heart of the moment

"We listen to awaken our heart." - Mark Nepo

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I sat for hours under the shade of our pergola today, listening to the birds. So many birds! Wrens and chickadees, robins and finches, doves and sparrows gathered along the intersection of power lines towering in the corner of our yard. Each bird with its own flavor of chatter and song; whistles and trills, chirps and warbles, coos and fee-bees. Even the hummingbirds showed up. They took turns diving and flitting about the honeysuckle, the soothing whir of their tiny wings as they hovered for a few quick sips. Then just as quickly, they zoomed off to perch and chirp on a dainty limb of an aspen. 

So easily distracted by sight, I continued to sit with my eyes closed so I could tune into the range of sounds. I sat and I listened and listened deeply. Past my own breath, past the beating of my heart. Past the birds and rustling leaves, into the fading bark of a neighbor’s dog and the distant hum of tires on asphalt and the faint rumbling of a far-off plane. I listened, expanded my listening out as far as I could until I was no longer thinking about what I was hearing, no longer distinguishing between sounds. And it stuck me that I was listening into the heart of the moment, the steady rhythm of life. I sat there awhile, simply listening and savoring. It was the sweetest song I’ve ever heard.