Have you ever been out walking in the golden evening when the world is soft and quiet and the honey sun coats everything?
Have you ever seen the brown and dull things glow around the edges, gilded by the light, or a sullen cloud with a silver lining and just… it just looked beautiful, even if it was the saddest looking thing the last time you passed by? Sometimes the light makes flowers on the trees where nothing exists but brown buds, shining and illuminated with warmth.
What I am asking is, have you ever seen the sun transfigure ordinary things into something glorious?
I have seen it happen. And I know, whatever happens, I cannot quite give up hope…
We are people of the light. We yearn for it, no matter how beautiful storms and stars may be. The sunshine just shines in us in a way that clouds cannot do. There is something about the light that transforms us.
The Light transforms us; transforms everything. Even a normal life. Even me. You see? It makes you see beyond the brown deadness around you and it fills the brokenness with light. Anything is glorious when the Son shines through it.
We long for the light. It is here. Do you see it?
That is why I write poems, you know. Because I caught a glimpse of the sun shining through it; I caught a glimpse of the soul in the body of dust.
The photographs I take, the words I write, the paintings I make – I hope the Son shines through them, just a little bit, and changes everything.
Not change in the way we wish, perhaps, for a weed is still a weed and it makes me sad to see a wasteland, no matter if the day is pleasant or stormy. But you can only see shadows when there’s sun on the other side, you know. The gray, flat days harm you more than the highs and lows do, sometimes, where nothing hurts and nothing thrills. Don’t take the glory away with the tears.
But you know this is all very well for a confusing sort of a blog post with pictures of flowers, but life is not usually a poem, if I haven’t noticed. I know. I’ve noticed.
My friend, poetry is not ignoring the brokenness. It is seeing beyond it. How can you live if you do not see beyond the brokenness? How could we breathe if not for those stories of singing on the balconies and talking outside the nursing home window? But… ah, I can’t explain it all that well, sometimes. You could see it if I had the words that don’t exist yet.
Anyway, I suppose I just wanted to let you know the reason that I smile, and what’s more, a reason that holds even when I don’t (which is often). This is why I have hope in the hopelessness. I am not ignoring the pain. I feel it more deeply than you know, I guess, but I can laugh through my tears because there is more – oh, so much more. I only wish I saw it always.
The times when you do see beyond, when there is something on the other side of the wasteland, when there is, even, someone walking beside you right through it, it doesn’t hurt quite so much. No matter how long we have toiled, no pain seems quite unendurable when we know we are near the end. When we know there is an end. There is an end, dear. And beyond it, light. Or darkness, if you walk straight into your own shadow and do not turn to see the sun at your back.
This may seem strange, but it is true: I am glad for this valley if for no other reason than, for a moment, at least, it will make us all see beyond.
When, at last, we are free again… I think, for a moment, the whole world will be a poem. A hug will be a symphony. A conversation will be life. The squealing microphone won’t matter when you can be there, you can sing into it, you can gather, you are free. All the normal things will be sacred and breathtaking for just a few days, perhaps, because we have been on the other side.
Right now, we are all seeing beyond in our dreams. When it’s real, when we finally burst into the light again, we will drink it in hungrily and it will be as sweet as honey.
Wouldn’t it be nice if we could always see that way?
These days and all days, let us see beyond. Find the glory in the pain, but do not ignore the pain. It is real. It hurts. But it is not all. If there is no more, if there is no resurrection, if the world is winter always and spring does not come again, there is nothing. This world would be a sad, sad place if we only inherited what we could see in the cloudy days. But we don’t. You know the sun is still there beyond the clouds, don’t you? There is more, dear; there is hope.
There is so much hope in the world when you can look right through it and glimpse Heaven on the other side.