In my dream, I’m visiting a dear friend whom I don’t often get to see. Each hour of our time together is precious.
As our reunion is nearing its unwelcome end, we hear a soft knock on the door. Answering, we find Katie, an itty-bitty angel, not even five feet tall. In waking life, I know her as a woman in her late eighties, a mother of twelve, a longtime hospital chaplain, a lover of the arts. Her short-term memory has turned into a sieve, too holey to hold much of anything anymore. But her heart remains a huge earthen bowl, capable of holding the world.
On September 4, Jihong and I delivered Nathan to college for his sophomore year. An hour after we unloaded his stuff at the dorm, Nathan auditioned on his cello for a seat in the symphonic orchestra, a premier touring group comprised of highly skilled student-musicians, most of them majoring in music.
Imagine yourself holding a hammer.
Now, strike your hammer against a big pane of tempered glass.
Watch the glass shatter into thousands of crystalline pieces, dropping all around your feet.
Hear the initial crash of their fall. Hear the gentle tinkling in the silence that follows, as bits of glass sink and settle.