I believe in the pure, unforgiving power of the flight of the arrow. SsssssThwack!   That is that sweet sound an arrow makes when it leaves a finely tuned, precision machined, accumulation of metal and synthetic fibers, gives it’s will over to physics, and finds its destiny.  I am the god of this world.  I control its destiny.  I am the omnipotent master of the demands placed on the flight of the arrow.  I can command it to kill, or command it to pursue the elusive “X”.  I decide when the journey to perfection will begin, and when it will end.  

To my delight and consternation, I have discovered that I am not the all powerful god I thought I was.  I have allowed the flight of the arrow to have power over me.  It can fill my heart and break my heart, ease my mind and drive me insane, and it does it all simultaneously.  It is a refuge I seek when the storms of life rage, and it is a tangled web of impossible challenges I am compelled to explore. The power of the flight of the arrow over my life does not reside in the successful passage to its own destiny, but in the journeys and revelations it has given me as I try to lord over it.  

The journey inside one’s self is one you don’t take lightly or often enough.  There are some things along the way I don’t want to see, and so I tend to avoid going on that trip.  The arrow demands that I take that one way passage, and I know my self better because the truth of the arrow points out my weaknesses and strengths. Flaws in preparation, intellect, concentration, emotional control, self awareness, and ethics are revealed with each shot.  Each time I draw back the bow I embark on an inward expedition designed to reveal more truth, and build up those areas discovered to be deficient the last time I bumped and bruised myself against the walls of ego and perfection.

The flight of the arrow demands mastering the physics and physiology of the shot.  I take my own fantastic voyage into the bones, ligaments and muscles of my body to ascertain whether a shot hits its mark or maims.  I can see my own heartbeat pulse through the arrow as it awaits its launch at full draw. I delight in the transformations of chemical, heat, kinetic and potential energies, as the violent machine is controlled then loosed.  My engineer’s mind revels in a world filled with permutations of deflection, angular acceleration, torque, axle to axle, brace height, tiller, cams, idlers, spine, draw length, and aerodynamics, knowing that there is a perfect synergy between arrow, bow, and archer out there somewhere. The arrow relentlessly reveals my proximity to that nebulous target.

Finally, when the arrow is called upon to fulfill its original destiny – killing – it reveals its ultimate power in my life by taking me closer to my God.  The arrow is my companion as I stealthily share my tree with a falcon, and together we see, feel, and hear nature come alive at daybreak.  The arrow allows me to witness a host of God’s creatures go about their life unaware of my intrusion into their world, and then once discovered, reach an unspoken truce with a skunk only a couple of feet away.  The bow is the only thing that seems out of place as I sit camouflaged, hugged by the roots of a 100 year old oak tree, and in tandem with God, resolve all the problems in my small world, and find my place in His.