Often they are small. And then other times they are wonderful and large, looming truths about life. They hover like ebony rain-packed summer clouds in the afternoon. Or they float by like seeds blown from a spent dandelion. They are coming and going. A constant force to be reckoned with. They are hatchlings and seedlings and fledglings of this life.
Birthed in unexpected places and moments, they appear. And I am called to be vigilant and at peace. A combination of human emotion that allows tender and tough to co-exist. Tender enough to capture the magnificence. And tough enough to know that in the netting, there will be objects that must be released. It is not all glory and it is not all beauty. But seeking the lovely, the grace-filled and the glorious requires casting the net into the life seas.
In a state of watchful child-like wonder I can live this season of my life in a state of re-born newness. Like a bivalve cracks open and lets the water flow in and out, receiving and releasing. Keeping the nutrients, releasing the sediments. I am called to continually take in the discoveries of my life. I would starve on a diet of bland, if I never crack open the door to wonder. I would miss the shades of blue on the hydranga that go to purple, lavender and aqua. And the hidden greens waiting to decide which color to be.
We would never know the way rain feels, dropping from a summer storm on warm tanned flesh if we remain cocooned in dry places. One more day reveals one more smell or taste, never before experienced.
And words of an eighteen year old child who want to tell their story get tangled in my net. I can choose. I choose to listen and realize there is more than the words unfurling from the man/child lips. There is a heart of curiosity and trust. There is his own discovery needing a place to land and light.
In a moment or two, a child will awake from her warm quilted bed in an air-conditioned room and tell me of her ten day mission trip. She has gone away and seen poverty and a world outside of her own. She and her passport are back. And there are stories to gently receive.
A parent lives a layered life of discovery. Because she holds the key to seeing through a child’s glistening eyes. Her own, the ones who look to her and call her momma. And it magnifies the wonder. For at once she is receiving discovery through her own glassy portals and stooping down to see through the eyes of those she is raising.
If I see with open wonder and a seeking heart, will I show my children how even in my fifty-fourth year of life, the beauty never ends. The unveiling never stops. And his Kingdom is filled with marvelous intricate designs. That art is living, breathing, waiting, hoping, pulsing all around.
And I am in this middle place. I see through the eyes of my aging mother too. The joys rebounding in her life. The strange and child-like discovery that is hers as she moves through her days. She forgets and then she remembers. And if I can learn to refine a listening heart, I will hear the most intricate details of a woman, a mother and another poet’s life.
Around every corner is a discovery. I will raise my net.
And bend into a low and listening stance, ever vigilant, ever watchful. Filled with the ready knowing that something is waiting. And that something is beautiful.
I will round the corner at a slow and steady gait. One that expects to not miss a single fleck floating in the sun-soaked or moon-drenched air.
Joining Jennifer and Emily