Life as Art: Becoming Present


“Feelings come and go like clouds in a windy sky. Conscious breathing is my anchor.”
Thich Nhat Hanh

Be here now.

Such a simple message.

Yet, for most of us, we spend a great deal of the precious water of our lives thinking about the future or ruminating about the past (or both).

Neither activity is particularly useful. Neither will matter much in the long run – the past or the future – if we miss the now.

The now is here and then gone, with each breath in and out. The now is a river you cannot catch in your hand. You can feel it pulsing through you only if you slow down and listen, watch, and breathe.

The ‘now’ contains the dog sighing as she dreams, her feet running in place.

The ‘now’ is the sight of your mother’s weathered and life-beautiful face.


The ‘now’ contains homegrown tomatoes from the garden and the sight of tiny yellow birds eating insects on the patio. It contains well-worn flannel sheets and warm socks. It holds unread books whose pages beckon you, tantalize you with their mysterious trail of crumbs into the woods out back.

It holds the moment you realize you are happy; it offers harbor to the horror of losing something or someone irreplaceable.

It is the only door there ever is. Right here. Right now.

Be here. See your dear heart’s eyes. See sparrow hawks riding fierce updrafts of wind. See the blood and marrow of life.

There is no other moment in which to live.

© 2016  Shavawn M. Berry All rights reserved

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