“Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.”
~ Thích Nhất Hạnh
I woke up in my own bed here at our farm, following a long trip home last night in our ute packed high with the things we will need for our coming retreat.
After our city stay, this country morning is a revelation.
Still dark. Cold. Frost riming the grass blades like diamond-edged swords. My breath fogging in front of me. Crystals of ice in the dogs’ outside water bowl. The air heavy and quiet and pressed in around us.
The morning so still that I can hear the occasional distant roar and grind of trucks changing gears as they climb the steep hinterland hills.
The birds are just waking up. One or two call to each other or sing happily, their feathers puffed out against the chill.
After my meditation I am stretching, and breathing air into my lungs. It is cold enough that the air stings my nose, and burns my lungs in a good way. A clean way.
The kettle on the stove is hissing and clicking as it warms the water for my pot of tea.
On my kitchen bench sits a lemon and a bunch of dewy herbs collected from the garden, ready to throw into the makings of a pot of homemade chicken soup.
Ben still asleep. Dogs still asleep.
A wallaby nibbles on the grass around the lemon tree.
Cows wander down the hill towards water, their new calves pressed tight to their sides.
My sweet peas in their pots at the back door have grown a foot in the time we’ve been away. While I wait for my tea to brew I weave their tendrils into the trellis that will support their blooms.
All this fresh cold air, this clean quiet morning is good for my soul.