Regaining Perspective

Today I had a hard time waking up, wanting to get up and face the day.

Today I gave in to a faithful dog gently nudging my arm,

As she waited patiently for me to stir and acknowledge her concern and need.

Today I went through the motions of talking with a friend

Finding it hard to be satisfied with long-distance communications,

yearning for something real and more tangible;

Acknowledging the challenge to trust and honor with hundreds of miles between the

“I know, I care, I’m confused at times too,

And I’d rather be there, but responsibilities for now are where I am.”

Be still. Look again. We are not alone.

 

Today I visited a stranger before leaving as new friends.

Her skin was frail, her mobility less than the youthful pictures of her on a shelf

Sustaining memories of celebrations with loved ones.

She had lived all over the world, but now found herself in a place she didn’t prefer.

She was of sound mind, but could no longer hear the birds outside her window

As she recounted the delight of watching a beautiful cardinal build its nests,

Only to lament over the injustice of predators destroying its sanctuary.

She had decided not to watch television news because it was “all bad news”,

But in her heart she knew the prey and predator dynamic all too well

from what she’d observed just outside her window without the filter of curtains.

She chose now to think about the wonders of discovery,

reading and looking at pictures in countless magazines and books nestled about her,

And she seemed to have earned the right to say:

“They ought to just leave the moon and other planets alone…….

We need to clean up our own mess here instead of making a bigger one out there.”

And I wonder:

Does it take 90 something years for us to verbalize thoughts

without worrying about what others might think or say in response?

Be still. Look again. We are not alone.

 

This evening I walked two dark-furred, panting pups,

As other silhouettes shadowed our own

trying to circumvent the oppressive heat and humidity of what reptiles tolerate

at the bottom of muddy swamps and abandoned drainage ditches,

As if to mock the “rise and shine” mantra of the “Sunshine State”.

Be still. Take a nap. We are not alone.

 

As the sun threw up jaw-dropping hues of pink and magenta,

retiring with a gaping yawn on the western horizon,

A lone dove perched on a water-retention fence,

While dragonflies darted and whirred between branches arcing over its head.

A lone woman on a nearby bench sat motionless, watching the unadulterated sunset.

I walked softly, redirecting my dogs, respecting her focus.

Be still. Look again. We are not alone.

 

Tonight, I am tired—unsure what a day will bring forth, tomorrow or beyond.

Tonight, I will sleep deeply, and Lord willing, wake with the morning light,

faithful companions by my side,

(and maybe even a suitable job prospect that doesn’t compromise too much of what  I prefer to be about and who I prefer to be….rather than hot and bothered.)

You may lean on me, as I lean on other’s shoulders at times.

Embrace me, as I try to embrace what I struggle to understand, too.

But please do not lean too hard or embrace me for too long.

I am reminded:

Be still.  Be sad.  Be joyful.  Be what God made you uniquely to be.

And look, once more, but know:

We are not alone.

 

And someday, the lone dove will fly from its unyielding metal perch to join dragonflies

feeling their strength in the wash of a vibrant summer sunset, until the Light returns.

We are not alone.

Dove looking away

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