For Hilda

One kernel is felt in a hogshead; one drop of water helps to swell the ocean; a spark of fire helps to give light to the world.  – Hannah More

A Life of Moments - For Hilda

© 2006 Micky**, Flickr | CC-BY-SA | via Wylio

In front of the farmhouse, the forsythia has just begun to push out her yellow bows.  The roads here are sentried by maples just furling out their burgandy tendrils.  Spring is coming on, and I breath it in like oxygen, like quiet fire.

I find myself fascinated, anew, by the return to green here in Virginia.

I have learned to watch for when I am fascinated, angered, or sorrowful about something I see, hear, or experience.  When I feel this spark of emotion, I turn toward myself and watch. . . because here is something I value, something I need to ponder, something I need to understand more.

Like spring.

Like the board saved from the counter of a country store and hung by the new front door of a home.

Like the death of my beautiful friend yesterday.

The way I turn toward these things is in writing, in taking moments of the day to pull the experience into words so I can know it true.  For you, music may come or the rhythm of your shoes on a sidewalk or a rich cup of coffee on a porch at sunset.

I used to think that the extraordinary moments of life required a halt to all other things – a devotion of hours.  But instead, I have come to know that minutes matter more – a text of love, a sigh of sorrow, a pause, an instant to appreciate and remember.

Our culture wants us to believe that only the spectacular matters and even then we must hustle and act as if “life goes on” as it did yesterday, or last year, or even 30 seconds ago.  It does not.

Sometimes, life knocks us flat and all we can find to appreciate is that the earth did not let us fall forever.  Sometimes, we wake to rain and birds outside the window and forsythia just coming to life, and we give thanks for the moments of joy and sorrow in the day.  For the gift of blue flowers to remember and trees sparking red on our drive.

Life is lived in moments.  Hard, broken, beautiful moments.

What is sparking you today? Where do you find yourself wanting to linger?


I’ve been spending hours listening to Brene Brown’s amazing book Daring GreatlyAs I imagined, the book is profoundly shaping who I want to be in the world, or rather, it’s helping me remember who I want to be.  I highly recommend it