We climbed into the woods together and searched for our own places far from all the words in the breeze. And so we took the less traveled forks and the less inviting trails and found one where we knew our own divide lay.

Later he said, chus I replied, and not another word was passed in my direction for a quarter day. Not another headnod eyegaze sidestep. I had no communication apart from the mosquito muse who repeatedly walked the length of my jacket. How interesting I thought that it would spend such a time of its short life with me today.

Clarity. What primal hunger, what peace did I feed while left to my thoughts and pen up on this rock, this other log, that warm alcove, the cavernous area where the drip drip drop of a once proud drained waterway prompted a brief lucid dream.

There was no purpose but to have no purpose, to sit still for hours with no human input and feel what that is. The balls I was juggling all came down and landed where they should. With no need to concentrate on keeping them afloat, I was free to — I was free to think about the art of juggling.

I wrote sixteen pages of thoughts spiraling from the surface of what’s happening in my life down to the blurred line that separates the social maladjustment of long periods of solitude. In the midst of it, I felt an enriching calmness and appreciation for my life, my position in it, and an extraordinary amount for my friends, especially that I had one with whom I could call the night before knowing that he’d enjoy this experience as well. Having felt all of these feelings, I wanted so much to share a periscope into my state of mind and invite others to indulge as well. Voila.

Say you did this and excused yourself for six hours. I think that this is a net positive because it allows you to deeply contemplate what certain events mean but also because it’s a state of mind that you can return to elsewhere. If you did this for two years though, you’d be maladjusted to society as your faculties for interaction would have changed so much. The neurons that govern those facilities would have had their connections wilt while others for deep thinking, focus, and hunting/fishing would be strengthened. Where is that blurred line? At what time frame is it before you go from benefit to worse off? And what is it like to flirt with the darkness there?