We spent this day much as
we spend them all. We dreamed
our dreams, attended to our tasks
and needs, and, if we were lucky,
laughed, loved, served, and expressed
a measure of kindness and compassion.
And now, as the day’s final hours close,
the sky sings its Amen, to bless us,
to raise us above our ordinary hours,
to assure us that, regardless
of what we did or failed to do,
all is well, and we are loved.
Don’t forget to laugh.
Look, even Nature has her sense of whimsy,
flowers wearing lavender clown hair
for instance, just for the delight of bees.
And the bees themselves, of course,
built so they shouldn’t even be able
to fly, but bumbling anyway.
The scratching of chickens, the honks
of geese, the poses of the cat.
Oh yes. We have silliness here
by the bucketsful, just for our delight.
And because we all look so grand
with our mouths full wide with smiles.
When you consider the vastness
of it all—the nebulae and galaxies
flung across the deep and infinite sky,
even the towering of mountains
and clouds—and then turn
your gaze on the intricate details
in the center of a tiny flower,
of the swirled fingerprints
of a baby’s hands, and then think
how even those dwarf the particles
of which they’re made, and then
consider that you are, somehow,
capable, in your shadowy way,
of comprehending it all,
how can you not be suspended
in wonder at the mystery and beauty
of the Yes and its song!
The green dream of summer
envelopes us now, its radiance
penetrating our cells, filling
our lungs, swimming through
our veins. This sun-born gift,
this carrier of life, sustains us,
feeding us with the song of Yes,
refreshing us with its liquid grace.
It is enough. It is all we need.
My eyes gather flowers
as if this will be my last sight
of them. I cannot get enough.
Already, along the roadsides, chicory
waltzes with Queen Anne’s lace.
If I blink, goldenrod will fill
the fields. This seeming speed
of passing seasons is not due,
I think, to my advancing years alone.
Events beyond the flowers hurtle
toward the long winter, too.
I gather precious blossoms,
feeding my soul with them.
When the season of darkness
finally falls, I will be telling
the story that begins with
once upon a time
there were flowers.
Sometime early last spring, someone
pushed a fingertip of earth aside,
took a flat little seed from her hand,
and placed it in the indentation.
She covered it with the same dirt
that her finger had displaced,
gave it a loving little pat, a smile,
and a little drink of water.
That’s all. One little act of faith,
of hope, of trust. Weeks passed.
A green sprout pushed through
the shell of the seed, through
the soil, reaching for the light,
and finding it, reached higher,
and multiplied a thousand cells
to make leaves, and more thousands
to make a bud that opened
into a beautiful flower whose
bright petals radiated their joy
and sang Thank You! Thank You!
The creek is nearly dry now,
the rocks that make up its bed
exposed. Feeling the dry air
against their surfaces they remember
the high places from which they fell
ages ago, and before that, the eons
they spent inside the earth’s womb
until the thunderous tumult that pushed
them upward through its crust until
they reached the sky. They recall
the way that trees grew between them,
winding their great roots in a living caress,
freeing them, one by one, to tumble
downward, to begin their long journey
If today is your birthday, I sing you
and all you have become. I celebrate
the ins and outs of you, the story
that’s uniquely yours and beautiful,
and the way that you tell it,
with all its lines and ruffles,
to the world. I celebrate that one
such as you could have come along,
a gift to us, wearing the fragrance
of laughter and grace, shining
your glorious colors to lift us
and bring us joy.
I found myself in the city today
and decided to stroll some neighborhoods
to see what I could see. From a block away
the colors caught my eye, so many, so large,
so shining in the sun. What are earth?
I wondered, having seen nothing
like it before. I laughed, yes, out loud,
to discover that some folks can keep
Christmas rolling right on into mid-July.
Every measure of the song is balanced.
The rise is followed by a fall, the rushing
met with calm, the barren opening
to fullness. Every note has its meaning
and place and is essential. Even us.
Even when it seems we are wholly
out of tune and devoid of any sense
of harmony. In the end, it all works out
and is splendid and glorious
beyond our knowing. Breathe, then,
and be at peace.