Friday, May 18, 2007

Just breathe

The greens are brilliant this morning and the sky a perfect Colorado blue. Sunshine lightens everything and shows up the rain-washed clean, warming the lilacs and spreading their scent everywhere while the breeze wafts it through the open windows. It's cold but not a sharp, bitter cold, rather a blunt-edged cold that hints at the warmth to come.

Time moves so quickly, the soft yellow-greens swelling to the brilliant growing green that will soon darken in the sun to a deep verdant green like sun-dappled pools where light is a stray fiery diamond shaft softened by its passage through the heavy canopy of the forest. This is one of my favorite times of year, when the air is soft and fragrant with new growth before the blaze of the relentless summer sun sears away the fragrance of earth and bursting seeds and spring petals that emerges only when rain releases what hides from the sun's brazen glare.

A few months after I moved here, I got caught in the rain. As I passed a towering full-figured pine in the middle of a parking lot, I caught the scent of spicy green. I stood and just breathed, surprised and pleased. As the sun burned away the clouds, the scent faded, going back into hiding until the rain would bring it out again.

There are moments like those, surprising moments when a sound or a scent or a flash of color, movement or light, remind me what a wonderful life I have. Some days, when the work seems endless and I've been hard at it until my eyes burn and a sharp pain bores relentlessly into my head, I'll catch a glimpse of a bird with scarlet feathers warbling on a branch in the squirrel porn tree in front of my desk or see the tarball twins--most likely the offspring of the female black squirrel that disappeared last fall--tumbling and carousing along slender branches or see birds and squirrels dining together at the now open all you can eat gutter buffet next door, and I am reminded there is something in life other than work . This is one of those days, a gift that makes me want to just breathe and enjoy the flowering wealth of earth, air and sky before I turn back to the necessity of work.

It isn't as though the days aren't full of these moments--every moment holds the same promise--but rather that I get so wrapped up in what I must do that I forget to pause and just breathe. I need these reminders and I'm glad they land in my trees or whisper through the open windows to catch my attention. Those moments are my little vacations, moments that make it easier to survive the seemingly endless working hours and just breathe.

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