Saturday, December 17, 2005

Morning Has Broken

Bands of light stream across my desk. The early morning hours are nearly my favorite time. My soul is warmed and nourished when touched with the freshness of the day. Turning to look out the window, I watch an artistic breeze paint cloud patterns across the sky. Lingering to enjoy the moist air touching my cheeks, I revel in the freshness of the morning after the passing storm. The morning songs of the birds filling the loft and the soft breezes drifting into the room bring to mind one of my favorite songs:

Morning has broken,
Like the first morning,
Blackbird has spoken
Like the first bird;
Praise for the singing,
Praise for the morning,
Praise for them springing
Fresh from the Word.

Sweet the rain's new fall,
Sunlit from heaven,
Like the first dewfall
On the first grass;
Praise for the sweetness,
Of the wet garden,
Sprung in completeness
Where his feet pass.

Mine is the sunlight,
Mine is the morning,
Born of the one light
Eden saw play;
Praise with elation,
Praise every morning,
God's re-creation
Of the new day.
by Eleanor Farjeon (1881-1965)

As I looked out, contemplating the new day, a sharp, distinctive tapping reached my ears. Searching the woods, I could see nothing that accounted for the sound. Moving to a window at the other end of my loft retreat, I searched again. It seemed that the sound was coming from a large stump at the edge of our yard.

The stump is the remains of an ancient, scarred yet beautiful white pine that dominated the corner of the clearing when we moved in here; a tree that represented resilience, determination and stability. During a storm early this year the ancient tree succumbed to the battering winds when one swift, powerful blast bought it crashing to the ground. Now the stump provides a pantry –and sometimes boarding house - for nuthatches, woodpeckers and small creatures. Well, I have digressed….

Listening carefully to the sounds of tapping, I concluded they were coming from the old stump. Grabbing my binoculars, I began searching for the source of the sound. On silent wings a dark form landed on the side of the trunk. I grabbed for my camera, delighted to see not one but two pileated woodpeckers. They continued to work up and down the stump for nearly an hour. Each member of the family was privileged to have a close view of the birds. We hear the birds most days but are not always granted the opportunity to enjoy watching them at their work.


Blogger Fran said...

What a beautiful post--I'm working this week on mindfulness (Christmas prep had me a little frazzled) and this post is definitely in the moment. I'm cleaning up my Yahoo mailbox this morning and ran across your kind words regarding Sacred Ordinary. I'm adding you to my blogroll.

Looks like you live in a very beautiful part of the world. More another time.

12:43 PM  

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