The Beginning of Devotion
How a line from Mary Oliver changed the course of my path on a cold November night years ago
There is a click, click, click on the south-facing windows of our home right now as the rain dances between ice, rain, and snow. The winds have shifted just the last few days, the air is cold and damp, and everything smells like the end of the growing season. Decay is heavy in the air, and the leaves float in far less vibrant colors, preparing us for the first snowstorms ahead.
The Milkweed seed that parachuted through the air just weeks ago in that colored array of trees has now found its place on the soil where it will settle in for winter and begin to root as the animals hibernate and snow soon covers the landscape. There is this conversation all around of things releasing. It is a nostalgic conversation that reminds me of all the previous Novembers. So many important ones, but I am thinking of our first back in Michigan after years away.
I often think about how my adult life has felt like layers of fallen leaves, one year building to another. Sometimes in November, when things are quiet and the days are darker, I sit back and remember all that has guided me over the years to the moment I find myself now. Novembers always bring transition—immense transition, typically whether deep in our souls or more visible on the surface.
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