There's a rhythm to these days when it is so bright and the sun burns with so much ardor. After breakfast and the dishes and the making of beds, one load of laundry is begun. One load only, because that is the exact capacity of my clothes line. One load. It's been a shift from how I used to do this task. Before, I would attempt to complete the entire mess of it in one day, with a steely resolve that, inevitably melted into a feeling of chagrin. For no one wants to do load upon load of laundry. Ever.
But now, because I am dependent on something outside of my own energy reserves to complete this task, I must adjust my expectations. For you can't rush the sun anymore than you can hurry a turtle.
Today it was a set of sheets. Crisp, white sheets that were a wedding present. They are showing their age now (could it really have been fifteen years already?!). The sweet eyelet band at the top of the sheet, which is as close to frilly as I'll ever get, has frayed and torn. But that's okay.
I walk out to the line with the sheets thrown over my shoulder, for their damp coolness feels incredible in the close warm air. As I hang the sheets, I'm instantly thrown into a battle with the gusty breezes that will highlight this day. As I stand firm against the burgeoning cotton sail, the sweet smell of lavender and eucalyptus dance around my head and I am instantly enchanted. Such a simple, clean smell. And I am quieted somewhere deep.
I finish the task and as I turn to go back inside, I'm checked by another southerly gale. This one calls all of the laundry to attention and there is a quick snap of a sheet. I turn hastily turn around to see the source of the report.
And it is then that I see it.
The sheet has already melted from attention and is floating with an ease that inspires a jealous prick in my soul. It billows and falls, rises and sinks...all with a grace not often found in me. The trees cast shadows that look blue upon the white fabric and through the fingers of their leaves drip dapples of sunlight. The sheet has become as an artist's canvas and it is capturing the sky.
I want to gather it in, all for myself, because who doesn't want to hug the sky? But I know that the gift is really in the seeing, not in the owning.
So I stop. And I see.
"Even after all of this time
the Sun never says to the Earth,
'You owe me.'
Look what happens with a love like that,
It lights the whole sky."