River Ruminations on 9/11

I arise at 3:30 AM to take my parents to the airport. While Labor Day signals the end of summer for many, the day they return is truly the end of summer for me...

It has been a summer of many blessings...So many blessings of love have come to me, in a shower of grace, that I have offered back to others...

I am home before 4:30 AM. I pause at the kitchen momentarily, and retrieve the beautiful pink rose a dear friend gave to my mother on her 80th birthday, and bring it up to my altar, where I sit in utter deliciousness until about 6 AM, meditating, and then giving thanks for the all the summer blessings received, and praying for all those who suffered a tragic loss on this day, eight years ago...

By 6:30 AM, I have seen a husband off to work, started a load of laundry, and have stepped into the river, with rain softly coming down, baptizing me, and cleansing my body and soul. I stay there, at the edge of the river for a while. It is too cloudy to actually witness a sunrise, but I know that somewhere, someone is truly beholding one. Still, I know the sun is shining, even behind the clouds...

I sit in my car by the river for an hour, reading from the book, Seven Sacred Pauses: Living Mindfully Through the Hours of the Day, by Macrina Wiederkehr, each quote and paragraph I read, more breathtaking than the other. I am moved very deeply to the core...

"Dawn breaks through night shadows. Fading darkness makes way for morning light. Golden rays exchange places with shining stars. All of nature leaps from the tomb of sleep and death. Everything stirs with renewed life. It is the hour of joy - a little resurrection. Rising from sleep, I raise high the chalice of my life. Dressed in robes of joyful anticipation, I enter this day with an open heart. This is the awakening hour. This is the hour of praise. "O medicine of dawn; O healing drink of morning!' Offering both words and silence, I join in the dance of creation. What will this day be like? Will I choose to walk through the hours mindfully? 'To affect the quality of the day is the highest of arts,' Henry David Thoreau tells us. And the mystical poet Jalaluddin Rumi reminds us, 'The breezes at dawn have secrets to tell you; don't go back to sleep..."

I get lost in the words, and the quotations, and soon an hour has passed, with me reading, by the river, with not a soul in sight...

I come home and do a little yoga mindfully, and then go for an hour walk in the rain, offering more prayers...

I return, and find I want to spend the day in silence, doing my chores, and going about my many tasks...What a blessing to be able to do so!

I share some quotes from my morning reading at dawn. More will come later...

"Set the clock of your heart for dawn's arrival.
Taste the joy of being awake."
~ Macrina Wiederkehr

"Joy is God in the marrow of our bones."
~ Eugenia Price

"I arise at dawn with a winged heart
and give thanks for another day of loving."
~ Kahlil Gibran

"The breezes at dawn have secrets to tell you;
don't go back to sleep."
~ Rumi

"Not knowing when the dawn will come
I open every door."
~ Emily Dickinson

"To God belongs the East and the West;
and wherever you turn,
there is the face of God."
~ The Qur'an, Surah 2

"God's hands are cupped around our becoming."
Ranier Maria Rilke

"I cannot cause light.
The most I can do
is to put myself
in the path of its beam."
~ Annie Dillard

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