I want to write of gratitude of how this year hasn’t been so bad how there’s so much good that’s come out of the bad and how I’ve learned so much and grown and found my way clear to living in this moment but the darkness outside my window seems to linger and I feel myself falling into its cloying embrace hoping it might hold me just a little bit longer all the while hoping it will let me go find my way out of the darkness. And my shoulders slump and my body grows tired of waiting for the morning light. I lean back into my chair close my eyes and try to take a deep breath but it’s not very deep this morning breath filled with the weary and worry of these times that seem to grow heavier with every news report I read. And as I sit with eyes closed I hear my Auntie Maggie’s voice who at 90 lives alone in the city in southern India where she and my mother were born. She hasn’t been out of her house since March her only contact with ‘the outside world’ her two servants who come daily and a neighbour who visits regularly and her What’sApp calls where she sometimes laughs and sometimes cries and always sings me a song from her childhood when she and my mother and all their siblings lived together in what they called their own private Shangri-la. Your mama loved to sing, she says And I remember and hear her sweet voice singing her favourite Christmas song, “Il est né le divin enfant Jouez hautbois, résonnez musettes” And I smile and open my eyes and see that in those few moments while I sat with eyes closed and spirits flagging the sun has broken through the darkness and streaked the sky with rosy hues that glow and pulse across the horizon in undulating waves of violet and pink and tiffany blue and the trees are dressed in cloaks of rose-brushed gold and the river flows deep in the morning glory of dawn breaking free of night. I want to write of gratitude and find myself here in this moment falling breathlessly into the beauty of light bursting through the cracks. I want to write of gratitude but words escape me as I breathe into the grace that arrives with every breath when I let go of what I want of what I miss or regret or yearn for and let this prayer of two simple words be all that I can say. Thank You.
A Chinook arch hangs low in the sky above the city.
The temperature rises with the warmth of its breath caressing the air.
The sun hides behind the arch.
I sit at my desk listening to piano music softly playing in the background, my fingers resting lightly on the keyboard of my laptop. Thoughts skitter through my mind like the squirrels leaping from tree branch to tree branch outside my window. The warm winds have cajoled them out of their nests. They run across the snow. Play chase in the trees and bushes.
On the far side of the river, the water runs freely in a slim channel under that hugs the shoreline.
Outside my window, on this side of the river, there is only the stillness of ice stretching out from the river bank.
The river lies quiet in the morning. The ice clings to the cooler temperatures of night. Its surface is a glassy expanse of smooth ice and granulated snow blocks backed up against gravel bars that stretch out from the abutments beneath the bridge.
Morning has broken. Day has begun. I want to cling to the soft, cloying blanket of sleep. To remain cocooned beneath the covers, my body pressed up against my husband’s back.
Beaumont the Sheepadoodle has other ideas. Morning business calls. His wet nose pushes against my hand lying on top of the covers. He pulls me from my slumber, out into the coolness of the morning.
Day has begun. Morning has broken. The sky hangs low and grey. I stretch my body into the day. Welcome the softness of the air against my skin.
Morning has broken.
I greet the sacredness of this day with a whispered prayer of gratitude.
Morning has broken.
Here I am.
I am grateful to David Kanigan of Live & Learn who shared a verse from Rainer Maria Rilke, “Part Two XIV,” from Sonnets to Orpheus on his blog this morning. Rilke’s words caressed my mind, stirred my heart into morning reveries.