Friday, January 6, 2012

Journal 106 It's 4am

Awake far too late after a long day of travel, but to have St. Maarten waiting at the end of the journey is always worth it.

Here is just a view heading into dusk, my favourite time of day on the island (oddly, my most anxious when I am at home), but here it invites peace in and the waves have a hypnotic effect.

Found, at a used bookstore, the second book in the series of four by Madeleine L'Engle, "The Summer of the Great-Grandmother", probably not most people's idea of a vacation read, but so far I'm hooked. Reading about her mother's slow decline into senility, at the age of ninety, L'Engle's vivid observations and musings about 'false guilt' that adult children often feel towards their aging parents despite caring for them and guiding them in their time of old age, their time of failing health.

Odd things to be reading about sitting in scenery as compelling as this but today it felt fitting.

I've had a lot of confusion lately when I think about the afterlife, and sometimes it feels like it relates to the fact that I'm a visual person: I can't visualize it.
Over Christmas, my niece informed us, matter-a-factly, in that way that only children can, that Papa (that is what my niece and nephew called my father) was celebrating Christmas in heaven. I remembered back to my own childhood and my version of heaven, the common one I suppose, of clouds, and floating angels, and 'looking down' on earth and all those on it.

It was the waves that helped give me some help today as I watched them, methodically pounding the shore--it restored my own 'image' for lack of a better word, of the afterlife. Not a place so much as an 'existence', just like the waves--flowing in and out, like the presence of spirit, how sometimes it feels close, and sometimes further away.

Today was a nice day. The spirits were close at hand.

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