Tender Mercies

Because I will take them where I can find them.

*I had a meeting at the hospital the other day, and as I was walking in, I heard the piano. There is a Steinway in the lobby, and they have volunteers come and play during the day; it helps detract from the whole hospital feel. Anyway, as I came flush with the piano, I looked to see who was playing. It was an older lady, playing -- improvising -- without music. She was playing "I'll be Loving You, Always" an old song (1925) written by Irving Berlin. I could hear the words in my head, which was a nice little reprieve from my own thoughts, but what really lifted my spirits was the look on the lady's face: she was grinning: ear-to-ear, all-her-teeth-showing grinning. She was having the time of her life, and I felt so grateful that I got to participate, even for a moment, in unadulterated joy.

*I could see the North Star the other night. The night was clear and beautiful, and it was bright. It was comforting to be in the presence of constancy. It was more comforting to remember that even though the world is big, and the universe bigger, I have a place in it. I know who I am (which is also a mercy), and I know I'm loved (another).

*The simple joy of a sugar cookie, proffered by a friend.