What I noticed this weekend is how aware I was of the rising and setting of the sun and moon. I had to stop and be part of it. Here, I live more in the changing of the light, let it filter over time through my consciousness rather than coming to a full stop to gasp and clap.
There I sat, and watched the running of the grass, and here, well, here, too, I pause now to watch the flight of a crow and the feathered movement of the needles on the redwood tree. They reach more and more closer to me. In a few more years, I can lean out the window and shake hands.
Thomas Merton has this to say.
More and more I appreciate the beauty and solemnity of the "Way" up through the woods, past the bull barn, up the stony rise, into the grove of tall, straight oaks and hickories and around through the pines on top of the hill, to the cottage.
Sunrise. Hidden by pines and cedars on the east side of the house. Saw the red flame of it glaring through the cedars, not like sunrise but like a forest fire. From the window of the front room, then he, the Sun (can hardly be conceived as other than "he"), shone silently with solemn power through the pine branches.
Now after High Mass the whole valley is glorious with morning light and with the song of birds.
It is essential to experience all the times and moods of this place. No one will know or be able to say how essential. Almost the first and most important element of a truly spiritual life, lost in the constant, formal routine of Divine Offices under the fluorescent lights in choir--practically no change between night and day.
Thomas Merton. Turning Toward the World. Edited by Victor A. Kramer (San Francisco: HarperSanFrancisco, 1997): 122.