It is early morning. I cannot sleep.
I wander into the living room. Turn on my desk lamp. Light the candle I light every morning.
Beaumont, the Sheepadoodle, raises his head from where he is asleep on the chaise beside my desk. I give him a pat. He lowers his head and closes his eyes.
I leave my desk where it sits in front of the window looking out over the river. I walk around the island, into the kitchen area. Turn on the cappuccino machine. Fill the receptacle with water.
I pull out the coffee grinder from the drawer beneath the window at the far end of the kitchen. It looks out onto our front doorstep. It is dark out there. No view of a streetlight shimmering on the river’s surface. No flash of a car’s lights crossing the bridge.
I pull out the jar of coffee beans. The grinder. I place them on the counter, measure out the beans and press down on the lid. The noise of the grinder startles Beau. He lifts his head. He watches me. Slowly rises off the chaise. Stretches and comes to stand beside me in the kitchen. I scratch behind one of his ears. He leans against my leg.
I ask if he wants to go out. He cocks his head to one side.
I move to the front door. Gather his leash which lays on top of the wicker basket that holds his towel, ball, and other doggy paraphernalia.
I throw a coat on over my pyjamas. Exchange my slippers for slip-on boots and head outside.
Beaumont hesitates for a moment on the top step. He stretches his head towards the river. Listening.
I listen with him.
In the quiet, I hear the river flowing, its gurgling sounds a welcome whisper in the dark.
On a strip of gravel that I cannot see but know lies in the river’s path, geese honk in the pre-dawn dark.
I wonder if they can find their way when there is no light.
We move off the stairs towards the road at the end of the walk. I stand in the crisp, cool air of morning not yet broken. Beau sniffs and snuffles in the frost-covered grass.
Morning has not yet awoken. Darkness rests easy in my corner of the world.
I have not read the news today. Have not yet scrolled through interminable accounts of the rising number of cases and deaths, of losses and grief. Of what’s happening where. Of measures taken. Steps missed. Decisions made. Changes unfolding.
I have not yet opened myself up to the tug of despair. The tears I am afraid to unleash for fear they will not stop. The wish I could do more, do anything to stop the infiltration of this virus infecting the world. To do something to ease the fear and panic. To soothe a troubled soul.
I am not ready to face the day filled with facts and stories of a virus taking the world hostage. There will be time enough for reality to rise up and stun me with the shrill cry of its presence.
For now, I breathe into the gentle awakening of dawn’s light pushing back against the dark.
In the stillness of the morning, I stretch my arms above my head and welcome in the light creeping into the night.
We are billions of little rowboats struggling to find our way, together, through these uncharted waters.
We are billions of voices and stories, eyes and hands, hearts and feet pounding a path to a better tomorrow. Together.
May we all find the courage to row as One.
And I dip my oar into the waters and begin to row.
And the waters part and I find myself moving with the water’s flow as the sun breaks across the distant horizon.
Light pushes back the dark and turns the sky rose and gold and blue.
I dip my oar into the river and am reminded that it is love that connects us. Love that supports us. Love that leads the way.
Let us row together. Let us Let Love Lead.
Thank you Miriam of My Window for the inspiration for Let Love Lead. (Sometimes, the words flow first. Sometimes, the painting.)
At all times, Love Flows. Love leads.
Painting will follow. ❤