|"Grand Canyon", oil, by Karen Winters|
-- Gerard Manley Hopkins, “God’s Grandeur”
Sometimes my small world seems even smaller than usual, with almost none of the freshness Hopkins speaks of, and yet his words were an opening, this morning, to the fact that far down inside all things is freshness so plentiful it’s always overflowing. I find it so easy to be bored by my life – to let commonplace things pass by me like so much tiresome, insignificant stuff – and yet I know beyond a doubt that even the dust on the dashboard of my car is something special – that it has atoms inside it that were made billions of years ago, makes designs on the dashboard that have never been made just that way before, and lets sunlight shine across it in entirely fresh ways. I rarely even notice the dust that’s always all around us, which -- because dust, in its own way, is as stunning as any canyon -- is like living beside the Grand Canyon but never noticing it. Freshness like dust’s overflows around me, moment by moment – in smiles I see in the supermarket, in singular patterns of shadows spreading for the first time across roads, in streetlights whose shine seems ever so slightly different today from any earlier day. Even the keyboard I’m typing on has taken on fresh dust and dirt since yesterday, new specks here and there that create, in a way, a new, unused keyboard for my morning fun.