Monday, January 18, 2010
To Look, To See
Ancient wisdom suggests we look at each day not as if it was our last, but with new eyes, as if every day was our first. Finding that thought compelling, I step out into the sunrise and am struck by the beauty and the mystery of everything around me. I leave my yard to walk along the edge of the pond in the growing light and watch the sun coat the ripples with silver. Last year’s dried oak leaves dance toward me in a sudden gust of wind. I look up and my eye is caught by the movement of small birds high over the pond, swallows perhaps. They are too far up for me to tell, but their joy is clear as they swoop and rise and sail out over the water and back, diving and skimming and soaring again and again. The sun touches the undersides of their wings so that they seem to float on feathers of pure light.
The wind swoops through the tops of the pines, rushing from one to the next, whispering green secrets. The boughs rise and fall as though breathing and I am caught up in the sound and the rhythmic dance of dark needles against blue sky. Then the wind is at my feet, whirling the loose snow into miniature cyclones before blowing off across the open fields, losing itself in the woods at meadow’s edge.
Later in the afternoon and into the evening as the light wanes and the day’s colors melt into darkness, I will walk again beside the pond, watching the water, different water now, new water, make its way to the falls. I will understand again that nothing lasts, though nothing appears to change, and tomorrow and tomorrow I will see again with new eyes the same ordinary things.