On Turning Sixty
The hollowness of morning rain drums against a parched landscape. There is nothing sweeter than waking to its sound, especially after watering extensively last night to keep the orchids, red ginger and herbs; the flowering shrubs happy. The newly planted shower tree stands stark and leafless against a grey sky, bathing in the elixir of the gods.
We are blessed to live in this place, and there’s hardly a moment I take it for granted. To unwind at day’s end by walking a short distance down to surf thundering against ocean cliffs; to awaken to birdsong and the gentle clanging of wind chimes. In solitude, I wonder how tourists could possibly prefer the crowded beaches of Waikiki. But I don’t dwell on it unduly.
Sixty feels like fifty, only older. Age is a precarious companion, as the mind becomes richer in experience and wonder while the flesh becomes a challenge to maintain. I often observe those far older than me, knowing I will be in their shoes soon enough. When they dither and dally; as they struggle to remember or strike out in frustration, I strive to be more patient and understanding. For in those frail, failing bodies dwells a great treasure trove of history and passion. Inside these elders lies the lusty teenager; the harried young adult; the busy parent or the tortured artist. In the end, nothing matters but the kindness of others and the ability to remember one’s self well enough to function in a world one is about to withdraw from.
I cannot predict the future, but I can choose to live as fully as I am able, in the here and now. As long as I draw breath, I plan on experiencing all I can of this beautiful Earth while returning gratitude in the most profound means possible. In a sacred dance with the Mystery, the journey ever continues.