© Another Day in the Country
These days, I’m often awake before dawn, not by choice. It’s the fault of my body clock, which takes longer to reset itself than it used to, when daylight saving time goes in or out of place.
There are many people up before dawn, regularly, so it seems. At least one man is up before dawn this morning. I recognize the sound of this truck. This morning as I lay snug in my bed, watching the play of his headlights past by window, it dawned on me, that I could imagine him happy, content, at peace, and bless him on his way. One day, it will dawn on him that revenge is useless and burns the soul that holds it close — maybe today’s the day.
Dawn signals a change in the air. Dawn is such a magical occurrence. Ready or not, it comes. You might have had a sleepless night and you crave a little more darkness before you face the day; but dawn is on its way. You can bet on it!
Dawn creeps into your awareness like a hunch, softly, gradually, making itself known. Was it the street light that made me stir? No, it’s been on all night. It wasn’t my Christmas lights. They went off at midnight. Was it a car’s headlights turning the corner?
I turn in bed to face the window. It’s dawn softening the contours of the room. As if through a haze I see the outline of the chair, my clothes thrown haphazard on the arm like yesterdays obligations hidden by the darkness of night, only for a time. Now, the plant in the corner takes shape as the light increases and I can begin to see individual leaves.
It isn’t here yet, dawn. The sun is still not visible, the glow at the edge of my world not tangible. I can close my eyes, choose not to see; but dawn walks in on silent, cat paw feet, like a new thought, a fresh idea, an inspiration, a possibility.
Such an integral part of life, dawn is part of our vocabulary. “It just dawned on me,” we say in exasperation or awe when we’ve figured out an answer to our muddle, some new way of being that’s eluded us till now. It dawned. It was there all along, just waiting for discovery but we hadn’t noticed, hadn’t known, didn’t realize, like someone sleeping through it all until 10 a.m., unaware that dawn had happened without them. The world had moved on from night to day and they hadn’t even seen the miracle, noticed the shift; been there to sing praise like the birds do each morning at dawn — even if I can’t hear them.
Dawning is such a good feeling, when it happens. It’s like taking a deep breath, a fresh breath, slowly — not like a gulp or a gasp or a cough or a sniff. It’s a sure thing! A fact.
Our heritage. A gift. Daily.
Last night, I was fumbling around in the dark, almost stumbled on that box of grapefruit by my back door; because the timed car lights had gone out before I reached the entrance to my home. This morning the house was still dark when I headed for the desk where my computer waited to record these thoughts. I turned on lights in the living room, the kitchen, said “good morning” to the cats on the back porch, fed them, and proceeded to the office. The computer stirred and I began to write … dawn.
Just now I journeyed back to my east window to note the progress. The sun was up. A golden orb, a spotlight on this day, shining through Nate’s trees. Dawn had occurred as I reminded you of the glory of it all and here we are about to experience this wondrous gift of another day in the country.