Random and not so random musings from a 5th generation NE Missourian who became a 1st generation Episcopalian. Let the good times roll!

Ok, well I stole this pic from our dear Elizabeth, but you get the drift.

In case you're not a "natural world junkie" like me, Cross-Quarter day is the day in the middle between a solstice and an equinox. I'll be honest; Cross-Quarter day fills me with a sense of sadness.

Now, you have to realize that one of the things I love about NE Missouri is I get all four seasons, but not too terribly much of any of them. I love all the seasons for what they are. But each year, as the seasons unfold, I get wistful about their end. Even winter. (White "wintery winter", anyway. Unfortunately, in Missouri, the end of winter/beginning of spring is its own season, "Mud season." I have never gotten terribly sentimental about mud season, living on a gravel road.)

Cross-Quarter day often catches my attention because it's the day that marks when the days will start getting shorter at a faster rate.

I have to tell you...I dearly LOVE the long evenings from June to August. I remember one time, traveling to the North Dakota/Canadian border region, and enjoying the delight of playing an entire round of golf where I teed off on #1 at 6 p.m. It did not get dark till almost 11 p.m. Summer nights that seem to go on forever are magical to me, just as bright shiny snow-covered January days are magical to me.

But what always hits me in "the long evening season" is that it is the only time of the year I can even seem to truly believe in the possibility that something about me, my life, who I am, just MIGHT live forever. The "days that seem to last forever" open me up to it.

Many of you who read my blog know that I occasionally struggle with, to put it in Jerry Springer-esque terms, "I've got a problem with the afterlife." Honestly, there is a part of me that doesn't believe in it. It's that little voice that yells in my ear at 3 a.m. that says, "Maybe this is all there is. Maybe you are the biggest dumbass on the planet, with this God stuff."

But then moments like tonight come. I had finished supper, I had lit the "bug candles" (and honestly, I am of the opinion they actually ATTRACT bugs rather than repel them) and I was walking back and forth up and down my gravel road, and looked up. At that very moment, both the setting sun and the risen moon were visible. To my right, to the west, was the end of the day. To my left, higher up, in the purple of the early night, was a gibbous moon. Both together, simultaneously--the end--and the beginning. It was a moment when time, as I like to say, "bent."

In most recent months, I have become more aware of the "bending of time" in all sorts of interesting ways. I have struggled to understand what that new awareness is about.

The more I think about it, I am starting to think it is about making the rest of me--the part that doesn't have that little voice whispering in my ear--to believe in "forever."

I stood out in my road, looking at the sun and the moon together, simultaneously, and I felt the tears come. Tears that the wind swept away, as it is a fairly breezy night. Tears of gratitude that here in my pasture, my pasture that the average person would say is "not all that interesting", in the sky that seems to stretch to eternity, and the green ocean of the blowing grass calls a siren song of a depth of feeling that I hardly believe I possess.

In that moment, I can say with conviction, "I believe."

Sometimes I think about how this plain stretch of pasture becomes "me." It becomes me in my most solo and in a way, lonesome moments. Bare and lonesome and stretching on forever. Will it still "be what it is" when I am dead? Will it still be a holy place? Will my footprint be somewhere one it? Oh, not that it really matters, but I hate to think that what it is to me, at this moment, would die with me.

But then that voice that says "I believe" speaks up, and I no longer worry about it.


When I went out to feed the cats last night I saw a star. A star. What a concept. Visible stars. I said rather involuntarily - 'Thanks, Dad. Good to know they are still up there.' Good to know Godde still is regardless of my seeming unwillingness to act as if I were aware of Godde's existence.



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Kirksville, Missouri, United States
I'm a longtime area resident of that quirky and wonderful place called Kirksville, MO and am wondering what God has hiding round the next corner in my life.

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