Woke up and read blogs while having coffee, waiting for the dawn. More and more as I become familiar with posters’ lives and concerns, hopes and challenges, I am able to read between the lines and feel the weight of the unspoken.
My heart aches for the friend who died of alcoholic convulsions in New Orleans last week. I had not seen her for years and remember her only as a brilliant architectural student. The struggle is over for her now.
But the news gave me a hollow chill inside — I was reminded of a morning a decade or so ago when I went into the kitchen all shaky and nauseous with bruises on my face and saw empty vodka bottles everywhere, vomit all over the place. I couldn’t believe I had drunk so much, had no idea how I had obtained the alcohol, had no memory of the vomiting, knew I might well have had some kind of seizure because there was blood in my mouth. Alcoholism is such a frightening death-in-life.
It is such a pleasure to wake early and see dawn breaking, to look at the world as if it is fresh, that intimate tender drama of seeing something or someone for the first time, made anew. Colour pouring into the grey valley, the mountains warmed with light. It is so important to stop and reflect on the beauty in our daily reality, the loveliness of a transient dawn in Africa. In ancient Hebrew, the planet Venus was called ‘deer of the dawn’ because it appeared so shyly and had such a delicate fleeting presence.
The word ‘dawn’ intrigues me. It has a number of meanings. Dawn has to do with light filling the sky. An idea dawns on us, meaning that it develops and grows. There is the sense of opening, changing, light filling the mind and heart. A luminous beginning. It comes from the Old English dagian, to become day and is an active verb in its Norse origin: to dawn. We emerge into a new dawn; a new consciousness dawns in our lives; there is a dawning awareness of possibility. An hour of gold, starting afresh.
Image from photographer Nick Brandt found here.