Silently he flies,
swoops and lands atop the roof.
Look how he perches there.
So regal. So serene.
He worries for nothing.
He stretches his neck and ruffles his plumes in solitude as he gazes across the marsh.
What is he thinking of, I wonder?
As for me, I can only think of his beauty and
how I long for the apparent peaceful repose and
stillness that allow him to simply watch and wait.
He is not disturbed when another joins him.
His friend is smaller and stays in his own space,
clearly not meaning to intrude.
So they sit.
Together, but apart.
Each now enjoying his own rest.
Shrimp boats. Children. Wildlife. Barges.
All go by on their watch.
The smaller friend speaks and lights away while the regal one remains.
The sun sinks slowly over the marsh.
Sadly, I must go,
but he stays on.
At my house, we are big fans of anything that has to do with the beach and birds. One weekend afternoon recently, Hubby, Jacob and I headed down to Shem Creek, a sleepy little area near Charleston where there are a few restaurants and a kayak rental place along the boardwalk. The boys planned to kayak for a couple of hours, and I was going to find a place to sit and read. Emma, of course, was off spending time with her BFF. Yes, the rest of us are apparently chopped liver.
Off they went. I watched them as they paddled up the creek and hurried to the end of the the pier so I could wave at them as they passed by.
Afterwards, I meandered back down the pier heading toward the kayaking place. I contemplated going in to one of the restaurants there along the creek to sit and have a cold drink while I waited. As I was walking that way, I could hear all the noise. People talking, laughing, music playing. I had envisioned a place that was a little quieter.
I walked on and came to the end of the pier where there were some restrooms and a covered area that faced back toward the marsh. There were a few rocking chairs and so I took up residence there for the next hour and a half. I’ve been wading through Les Misérables since September and thought this would be a good time and place to get caught up.
Easily distracted as I am (shocker!!), I sat down in that rocker, opened up the Kindle and tried to read, but was instead captivated by feeling the sunshine and the breeze, smelling the salt air, and watching the scene in front of me. The marsh. All the birds. Boats passing by in the distance. The families coming to walk the pier.
I felt so warm and content in that moment and so grateful for the beautiful creation that God has given us to enjoy…if only we will be still and drink it in.
And then, along came that heron.
Sorry, Jean Valjean. Guess who’s chopped liver now? Les Misérables would have to wait.
I couldn’t take my eyes away from that heron and from the marsh. I was bummed that I did not have my camera with me, but afterwards, I was sure that my little point and shoot could not have done the scene justice anyway.
I am thankful for such beautiful things to see and experience and enjoy. I am also thankful for the moments when I take the time to stop, to rest and appreciate it. To be quiet—something I struggle with! To forget the worries of the day and be grateful. When I do that, I am never sorry. I am always refreshed. And I am filled with thanksgiving for the beauty of creation—and for the Creator.