The little yards and gardens of our bright attention…

Sitting together, we noticed how swiftly winter is coming to the garden. Behind the fence line almost all the trees are bare – only the ivy leaves are glossy and green among the twigs. The exception seems to be the big sycamore by the water tower, all its winged seeds gone, that hangs on to tattered leaves barely coloured by the wind and rain. The mahonia has flowered, holding its small stars of clearest yellow against the shadowed fence and the coming cold. In the tips of the branches this morning a little flock of goldfinches fluttered by, not stopping to fly down and feed, evidently on their way somewhere with settled, if slightly scatty, purpose.

I found it hard to settle this morning. There were restless gusts of broken rain, my mind full of odd, distractingly affecting thoughts and memories; but gradually the shifting edges of awareness began to allow a little light through from what is real, hidden by the patterned shadows of our daily lives.

What we see, and hear, and feel as we go about our usual tasks and habits is not illusion exactly, but it is entirely conditioned by the structure of our senses and all the accidents and qualities of our human minds. What is cannot be less than this; but despite the bathroom-glass distortion of our perceptions, what light does reach us is of God, and true. Were we only to be still enough, the Spirit, dove-like, would be at home in the little yards and gardens of our bright attention, and we should be free in love, among the tattered scraps of time that fall and drift in the holy, healing wind.

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