I’m sitting on my back patio, facing the farmer’s field. I get to be in the shade in the early afternoon and my lawn sprinkler is waving its way across the lawn. All is well.
Tiny corns are starting their summer’s journey and the traffic on Belmont Road to my left is carrying souls to their destinations. Way in the distance, past the trees at the end of the field, Harrietsville Drive stretches left and right. My friend Barry’s barn pokes above the leaves. A weathered barn and a probably unused silo say hi off to the right. When I first moved in, verging on two years ago, I was disappointed that there were roads and traffic and buildings out back. Not any more. Now there are friends out there, some stationary and some moving, reminding me that we are part of a very large family.
And there are birds. When I got home from my long meditation retreat last December, I was also disappointed that the builder had planted deciduous trees every twenty metres or so along the back edge of our separate condo homes. “They’ll wreck my view.” How silly my brain can be. Those trees are now twelve feet high and love fluttering in the breeze. My view is still supreme. And there are birds sitting on the branches.
My two bird feeders are about two metres away from my loveseat, slightly to the left. As I tap away, a couple of brave souls hang off the sides, rooting out the seeds. Oops … now they’re gone. But how marvelous that they came to visit this up close human being. Sometimes the moments of bliss are so fleeting but I thank God that they happen.
I think I’ll pause the writing and see if any feathered ones return to their food.
Five minutes later. One male goldfinch (brilliant yellow!) sits on the tree beyond, sizing me up. Now he flutters to the feeder pole. Now he descends to the sunflower seed sanctuary. I worry that my tiny typing will scare him away – but no – he’s still there, craning his neck to get a better view of me. At least five other birdies are zooming around but so far he’s the only brave one. Pretty special to make a new friend from a distance of two metres. May I always be a benign human.
Three metres straight ahead, at the edge of my patio, sits an 18-inch statue of the Buddha. He’s in full lotus position, something I can’t do (but who cares?) and his hands touch. His eyes descend. Mr. Buddha is simply here, and now, and he’s silently cheering me on. Smart guy, Mr. Buddha, up there with Jesus in figuring out what leads to happiness. Right now he doesn’t have much to say. Just sitting will do fine.
A few minutes ago, I noticed two flutterbys in the grass – one large and grey, one itsy bitsy and white. But now they’re gone too. That’s all right. I trust they’ll be back, just like I trust moments of transcendence will return in their own sweet time.
Did I mention that all is well?