It is happening again—outside my study window.


Like hard hats, nubs tip the branches of my old lilac bush, caught up in the play of trickster winds. Over the winter months, the nubs appeared dormant, as if pondering their eventual flourishing. Overcast skies, drenching rains, and bone-chilling temperatures imprisoned them in darkness.

But not so this morning—there is a change: the swollen nubs are splitting apart; beneath the shriveled skins glimmer a new green as if hesitant to trumpet the earth’s warming. Such coloring stirs memories of other spring-watchings that unfolded like gyrating clowns tooting horns and clanging cymbals.

Like the bud, the terminal illness in my body is splitting open colorful vistas for further exploration: dreams, significant reading, stillness, contemplative prayer, substantive phone contacts, and writing. New lessons swell my spirit and keep it fresh: gentling my body with its symptoms, accepting the inevitability of my swelling and shriveling, waiting for inner nudges to embrace the next right step.

Interludes of angst also occur, and I know to be still with them as they do pass.

More than ever, my spirit seeks an increasing solitude within my body’s womb-like darkness: therein, to remember, to pray, to forgive, to give thanks, and to embrace the Unknown. The gift of another twenty-four hours for these endeavors helps.

Admittedly the richest time in my life, this new coloring is working out as I await my transition, whenever, however…