Something is happening but I can’t see what it is, because the day sky is an impenetrable scattering of color, and the night sky is too deep to see the bottom. The moon isn’t a reliable reference either, because it’s just one point, and clearly an outlier. You can’t leverage it at all. Though the particulars are being worked out, I still take comfort in this vague arrival– in its presence– whatever it is.
I should elaborate on my topic, though, and not be so coy.
I know what it is.
The sea level is rising they say, but they’re not really talking about the sea of peace. That’s rising, too. Some days I can barely touch the bottom and I wobble around on my tip toes, hopping once in a while in ephemeral weightlessness so the swells rolling in from the center of our galaxy don’t smack into my face. I can get caught in this thoughtless rhythm. Hopping, floating, touching down. One-two-three, one-two-three. I find myself doing these open water plies. You don’t need a bar if your being held by all directions. One-two-three, one-two-three… I’m not even worried that the dining room table is afloat now, drifting off into the distance, leaving a trail of coffee mugs and papers in its wake. Some gulls have already claimed it, and are sharing space with the neighbor’s yawning cat. They’re all just enjoying the ride.
This is what I mean.
I like to imagine when Jesus said, “My peace, I give to you.” It’s like second hand smoke from someone in the corner burning down one of those red pills Morpheus gave Neo. You’re breathing it in, like it or not. Jesus says it like he’s got a case full of promotional materials in the trunk of his car– little wood carvings he made. A bear, a turtle, a man. Just say the word, and he’ll go get you one. If I get too worked up, I come back to that moment. To the offer. I usually look up to find him standing there, looking back at me. Waiting.
It takes time for the seas to fill up.
It’s not like the sky starts singing hymns and a spotlight follows you around. At work the other day I realized I’ve traded in my office chair for an inner tube. The desk bobs around a little, and if I have visitors to my little cube I jack it up on blocks so it looks normal. I paddle around to meetings and nobody notices. You can hide a secondhand battleship in plain sight if it’s just another example of you being you, and me being me. It’s not even inconvenient. The clock rolls around, and I do all the same stuff. Maybe more of it. There’s that part that wants to sit me down periodically for The Talk. Where’s this all going? Let’s extrapolate what’s happening here so we can avoid a disaster. Any disaster. Let’s find one, and avoid it. At this rate all the offices will be flooded up to the ceiling in a decade, and then what…?
And Jesus is just waiting. Already resurrected. Making these little wood carvings. Do I want the porpoise carving or the angel?
Do you have a moose back there?
Peace is rising like the sea, little by little, and seeping into the cracks. I don’t have weekend plans. Other than bobbing. Why would you need a plan besides bobbing? It’s like being rocked to sleep, or blown like a kiss across the threshold.
“My peace, I give to you.”
The crickets are whistling Dixie about that moment right now– milking that one note for all its got. Telling the story of it. They’re hanging out on my coffee mugs and those important papers that stick to the surface, and in the brush just a little further inland. We’re all part of it, this sea level rising. It’s gently filling in the land. Burying our importance. Making new layers of sediment in the crust.
I know what it is, even if I can’t see it. Even if the sky is inscrutable.
When I look into the water I just see the bottom. The office carpet. The grocery store linoleum. The dinged up kitchen floor where plates and knives have been raining down for years. The asphalt. They’re all a little distorted because of the waves. Put two and two together, and it’s obvious.
We made it.
Peace is like that. A lackadaisical, delicious certainty that goes on forever. Lazily patching us in.
Jesus gave me two sculptures. The moose– of course– and a hummingbird.
I’d like you to have it.