Hardly a glimpse of the full moon because of low-lying mists in the valley, grey evenings and mornings white as a wet sheet.
Making myself a pot of tea in the kitchen, the garden blank-faced with mist, but on the kitchen table there are wands of flame-coloured gladioli, a neighbour’s gift. A dear elderly man who went out into his garden and cut an armful of his plants for me, handing them to me at the front door with a shy uncomfortable smile. Rare Zimbabwean gladioli, small vivid blooms, nothing like the monstrous hybrids sold by florists. Those light wands of scarlet mixed with hot orange that grow wild in the Zimbabwean grasslands, bringing back lthe lovely memories of my homeland. The kitchen glowing like a fire, lit by flowers.
Remembering how I made myself get up out of bed this morning at 5am and sit cross-legged in meditation, dull-headed and knotted up inside after a sleepless night of worries and unhappiness. Byproduct of flu, I suppose. And just sitting with a conscious mind, breathing in and out with silent deliberation, letting the dust settle, sitting out the hour with patience and focus despite niggling misery. It worked and I make a note that this is what to do, to keep up the daily disciplines and especially so when ill or vulnerable. A promise I made myself in early sobriety, to live differently, live as if my own life mattered. And this has stood me in good stead, to pay attention and stay with the beauty as well as the grief or pain.