“If the day and the night are such that you greet them with joy, and life emits a fragrance like flowers and sweet-scented herbs, is more elastic, more starry, more immortal — that is your success.” -Henry David Thoreau
I opened the used book store this morning. I work there once a week. I work for free. I spend my time greeting a few customers each day. I browse the shelves. I sweep the floor. I huddle by the radiator when the heating gets temperamental.
I drive to pick up Boo from school and I have no heat in the car, but the engine gives off plenty of warmth on its own. I never turn the radio on…I like hearing the rumbling of the road and I notice more around me that way too.
It’s so cold here today that the iciness hangs in the air. It feels like it might snow. The bitter weather makes the indoors so cozy and nestlike:
I set my timer and write without stopping for 30 minutes, even if it makes no sense. And when the timer goes off I find my heart wanting to write more. And I sit here wondering how I ended up in such a place. How watching the clouds roll in and out can be enough to fill the soul. How living so close to nature took away my fear of the dark and things unknown.
In the book Dakota, Kathleen Norris describes how the Great Plains became her monastery:
“…my place set apart, where I thrive and grow. It surprises me also to find that I no longer need to visit the city – any city – to obtain what I am missing, because I don’t feel deprived.
Both Plains and monastery are places where distractions are at a minimum and you must rely on your own resources, only to find yourself utterly dependent on forces beyond your control; where time seems to stand still, as it does in the liturgy; where your life is defined by waiting.”
Yes. These mountains have become my monastery. A place where I thrive and grow.
Everything that seems empty is full of the angels of God. – St. Hilary
Find your monastery.