Holiness in the Moments

Christmas-a bird in the handI like what Anne Lamott says about discovering life anew. “There is ecstasy in paying attention… where you see in everything the essence of holiness, a sign that God is implicit in all of creation” (100). I think when we see the handiwork or hand print of God, it is easier to marvel. It is as if we have been graced by the deity of Almighty Goodness, Fairness and He who is Right, True and Holy.

The fan is whirling with rhythmic wordlessness, and humming, humming, humming with no inflection in tone or pitch. She invites the evening in with her lulling. My white dove, Christmas, is perched atop the lamp shade that cast its yellow glow on the underside of her plumage and belly. She appears ethereal. She is silent. No coos. Yet, from time to time a “plop” falls on the napkins at the lamp’s base. Behind my chair a Bichon relives the day in her dreams, and her involuntary muscle movement reveals the day’s terrors. She whimpers and winces before surrendering to an involuntary yelp.

A collar jingles and a snorting retriever (yes, snorting) announces her entrance into my office. The sun has set so streams of magenta grayed light break through the wooden blinds, outlining each leveled plank like a softly lit staircase. Another plop. The meconium colored stool saturates a corner of the white napkin a quarter’s diameter in width. A tinge of foul odor dispenses. Still, she perches quietly until a wing is stretched and the preening begins. Her beak feverishly digs and searches for the disheveled feather. Dainty talons scrap the silk lampshade which slightly interrupt the white noise of the humming fan. Crinkling silk scratches, and I am reminded of the crinoline underskirts I wore in middle school. Soft now, the fan hums still, and soft she settles again. The clock sounds and it is seven –the number of completion and perfection in the Bible.

I think Ms. Lammott would agree; the moments have been “holy.”
Anne Lamott – Bird by Bird: Some Instructions on Writing and Life – New York – Anchor Books – 1995

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