Woods Pond before sunrise

Woods Pond before sunrise

At last, on Thursday, I rise before the sun.  Lisa stumbles down with coffee in hand and drags me out of bed.  Together we pull the kayaks into the water, though first we inspect them thoroughly with flashlights, making sure there are no sleeping spiders to tickle our feet.  And then with few words we push off onto an ocean of glass and mist.

The lake is still.  Only one lone bird is awake and singing.  Fog hangs down silent and heavy over the pines—the distant shore but a watercolor—an idea of a forest—a memory of one long ago. 

As I move silently I half expect the Arthurian lady of the lake to appear and whisper something wise, perhaps ancient mother secrets of creation.  My paddle dips into the water.  But the ripples disappear almost instantly as we glide glide glide along the lake, paddling to the middle.  The eastern sky is becoming blue now and then from behind the Monet pines fingers of orange reach up, like a hand offering hope.  Then the great globe rises brilliant and true—a drop of primary color oil paint on a watercolor masterpiece:  brilliant, garish, warm.

We sigh, Lisa and I.  We break our silence to talk of metaphors of God and sun.  I point out that every ancient culture worships the sun in one way or another because of moments just like these when a dark night instantly becomes day.  More birds are in the sky and trees now waking their children and their neighbors with hymns to this hope—this promise that we have one more chance to live.  The mist is fading fast, giving way to a brilliant day of blue skies.

I breathe in the smell of pine and cedar and whisper thank you.  It is late before we beach the boats.  Activity has broken out now on shore.  I enter the cabin to see my child raise his head and smile—“Good morning, mama!”  I pick him up and wrap him in his blankets, snuggling him in my lap.  “Yes,” I breathe into his little ear.  “it is”

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