Monday, December 07, 2015

Morning Report From My Western Window

There is a window in my bedroom wall that faces west through which, when I am inside looking out, I can see the rise of a mountain, its flanks like bits of blue paint splashed between the trees that grow close to the house. At this time of year, late autumn, the ground is papered brown with fallen leaves and every branch and twig is gilded by the early morning sunlight. Through bare branches I can even glimpse the pond across the road where geese are gathering by the hundreds to plan their journey south. A gray squirrel scampers in the leaves, a cardinal flaunts its jeweled feathers, a chickadee pipes a morning tune. All that I see is natural – birds, water, trees, mountain, sky. I’ve made none of these, own none of them. They frame my day, I move among them. They are what’s outside that window. They don’t come in.

Ah, but I can go out. I can gaze into my house from the other side of that window and see what the trees, the squirrel, the birds might see if they cared to look in. Should it be a surprise that the first thing I notice in that window is me, looking back at me? There I stand, reflected, surrounded by sunlit trunks, gazing into my own eyes. Only when I change my focus can I see the room I’ve left, the walls beyond reflection, the window in the east wall, my computer where I’ll record all this, the wall of book-crowded shelves, the ceramic turkey I’ve forgotten to replace with something more Christmasy. I notice that from the outside my window looks dark, the result of all that’s reflected in the glass while from the inside, the window looks quite clear and bright. I can see out far better than I can see in, but when I step close to the window and shade my eyes with my hands there is my room, my things, what I’ve made and what I own, what I am, really, reflected in things.


Barb said...

Pauline, this writing gave me a chill of recognition - what we see when we look out, but the necessity of looking closely to also see what's within. I like that reflected photo of you. A good piece of writing to start my day!

Out on the prairie said...

Very nice, a reflection of your life.

Friko said...

Two worlds in one. One has you in it, the other is observed by you.
Would both worlds exist if there were no you?

I love this post, but then, I love all of your posts.

Wisewebwoman said...

I so love your writing, you awaken my spirit when life is bleak. Outside-inside-eternal reflections.

Thank you.


Kerry said...

Lovely, Pauline. There is outside world, but I think you have incorporated it into yourself so beautifully.

Pauline said...

Thanks, Barb. I wonder sometimes at my own thinking. It's nice to have validation.

OOTP - succinctly put!

Friko - not my worlds certainly, but someone's!

WWW - what a nice thing to say, and what a good thing to be able to do.

Kerry - I drink in the outside every day :)

Hilary said...

A lovely post with beautiful you. Your thoughts remind me of the Ansel Adams quote "There are always two people in every picture: the photographer and the viewer."

Gary said...

Wow, You always make me think a little deeper, appreciate a little more. Visiting your blog and stepping into your words always seems to calm and quiet me. Do you feel that peace?

On a side (yet related) note, once I looked outside my window on a dark night and saw my own reflection. I was young and wasn't expecting it so it made me scream. I am glad you are less dramatic than that. :)

Pauline said...

Hilary, you've understood completely :)

Gary, what kind words. Yes, I am that peaceful, especially here at this place and now, at this age. I remember feeling this way as a young child but with much more fervor then. I felt I was an active participant. Now I feel I am more the observer, participating but much more quietly.