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The Light Of A Thousand Lacunae, Or, Saturday Morning at 8:11am

I love those moments when time seems to clear a space. The sound of my furnace brings it on. The sky is still overcast in the morning, everything else is quiet.

Doesn’t seem that I need to prepare, or clear away anything myself. A basket of laundry sits on the floor to my right, a bunch of clothes is still in the dryer from last night. The large cast iron skillet needs washing, as does my stovetop, dreadfully.

I have by no means finished Christmas shopping.

Comfort matters. The cushion behind my back is well-positioned, I’ve rested my feet on a Moroccan pouf at a nice angle, my ratty cotton zip-up sweatshirt keeps my neck warm. This all seems so quotidian but it matters.

I can hear my husband breathing.

I suppose it’s the joy of non-lonely solitude. The grace of paying attention to the time, patting each moment as it goes like a sleek cat passing. You can feel bones under the fur, linked, moving.

I know it’s silly, but I feel small ecstasy even in a sigh.

I never really understood all that stuff about nirvana, despite its popularity when I was a teen. But when time seems to breathe in, and lets me continue to breathe out, and in, and out again, words like hallelujah come to mind.

I know you guys are out there. I know you’ve all got lives, complex lives. It’s amazing to me that you read these words I type out in the morning. I imagine you at your tables, on the street, in the air, and I wish, I hope, if I were magic I’d make it true, that you get one moment of quiet and generous solitude. Today. Tomorrow.

They fade, these lacunae. That sense of glory, it passes and the crows start up and no one has washed the dirty pans. I don’t feel repaid for anxiety and grief and rages and drudgery. More like if I could just raise up a little higher, I’d see us all glowing in light that — here — only shows through pinpricks on a Saturday morning.

Have a wonderful weekend.

47 Responses

  1. Beautiful and eloquent, Lisa! I will have to watch for those moments. My brain seems to be always occupied with the laundry (I have a basket to fold, too), work, cooking and shopping, and helping my son through his senior year.

  2. Very beautiful post. I’m going to try to appreciate these moments as I recover from this horrible virus.

  3. Yes! Just lovely, and so in tune with what our yoga instructor suggested this morning if we wanted to “take our practice of the mat”: When we catch ourselves wanting more, wanting to do more, allowing discontent, she suggested taking a breath, slowing down, and being grateful for what we have, specifically, in the moment. Moving from there to contentment. Sounds simple, or even simplistic, but if it could only become a habit. . . Happy Saturday! Thank you!

    1. Just back to say I’m still thinking of how you’ve stretched my understanding of lacunae which I generally imagine as lacking, as gaps, as dark, I guess, rather than light. Reframing in progress. . .

    2. @Frances/Materfamilias, I’ve recently taken yoga back up and it is really helping me find more of this. And lacunae, the word came to me, but I wasn’t sure it was apt, so I looked it up. It’s the musical meaning that’s closest to what I was looking for. When you just heard something, the sound is still vibrating, and what is about to happen is somehow happening in the pause in advance. Time slip, in a sense.

  4. Lovely words, thank you. I am working on finding the joy in the everyday and quietening my thoughts so your words resonate with me as they often do. How this can be so, when we are in different hemispheres enjoying different seasons, is wonderful.

    1. @Maria, This made me pause, and think. Yes, that our lives are so entwined with the seasons and yet happen so much on another calendar altogether.

  5. Wise men know the art of being takes a lifetime to perfect. As I age and slow down I find just being is more than enough to please me to my very core.

  6. Lovely! And so perfectly capturing that quiet joy that I am often most in tune to in the mornings, but which is really there, just waiting for us to slow down and allow ourselves to breath, deeply and slowly.

  7. Thanks for this Lisa. I’m sitting reading your post, as my own furnace kicks on, with my own husband, uncharacteristically, still sleeping…guess I’m in my own little Sunday morning lacuna. New word for me. Love the cat image. Beautifully written, btw.

  8. I have been so busy doing the sort of community activism that involves long stretches of listening to idiots. I have had to go to number of parties…not my thing. I needed to read this! It really helps!

  9. How beautifully written. The magic is, indeed, in those “in between” moments . . . and our senses are usually too dulled or overstimulated to notice. By taking these moments we can possibly find the holy in the mundane. Thank you!

  10. Every time I come back to read this post, I’m lost for what I want to say in reply, but I am at peace. I’m ok with that.

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