As the dark acid-washed-denim sky lightened, softened in the east, my eyes were drawn upward. An owl, head mechanically swiveling while it watched the field, perched on the power pool.
This is one of the reasons I love my home.
The turkey clusters/herds/flocks grow a little boring. Turkeys are not exciting animals.
I have even been known to yawn at deer, unless one plunges from the woods onto the pavement in front of me.
Ten days ago, I stood outside while fat, puffed snowflakes fell from the sky, landing on my eyelashes and nose while I tried to shovel up their friend’s carcasses. Yesterday people walked around in shorts. (This is not recommended by the National Optometrist Association. Iowans are not known for bronze, easy-on-the-eye skin.) While I shoveled a Robin sang. Maybe it was complaining, but my ear accepted the tune as music.
But I don’t think it’s the wildlife that entices me to call this place home. For sure, it’s not the fish-belly white skin or the occasional foot of snow. It’s deeper than those perks and quirks.
After returning from a blissful trip to Hawaii, I struggled with the Iowa December. Minnesota’s lakes, Hawaii’s ocean and artistic arrays of sand, Seattle’s temperatures, Colorado’s stark beauty all call, siren song style, to me. My soul longs for the breathtaking poignancy of those places, sometimes even the loneliness of those slivers of beauty.
But one afternoon, a few weeks home from Hawaii, I stood in my backyard while the breeze tossed my hair, and I lifted my face to the sun. As I opened my eyes, I realized that when I looked up I couldn’t really tell the difference between paradise on earth and home.
May you find a sliver of paradise in your circumstances, and in your place in this world.