Sunday, 24 August 2008

Eternity is Now

Some years ago, I was sitting with my mother at a concert, battling back panic. I was starting a new teaching job the next day, and, as usual, felt unprepared and guilty for doing something as frivolous as listening to music in a place where I couldn't possibly make lists. As the singing flowed over me, a phrase suddenly came to me: Eternity is Now. I knew this as a ballet set to Mahler, but the phrase is far older than that. Fearing the morrow, I wondered how the present could be everlasting (I was much younger then), and had a vision of us all in the concert hall, enveloped in a golden column stretching up to infinity and down to forever.

I have five days left in Victoria. I don't want to go back to Ottawa, to the grit, the loneliness, the smells, and above all, my younger daughter's final year in elementary school and all the stress that implies. So I look out of the window at the rain. (You can actually walk in the rain in Victoria; sometimes you can even step between the raindrops.) And I stand in the doorway gazing out at the garden and gulp in lungfuls of clean air, sweetened by the sea. And I call forth that eternal, vertical, golden column. I am here now. I need to rejoice in that.

1 comment:

Vanessa said...

Sometimes, "being where you are" can be the hardest thing to do, in times both stellar and not quite. It requires a lot of clarity of mind and the ability to still yourself amid all the noise and the flurry. Maybe this way we succeed in bottling up the best times to help us through the bleak ones.