Thursday, November 1, 2012

Thankful, Day 1: Shiny

Billie Holiday. Oh she’s sad, but sometimes the mood fits. And somehow it fits, too, that light is streaming in my window at the same time. Cold, late-fall light streaming into a warm room looks different than summer or winter or spring light. Another day I might try to figure out why—do the bare tree branches and lack of green make a difference? Or the position of the earth in relation to the sun? Something about the atmosphere? Another day I might wonder about that more, but for today it is enough to know the light is different. It is welcome in this room.

Post tenebras lux—light after darkness—I just learned that phrase. Words I will tuck away to remember because they speak to me about so many things that in a way all come down to the same thing. Are you conscious of doing that—gathering into yourself words and phrases and sounds and images that speak for you and to you? It is especially helpful when you cannot speak those things yourself.

I’ve decided today is the day to make chutney. I’ve been looking forward to it for days—all the bits of color in four kinds of peppers and raisins and sugary bits of ginger, swimming in a bowl of golden vinegar. After much chopping there is a bowl in the microwave, and not soon exactly, but soon enough, the air in the house is heavy and sweet and spicy.

The sweet and the heat are both their own forms of light, I think. Different forms, but complimentary. And just like my cookbook promises, the chutney itself glistens when it is finished.

How good it is when your food glistens.

And suddenly it hits me: I’m like a crow or magpie, collecting shiny things for her nest. So be it. There are worse things to be hung up on. I am happy to keep collecting and lining, trusting there is always more.

Thank you Lord for things that shine, things that reflect the light.

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  1. I love the posts that you write when I can picture you in the quiet morning of your house. (While I try to block out the noisiness from my own this morning...)

    Please send me a little chutney.

    And isn't it lovely that some birds do look for shiny things for their nests? There's something there about the universality of beauty.

    "Post tenebras lux" - I'm writing it down.

    1. The quiet is good, but I'm glad for the noisiness when it descends, too.

      I was thinking while I made it that I should can the chutney, because as much as I love it, nobody else in my house will eat it. It needs to go to other people! I would love to send you some. Is there any way to do it without it spoiling that doesn't require science fiction?


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