Monthly Archives: October 2013

Choosing to Look

The workman fixing the window plays his radio all day, and except for late afternoons when I hear country songs, Rush Limbaugh and his colleagues fill our yard with bitter ranting.

There are news organizations and politicians that would have us spend our days rehearsing anger.

Better, I think, to spend our days appreciating what we have. If I give more thought to John Boehner than my daughter today, I’m a fool. Let’s stay informed, but perhaps we should treat the news like a Northern lake on a winter day: a brief immersion suffices to remind of us of vast inhospitable depths.

Look at all that’s around us that might otherwise go overlooked.

Walking the dog today, I saw sumac leaves as red as coxcombs, bittersweet berries like golden beads draped on trees. By the spruce trees, a turkey vulture circled low, just above the treetops, sharing its shadow.

On days when there’s barely a breeze, you’ll still see children running through yards, determined to get their kites aloft. Their young spirits appreciate even the faintest brush of air.

As a Zen teacher would say: Just this. Just this.