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July Taiko Talk

By: Allison Ballard


Sun. Sand. Water. Wind. Waves…

I sit on a beach at Lake Michigan.

I sit for hours, doing nothing in particular.

I stare at water so big it meets the horizon in one expansive curved line.

I position and re-position in awkward angles to catch the sun.

I brush at sand that clings and dries and grates against tender, sunburned skin.

I swat at flies. I shift my hat. Guzzle water. Turn my head.

This is the extent of my effort.

I am simply being.

Here and now.

Here comes a wave….and now it is gone.

There’s a shaft of light…and now it is gone.

A cloud… a breeze… a thought…

They ruffle by and rifle through and they are gone.

What lingers is the sense that I should be doing….something…

But if I sit here long enough, that too will be gone.

If I sit here long enough, the impulse to take action

will dissipate like the eroding beach.

I float in this new rhythm of nothingness

knowing that even my sitting is an act of doing.

Even as I sit, Fort Wayne Taiko moves forward.

In my absence, drummers are teaching classes,

performing at festivals,

learning repertoire,

assessing equipment,

expanding skills….

Seasoned drummers are assuming new leadership roles.

New drummers are learning to create their own energy and become their own anchors.

The next wave is gaining momentum.

Even as I sit.

I am not finished drumming.

Or teaching.

Or serving.

I am not finished demonstrating leadership

or holding vision

or strategizing next steps…

But today I simply sit.

Today, that is my offering.

I honor the foundation I have left in my wake by getting out of the way.

I yield to sun, sand, water, wind….

I resist the impulse to take action.

Today I simply sit and let the next wave move through.