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QUINTESSENCE

Handprint

“To will what God wills is the only Science that gives us rest.”
- Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

I am one who believes in the dance between science and chaos. In that dance exists the spark of magic. Uncertain, I look for the handprint of destiny in life. And while patterns can be seen in retrospect, forks in the road loom clear only once we’ve taken new direction. It doesn’t always appear to be a preordained plan we are following. Rather, it feels more as though we uncover the path; building a stairway across space even as we take the next step into an empty dark we are not certain we trust.

There is a simple truth in Longfellow’s words – inner peace is essentially found within surrender to an ultimate power we cannot define nor commune well with, let alone identify or prove. While we seek to master the laws of science and take security in the material laws of the universe, life in its entirety is mystery undefined. Whatever creation is, creation wills. Is this destiny? I don’t know. Free will? That would account for our choices and refusals. Perhaps chaos and a corner pocket shot of stardust. I do sense that the science that we speak of, Longfellow and I, is big enough to define itself as it sees fit. While I may need to discover magic and serendipity, another person might need the rule of reason, or perhaps a sense of preordained fate, the mystery of surrender. We are all quite possibly right.

As I stand in the doorway between who I have been for most of my adult life - woman, partner, mother, writer – I look to the stars. There is a star out there for each of us. A point of light that reminds us the distance we’ve come, and how limitless our possibilities might be. In tonight's cloudless sky, a cerulean midnight fluted with deep purple, a white crescent moon hangs above the birch trees. A moon as improbable as a prop, a Matisse cutout pinned above a dark and curtained theatre. The moon...a planet captive in our orbit, catalogued by our most knowledgeable sciences. Humans have reached the gray rock on rocket ships. But to me that luminescent crescent is a symbol of the improbable, the mystery that makes every moment of life a question mark. The moon and I have so much in common - we exist, we have no idea why.
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