615. The sun came up like gold through the trees, and I felt like I was in heaven. ~Harriet Tubman

The sun, with all those planets
revolving around it and dependent on it,
can still ripen a bunch of grapes
as if it had nothing else in the universe to do.
~Galileo Galilei

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The Sun
Have you ever seen
anything
in your life
more wonderful

than the way the sun,
every evening,
relaxed and easy,
floats toward the horizon

and into the clouds or the hills,
or the rumpled sea,
and is gone–
and how it slides again

out of the blackness,
every morning,
on the other side of the world,
like a red flower

streaming upward on its heavenly oils,
say, on a morning in early summer,
at its perfect imperial distance–
and have you ever felt for anything
such wild love–
do you think there is anywhere, in any language,
a word billowing enough
for the pleasure

that fills you,
as the sun
reaches out,
as it warms you

as you stand there,
empty-handed–
or have you too
turned from this world–

or have you too
gone crazy
for power,
for things?
~Mary Oliver

…May the Lord bless his land with the precious dew from heaven above and with the deep waters that lie below; with the best the sun brings forth and the finest the moon can yield; with the choicest gifts of the ancient mountains and the fruitfulness of the everlasting hills… ~Deuteronomy 33:13-15   ✝

** Image, “Sunlight” by Heather Reichard, via Pinterest

613. But soft, what light through yonder window breaks? ~William Shakespeare

Here comes the sun
and I say, it’s all right…
Little darlin’, it seems like years
since it’s been clear….
~Excerpted lyrics by John Lennon
George Harrison, and Paul McCartney

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Degree by degree by degree a glow appears on the eastern horizon. Brighter and lighter it grows as inch by inch by inch the sun lifts night’s shades higher and higher revealing a cloudless sky was washed clean of the cold, greys of past days. Up and up and up rises the blaze of the sun, ancient bearer of light and warmth and cheer. In the rising incandescence the busy birds are chirpier, the scampering squirrels are friskier, and the prowling feral cats are bushy-tailed. The sun, the sun, the marvelous sun–now it’s kissing the tips and tops of things before oozing and spreading like melting butter on a warm piece of toast over everything it touches. The morning air, charged with electricity in anticipation of its fullness, is kindling a warmer rhythm for this wintry day, and when the first splinters of the sun’s golden rays finally run across the garden and lawn, the dance of life will pulse strong again in hearts and feet alike. And then, when there is light, glorious, glorious light, we shall rise and greet thee, O Lord, with glad and grateful hearts.

And God said, “Let there be light,” and there was light. God saw that the light was good, and he separated the light from the darkness. ~Genesis 1:3-4   ✝

**Image via Pinterest

532. Oh darkly, deeply, beautifully blue… ~Lord Byron

The touch of an infinite mystery
passes over the trivial and the familiar,
making it break out into ineffable music…
The trees, the stars, and the blue hills
ache with a meaning
which can never be uttered in words.
~Rabindranath Tagore

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The world is blue at its edges and in its depths. This blue is the light that got lost. Light at the blue end of the spectrum does not travel the whole distance from the sun to us. It disperses among the molecules of the air, it scatters in water.

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Water is colorless, shallow water appears to be the color of whatever lies underneath it, but deep water is full of this scattered light, the purer the water the deeper the blue.

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The sky is blue for the same reason, but the blue at the horizon, the blue of land that seems to be dissolving into the sky, is a deeper, dreamier, melancholy blue, the blue at the farthest reaches of the places where you see for miles, the blue of distance.

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This light that does not touch us, does not travel the whole distance, the light that gets lost, gives us the beauty of the world, so much of which is in the color blue. ~Rebecca Solnit

In the eyes, windows to the soul, of some and even in the color of our unique, blue marble of a planet one comes upon the divine mystery that “can never be uttered in words” at the “edges and in the depths” of the “deeply, beautifully blue” of which Byron, Tagore, Solnit, and “Holy Writ” speak.

They are to take a blue cloth and cover the lamp-stand that is for light, together with is lamps, its wick trimmers and trays, and all its jars for the olive oil used to supply it. ~Numbers 4:9   ✝

**Images via Pinterest

498. Grace is but glory begun, and glory is but grace perfected. ~Jonathan Edwards

The wine of divine grace is limitless:
All limits come only from the faults of the cup.
Moonlight floods the whole sky from horizon to horizon;
How much it can fill your room depends on its windows.
Grant a great dignity, my friend, to the cup of your life;
Love has designed it to hold His eternal wine.
~Rumi

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Let us then approach the throne of grace with confidence, so that we may receive mercy and find grace to help us in our time of need. ~Hebrews 4:6    ✝

