All That is Holy

I read about Carrie Newcomer’s song, Holy As a Day Is Spent, on Dominique Browning’s lovely blog Slow Love Life.  I’ve had the song on constant repeat for the last day and am hearing the lyrics over and over in my head.  The celebration of life’s ordinary divinity reminds me intensely of my reflections that everyday life is a practice and a poem.

Sometimes I think I focus overly on the practice part of the equation, on the relentless rhythm with which I trip and then, humbled, begin again.  Newcomer’s song made me think about all that is sacred in my life, the little things that I believe tend to hold the most holiness.  I didn’t sleep well last night at all, and I lay there thinking of some of those little things and moments, places where divinity lives in my ordinary life:

Running a washcloth over my son’s back, water sluicing over his wings

Wearing my mother’s wedding ring while she is in and out of medical care for an accident.  I look down at my right hand and see her ring and am filled with connection to her.  I wore her mother’s wedding right on my wedding day (she was my only grandparent who was no longer living, and not there) and am always reminded of that too.

The mumbled, mostly-asleep “I love you”s I get from the children when I tuck them in before I go to bed, pressing kisses to their foreheads, pulling the sheets up, closing my eyes and falling back, for a moment, through all the years of goodnights.

The sky, at all hours, in all weathers, in all seasons.  The way light, from a source beyond our knowing, streams through clouds.  The endless permutations of clouds, texture, and color that exist in the sky.  Watching weather roll in on the horizon.  For me, that is where divinity most surely lives.

A framed, handwritten copy of Yeats’ When You Are Old that Jessica gave to me on my 21st birthday which sits on my desk.

The way Grace and Whit notice birds in the backyard.  “Look, Mum, a cardinal!  A blue jay!”  Likewise, Grace’s mingled delight and worry (“will they be hit by a car?”) as a family of geese stroll across the major road in front of us.

My morning cup of coffee (now with rice milk and agave instead of milk and splenda).

Clean white sheets on my bed, where I often seek refuge surrounded by books, a darkened room, a fan blowing.

The tinkling notes of familiar lullabyes drifting through both Grace and Whit’s doors after they’ve gone to bed at night.

Folding laundry.  I love the smell of clean laundry, love the practice of smoothing out well-worn and well-known clothes, love creating neat piles out of a tangled basket..

Hydrangeas on the kitchen island, freshly cut from our front bushes.

The pink shell, decorated with drawings and splotches of sequins, that Whit gave me.  I have it on the windowsill of of my office so I see it a hundred times every day, each time I turn to look out the window at my tree.

Tell me, where do you find holiness in your life?

8 thoughts on “All That is Holy”

  1. Hi Lindsey,

    Have a listen to Peter Mayer’s “Holy Now”. I have a feeling it will appeal to you. And, I just want you to know that I really enjoy reading your thoughts.

  2. What a beautiful song!! Yet another reminder to pay attention to the little… it really is all there, isn’t it. The game of UNO played again and again, the sand between my toes, singing little girl in the back seat and on and on…

  3. ‘Tis a beautiful post, indeed. If there is one room in the house that I would call my chapel, it’s the kitchen. I find a lot of holiness there. I find holiness in writing letters to friends, drinking coffee, reading a good book at the end of the day, watching my daughter sleep (especially when her little hands are clasped together, as they were yesterday during her afternoon nap).

  4. I find Holiness in many of the same folded corners and darkened rooms as you, my friend. The trees. The wind. The quiet of a morning walk. A weathered fence. Abby’s laugh. Henry’s cheeks. Clean, white sheets. xo

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