I sit in the darkness, waiting. It’s just before dawn on the Missouri River Bluff. I revel in the silent stillness, sitting in an old recliner on the porch, awaiting the arrival of a new day…A day untainted by mankind’s dirty fingerprints. Untouched by the clamor and bustle of the world beyond the River. A day that’s fresh from Mother Nature’s bountiful supply.
It is the legacy of country folks.
I am doing what most folks never do. Especially City Dwellers…those unfortunate people. They know nothing about the joys of country living.
They awaken to the wail of sirens and the roar of a garbage truck. It dispels their dreams and ushers them into a new day. The poor saps! They may have a lot of money and may even be “rich” in their own way, but in reality they are poverty stricken.
They never hear the Whippoorwill as he summons the Sun from its bed. They don’t know of the gentle breezes that awaken the slumbering trees. They never hear the twitter of a Titmouse.
They hear nothing but the Tweet and Twitter of their Cyber World. The din of corporate America. The opening and closing of elevator doors. The gossip at the water cooler. The swish of street sweepers and the endless agony of rush hour traffic.
They live in oblivion, and they like it that way, apparently. They seldom venture beyond the confines of their security fences and corporate skylines. They wouldn’t sleep in a tent, or sit by a campfire…Not if you gave them a million bucks and a pink Cadillac, too.
I’m glad that I’m not one of them.
I gaze about me, staring into the pre-dawn darkness. There aren’t many more of these moments in store. This is August. We have few days left when we can dip our toes in the cool silence of a summer’s morn.
A hush covers the land. Only the gentle whisper of a cricket breaks the stillness. Nothing is stirring, not even the breeze. The world holds its breath.
And now…the time has come.
The sound of the Whippoorwill echoes from the dusky darkness. He summons the sun from its hiding place. On cue, the world stirs. The eastern skies begin to lighten. A breeze wanders by, awakening the slumbering trees. They stretch and lift their arms in a primordial dance, swaying and brushing lightly against one another.
A titmouse twitters. He begins his morning song, tentatively at first.. then with more gusto. The world awakens gently on the River Bluff.
I watch the metamorphosis taking place, looking toward the east beyond the river. A faint pink is pushing back the blanket of stars spread across the dark velvet heavens. The stars fade in their brilliance as they are tucked away into hiding one by one–priceless gems too rare to be exposed to the light of day.
Soon they are all gone and the “morning star” takes their place. The sun pushes through the trees with bright fingers to paint splashes of color between the shadows of tree branches.
These are the moments that most of the world will miss. The folks beyond the River.
I stare upwards at the silent shadow of a hawk flitting through the trees. I hear the cheery voice of a squirrel telling the world that he is now awake and the day can officially begin.
I heave a deep sigh. I am at peace. Perfect peace. I lean back in the old recliner.
And then it happens. I lean too far and the old chair tips over backwards. A great crash rends the serenity of the new day. And there I am, lying on my back with my feet in the air, laughing and laughing…Looking up at the morning sky.
It is an appropriate way to look at the world.
Even upside-down, I am more Right-Side-Up than the City Folks!
Of that, I am most certain…