You Reading This, Be Ready
Starting here, what do you want to remember?
How sunlight creeps along a shining floor?
What scent of old wood hovers, what softened
sour from outside fills the air?
Will you ever bring a better gift for the world
than the breathing respect that you carry
wherever you go right now? Are you waiting
for time to show you some better thoughts?
When you turn around, starting here, lift this
new glimpse that you found; carry into evening
all that you want from this day. This interval you spent
reading or hearing this, keep it for life –
What can anyone give you greater than now,
starting here, right in this room, when you turn around?
– William Stafford
I think it is a choice to live in and be present to the moment. For instance, I choose to pay attention to the view of Union Square on a sunny day from the sixth floor with seemingly tiny people moving about below, rather than being in the endodontist’s chair contemplating the painful shots and procedure to come. I choose in the moment how to handle my feelings of sadness and grief as I hear of another’s death from mental illness and addiction. It is not always easy to be present, yet it is the best choice. I am quite sure of that.