“Two phoebes flit from tree to eave to tree
Feeding the tyrant nestlings you can’t see”
—Judith Moffett, in her poem Grace
I do love waking up in a convent. The single beds, the monastic minimalism, the cheerful quilted bedspread that brings women’s work into the room. A sacred space.
I drink my coffee outside, early, despite the drizzling rain. I find a spot under the fire escape and I’m able to stay dry while watching the activity of the birds in the lush green gardens around me. Only a mosquito finding soft flesh on my coffee-cup-holding hand disturbs my peace, momentarily.
The coolness of mornings in the summer up North seem to last longer. In Florida, by 8 a.m. the heat can already be overbearing. So I luxuriate in the coolness of the day, enhanced by grey skies, low-hanging clouds, and light rain. It just makes all the green around me look even more lush.
I hear the insistent calls of those tiny “tyrants,” baby mockingbirds, calling out around me: “Feed me, pleeeease, pleeeese, pleeeese, feed me.” A constant noise in the early days of summer.
Life is calling! Feed me!
So off I go, for a run with a friend.
In the garden.
—At the Transfiguration Spirituality Center in Glendale, Ohio, on retreat with Women Writing for (a) Change facilitators.