge visions includes no words, no thoughts. Just lounging, my muscles slack, my bones almost melting onto the surface that welcomes them.

Rising up from lounging, (because you have to get close the to the surface of the earth or lower than your solar plexus height when you lounge, so says Mme Vienne), and it makes sense, my breathing is slower, calmer; those cricks in my neck and knees are gone.

Fairly soon after lounging, an idea can be crystallized; a troubling situation is not so troubling or even no longer a “situation.” Like the baby doves out back that rested in their nest for two weeks to get their little feathers smoothed out, I’m smoothed out. And it takes a lot less than two weeks.

Favorite Lounge Spots

Where do you lounge?

Ethel Lee-Miller blogs regularly about people, the power of words, and the writing life. She’s retired from professional writing gigs after 30 years of teaching, coaching, editing, and gathering writers to publicly share their work. She is the author of Thinking of Miller Place, and Seedlings, Stories of Relationships. In retirement she’s writing to inspire, to connect with folks, and for the pure enjoyment of it, and sharing stories at Odyssey Storytelling Tucson Tellers of Tales, and anywhere there’s a Zoom mic.