Waiting in the school's parking lot, I was absentmindedly staring at the gorgeous blue sky. It had rained for more than a week and the clear sky blotted with milky clouds was dreamy. My eyes hadn't moved from this one spot in the sky which was just above the middle school's gymnasium. It was perfect, no glare and no reflection off any car's glass or metal. My vision was completely relaxed and I was enjoying these few moments of solitude and peace. A bird flew into my transfixed range of sky and it captured my attention. It's presence was the beginning of a trance I had moved into without being conscious of it. The bird began gliding in lazy circles above the building, slightly distancing itself away from the tree line. It's wing span was impressive but not any more than an average size hawk. It climbed on an imaginary spiral staircase, flapping its wings occasionally against the wind. Moving so softly, with so little effort as it reached farther into the sky. It's wings took on a gossamer effect. Its see through rust colored feathers complimented the sun on this early fall day. The breeze carressed through my car and it reminded me briefly that I wasn't the one flying. I was grounded but looking at this bird, titling and glistening against the blue sky made me forget. The circles of flight were larger now and higher so the bird was getting smaller. I was hypnotized. The wings turned into a kite diving to the right and then the left like ship sails on a bobbing sea. With a just the slightest tilt, effortless movement through the sky, not searching for anything, the bird was just feeling the freedom of being able to fly. It was me who was flying and I was fluent in this new language. I was light. I was being carried. I was having a spiritual elevation. In that moment, I was not alone. The bird and I were not merely God's creations on different days. We were connected. I was delighting in it's serene beauty and it was celebrating it's gift of flight. Because we were appreciating the simplicity of it in unison, made the event even more inspiring. Back and forth, the wings wove silky lines through the transparent sky. I no longer heard the street noise. I didn't hear parents talking in nearby cars. I could only hear the wind, feel the sun and all of my senses intensely alert but unmoving from the soothing paralysis. Everything was falling away. I hadn't taken my eyes of the bird. It was so far away now that I was afraid to look away that it would become merely a speck and I wouldn't be able to find it again. I imagined in my mind's eye what the world would look like from up there. How small the gray pavement would be, the black of the roof, the blocks of patchwork grass, the tops of trees and the moving toy cars.
The shadow of a cloud passed over me and it feels several degrees cooler. My skin prickled at the change and the hairs on my arm have sweeping electricity. It broke my attention from the bird just enough that I decide to reach for my phone to capture a picture before it becomes no more than a dot on the blue canvas. I hit the camera app and looked up. It was gone. My eyes raced back and forth, searching the sky. I stretch in my seat and hang my head out of the driver's side window to look harder. The sun stings my eyes and I realize the moment has passed. I shouldn't have looked away. That moment with the bird and me is gone. The connection is broken. The unison is lost. I know it's ridiculous but I'm crestfallen. In an effort to capture a moment with a phone's camera, I lost my moment of a beautiful, natural hallucination.
On the drive home, I imagined every bit of it. I wanted to remember it. I wanted to experience it again. So I wrote it down.
Seeds to Share:
2 Corinthians 3:17 - Now the Lord is the Spirit, and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is freedom.
Psalm 55:6 - And I say, "Oh that I had wings like a dove! I would fly away and be at rest!"