Break of Day

Windmill 1

September 16, 2017

Nogal House

Vera Cruz, New Mexico


Break of Day


The day broke with perfection and if there was any concern as to the quality of the hours to come it was abolished. If some days seem born of struggle there are others which are blessed, as if the alignment of the stars has deemed them so and nothing can change that. I can only hope this holds true with this one!


Waking with the dawn has become a good practice over the years, as much out of necessity as desire. There is a calm beauty of that first few minutes of the day which seems to depart through the passage of time. There is so little reason to miss it and so many to justify the effort of getting to the door before the sun breaks over the mountains. If I have written of this one hundred times I have witnessed it by the thousands. Today was no exception.


This morning was filled with the usual beauty and in so many ways surpassed it. The seasons have changed and the first hint was the glow of the broom weed. The last few days have been warmer than usual and even as it bleached the green out of the summers’ ample grass so it coaxed the weeds to flower. Before the sun even brought its light the hills took on a golden cast and changed the nature of the view. In contrast, one spare cloud took pause above my house and greeted me with raindrops before it traveled on.


Not to be outdone a raven whooshed by and offered his greeting and in the back ground the elk sent up their song. They are coming into the rut and their high whistle reverberates from the canyons. It is the song of fall and one cannot avoid being captured by their exuberance. I had to stand quietly and listen before moving on with the day. It seems even my morning fire was caught in the spirit of the dawn and came to life quickly, the chunk of juniper crackling happily even after the rest was down to coals. My tea will be hot this morning and the oatmeal boiled quickly!


In the midst of this my eyes followed the solitary cloud as it drifted to the east, taking all promises of rain with it. After a good summer the earth has already dried and every bit of moisture is a blessing. The last of the rain drops touched my shoulders as I said my morning prayer. As if in answer the rising sun caught the topmost blades of the windmill. It is turned to the perfect angle as the wind still catches it even when the brake is set. The first light glowed off the blades and it was framed by the cloud.


So often the break of day is such that we can only bear witness but never capture to glory of its beginnings. It seems today I was able to do both, savoring the wonder of it and then finding not only the words but the perfect picture as well. If the mountains are already bathed in sunshine and the long shadows of the dawn washed away, the first light remains upon the page. If my morning prayer encompassed all of it I extend it further yet and hope that that first light, that soft glow of the sun on the windmill and the raindrops touch everyone today. There is, in the end, no greater beauty than the beginning of a new day, for all of us.

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