I've been listening to Josh Garrel's new album on repeat since it came out just a few days ago. The last song on the album "Benediction" makes me think of Alexi Murdoch's "All My Days" which was popular when I was twenty-three and just out of college. And so for a moment last night with a cool wind slipping in through my south-facing-window I couldn't help but think of twenty-three. That first year out of school. Who I was and what I knew and what I thought I knew. So much has changed since then. Life is fuller. Better.
I'm not good at what is not known. In living in the muddled middle. I am not exceptional at hanging in that undetermined space. And yet so much life happens there. So much good happens there.
The refrain in Benediction is as follows:
As the days unfold/ hold your breath to see/ life is a mystery
Life is a mystery.
Benediction: the utterance or bestowing of a blessing.
Life is a mystery and that--that--is a blessing--the blessing. The unknown a gift. And the opportunity to hang there a divine invitation.
Which is pretty damn lucky.
So as winter finally gives over to spring, just before the trees really flower, when the earth holds its mighty breath in anticipation, I will look on this season of my own life--this great unknown--as a blessing of the highest order. It will not be a thing to get through, but a benediction. A holy season. When things begin with soft shuffling steps, and fear is large, but hope is larger. And we do our best, flawed humans that we are, to soften.