** Image via Pinterest

496. Every leaf speaks bliss to me, fluttering from the autumn tree. ~Emily Brontë

the air is different today
the wind sings with a new tone
sighing of changes coming…
~Rhawk, Alban Elfed

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“Summer, barbarous in beauty,” ended yesterday in the autumnal equinox’s circle of equal light and equal night. Now we can, during the course of autumn’s mellow morns and brisk eves, savor long our harvests and go deep into our reflections of what has been accomplished and learned on this year’s trip around the sun. Harsh wintry chills, though soon to be on the horizon, will not set in for quite a while, and so there are yet ample hours before winter’s seclusion is imposed to spend time in nature’s haunts and reminisce about the fruitfulness of all that has come to us this year. So, let us all joyfully enter the autumn courts of Creation with what remains of our annual “time coin” and ponder why we were given this year, what reached in and touched us, and how deep the imprint of our encounters and experiences went. In so doing we shall be able to assess what we began that might endure, what or whom we impacted with goodness, where we allowed ourselves to receive and give love, as well as when and where we made a positive difference in the world.

For the LORD your God will bless you in all your harvest and in all the work of your hands, and your joy will be complete. ~Deuteronomy 16:15b   ✝

**Image via Pinterest

484. Flowers are those little colorful beacons of the sun from which we get sunshine when dark, somber skies blanket our thoughts. ~Dodinsky

The earth has received the embrace of the sun
and we shall see the result of that love.
~Hunkesni (Sitting Bull)

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The flowers in these photos are the result of another year’s embrace of the sun. It will be the remembrance of them and the haunting songs of their colors, separately and collectively, that will lift my spirits when in the months to come we traverse winter’s “vale of grief.” If my memory of them should grow dim, I’ll have but to look heavenward and watch for them in the rising and the setting of the sun on days when a window in the gloom has been opened. In those moments when they streak the eastern or western horizon in a blaze of glory I’ll remember that as the earth tilts back toward the sun, the sun’s embrace will bring the flowers, their lovely colors, and their songs back to life. When they return and the air is filled with the music of many rhymes, my prayer is. . .

That the morning sun stir us with gladness from ours bed,
That the winds of March move us happily along the new year’s road,
That the rains of April renew our strength,
That the flowers and colors of May captivate our sight,
That the summer inflame our zeal,
That autumn’s colors stimulate our dreams,
That the silver moon make us wiser yet,
That the Lord keep us young at heart so that
we are full of life, laughter, song, and gratitude
for the holiness and goodness in all that the sun and His love embraces.
~Edited and adapted from a blessing by Fr. Andrew Greeley

The heavens declare the glory of God; the skies proclaim the work of his hands. Day after day they pour forth speech; night after night they display knowledge. There is no speech or language where their voice is not heard. Their voice goes out into all the earth, their words to the ends of the world. In the heavens He has pitched a tent for the sun, which is like a bridegroom coming forth from his pavilion, like a champion rejoicing to run his course. ~Psalm 19:1-5    ✝

** I made the collage of flowers from images found on PInterest.

478. If I can put one touch of rosy sunset into the life of any man or woman, I shall feel that I have worked with God. ~Gilbert K. Chesterton

Tonight the sun died like an Emperor…
great scarlet arcs of silk…
saffron…green…crimson…
and the blaze of Venus to remind one
of the absolute and the infinite…
~John Coldstream

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The busy buzzing of the bees had ceased, and the butterflies had completed the day’s last waltz as gentle breezes began ruffling leaves late yesterday. As the zephyrs moved through the yard, the nodding sea oats looked like jittery lawn dancers in the descending, shadows of darkness. The sunlight, with night, the vanquishing “emperor,” nipping at its heels, had almost oozed out of the day as I went out to watch it yield more and more of its hold on the garden. While I kept an eye on the stunning blaze along the western horizon, I saw the yard birds diving and darting into safe havens for the night and the screeching grackles, much higher in the sky, looking for lodging elsewhere. The hastening darkness added frantic drama to their random forays for nightly asylum but not enough to make me feel even the slightest remorse for making sure they didn’t return to my yard. Then in the distance I heard a train whistle, and from the sound the locomotive seemed to be moving at a fast and frenzied pace for home, and I hoped it, too, would make it before long. As the last shaft of sunlight moved up and off the towering oak, a velvety hush lowered, and the lone sparrow who’d been sitting on the edge of the roof at last vanished. Then, boom, the sun fell off the edge of the world, and the blackness of night was to be denied no longer.

Each part of a day has a feel and reality of its own. Take time to savor the uniqueness in each passing moment and say a prayer of simple praise for comforting patterns and rhythms.

May you go into the night
blessed, sheltered and protected.
May your soul calm, console and renew you.
~John O’Donohue

By day the Lord directs His love, at night His Son is with me-a prayer to the God of my life. Psalm 42:8   ✝