Saturday, September 1, 2012

Revelations by the light of the moon

Taken at 4:45 a.m. in my backyard

I couldn't sleep last night, so at around 4 a.m. I came downstairs to sit by the window and stare at the moon. Weird? Perhaps. But that's me. As I sat in our darkened family room looking out at the eerily bright backyard, lit only by the full moon, something occurred to me. The strange exterior landscape just beyond my window looked the way my interior landscape deep within my soul feels -- a dimly lit shadow world where nothing is absolutely certain and everything has vague edges and sketchy details. There's nothing to grasp onto, it seems. 

When the moon finally moved a bit in the sky and came into view from behind some tall maples and pines, it was as though it was shining its light right into my heart, asking me: Who are you? What do you believe? And what are you going to do with that information? But I had no answers. Only awe for the beauty of this particular moon on this particular night at this particular moment. Awe for the world we don't often see but is there nonetheless, hidden in the shadows of a suburban backyard, or in the dark recesses of our souls, places waiting to be explored if we put aside our fears.

As I continued to sit in the moonlight, I kept hearing the first line of an Emily Dickinson poem in my head: "I'm nobody. Who are you? Are you nobody, too?" Maybe it's okay to be nobody. Maybe it's okay to be uncertain. Maybe it's okay to spend time in the moonlit shadows of my soul.


Fran said...

I love how you are sharing this with us. What a generous act, and a courageous one as well. Prayers for you always, my friend.

Mary DeTurris Poust said...

Thanks, Fran, for your constant support and encouragement. :-)

Bill said...

Beautiful reflection. I've always been fascinated by the beauty of the moon. Francis apparently was too.

It's always OK to be uncertain, because being uncertain is being honest. I've also come to believe more and more that it's a blessing to be a "nobody," to be free of many responsibilities and expectations that can distract from what is true and enduring. "Then there's a pair of us, don't tell, they'd banish us you know."