Here, in the center of this calm, a scent rises, a leaf falls. The waters of time are sailing into tomorrow.
Soon this day will be but a dream, its emerald turned to gold, its stillness become a rush of wind and wings.
But now, tomorrow is the dream. Now the sleepy afternoons still linger and the willows sway beside the pond. I let its cool waters buoy me. Its colors feed my soul.
When night falls, the elders, having sensed the subtle shift in things, will search the sky for signs. Then they will sleep beneath a now of stars and moonlight and the waters of time will sail on.
Oh, July! Must you go so soon? You, with the lush, full summer in your arms? You, with long days full of sunlight and thunder? Must you go?
What carefree hours you gave us, painting the illusion that we, and you, would stretch on forever. We spent whole days of leisure celebrating your song.
And my, how the children loved you! How they played! You spent them completely, sending them home with faces caked with dust, their sleepy eyes gleaming and wanting more.
And we played, too, every chance we got, with all the loved ones we could gather around us. We stretched out on your beaches and lawns. We bathed in your oceans and rain. We watched your fireflies dance in the treetops like stars. We pretended we were young again, and those who were young believed they would be so always.
You etched fine memories on our hearts, July. You made the mad world stand still for a while and we believed all time was ours and that we would go on forever.
Change doesn’t happen all at once. It glides on the nanoseconds, sliding in beneath our notice one small, smooth motion at a time.
Oh, on some deep level we know. We are, of course, one with it and moving with it ourselves, each of us at our own pace, each according to his own rhythm, in a vast coordinated dance.
But we don’t attend to our depths. The surface, with its countless dazzling details, mesmerizes us. And so we wake one morning to discover that the infant has become a toddler, the boy has become a man, and sweet summer is quickly fading away.
“Nature often holds up a mirror so we can see more clearly the ongoing processes of growth, renewal, and transformation in our lives.” ~Anonymous
The thunderstorm roared through with a great fury, pouring sheets of rain so thick you couldn’t see across the yard. It was a masterful storm, driving out the oppressive heat, cleansing the air.
When it left, the whole sparkling landscape seemed to breathe with relief. The wilted flowers revived; the birds fluttered from branch to branch singing songs of rejuvenation. Children raced outside to splash in the puddles and squish the fresh mud between their bare toes.
Renewal is such a joyous thing, a proof of promises kept, of hopes fulfilled. The balance is restored; we’re brought back to who we are.
That’s good to remember when storms roar through. In the end, they come crowned by rainbows.
It’s not the big things that give life its juice. They spike and then quickly fade. But the simple pleasures, the day to day gifts, leave their traces forever.
They sing their notes into the memories of our hearts, and long after our minds have forgotten them, our hearts remember.
A sunrise, a breeze, an unexpected smile, the way the leaves turn just before the rain . . . Certain fragrances, freshly laundered sheets, warm socks on a chilly morning . . . New crayons, the texture of velvet, the way the sun dapples the grass in the late afternoon: the simple things.
Day by day, they add to the song, and when we sleep it sings itself to us that we may know that life is good, and that we are lucky and loved.
The little crownvetch blossom could have been overwhelmed at the amount of work to be done. Hundreds and hundreds of cells had to be fed and cared for, after all. Their timing had to be precise in order to open her petals. Everyone had to put on the right color and stand in the right place in line. But she didn’t give a thought to any of it.
Overwhelm wasn’t something she believed in. She was confounded when she heard how much energy the humans poured into it. But they were beings fond of great drama and that was just part of their play.
She, on the other hand, was a small roadside flower. And her part was simply to bloom in the sun, and to experience the bliss of it in her heart. She let the sun take care of the timing of things. She left the care and nurture of the cells to it, too, and to its partners, the earth and the rain.
It was the job of the cells themselves to find their right colors and places, and she wholly trusted them to do so.
And so she lived with a divine nonchalance, experiencing her life as a flower, floating on the deep, deep bliss of being exactly who she was meant to be.
In that beautiful, timeless place where hours run past unheeded, where you’re fully engaged in what needs to be done, and doing it well, life sings.
Some call it work; some call it play. They’re both the same when you’re there. You get in your rhythm, find your stride, and nothing exists but the doing. Hunger disappears, emotion vanishes, context becomes invisible.
All that exists is the doing–skilled, focused, as natural as breathing, and freeing you somehow, buoying you above all distractions.
It’s only afterwards you feel it, only when it’s over. And then the satisfaction rushes in, and the joy, and you know it’s what you live for.
It’s all a walk in the park, life. The rest’s a cloud made from the dust we kick up along the way, reflecting the sunlight and shadows.
The earth beneath your feet, the trees, the sky above are real enough. We all agree on that. It’s the stuff that’s up for grabs that’s make-believe.
Let it all go. When you rise above the dust, it all becomes clear–and infinitely beautiful.
It’s too hot to sleep; we may as well dance. In Australia the winter snow is falling and summer is only a dream.
So let us tango while we still may. Soon we shall be dreaming as well.
Now, while the buzz of the insects and the call of crows fill the afternoon air, in the haze of the day and the blaze of the sun, let us dance.
Let us shake the earth and wake the rain and thunder with our passion and our grace.
While the green still wraps around us, let us tango. Let us dance.
It didn’t matter to her that passersby might see her as one tiny spot of yellow on the hillside among thousands. In fact, it didn’t matter whether anyone noticed her at all.
She gave no thought to fame. She happily left that for the grand roses in the garden with their fragrant velvety petals.
Everyone, she knew, had a special purpose. Hers was to brighten the hillside and to feed the darling bees. It was, she thought, a splendid life.
She had no idea how beautiful she was. To her, everything was beautiful. She spent no time comparing one thing to another; she loved it all.
And so she lived her little life, a lovely jewel on the hill, feeding the bees, dancing in the breeze, shining her radiant light.