Tuesday, March 3, 2009


March 3, 2009 horizon

Distance. Distance is the key to seeing a horizon. Where I grew up it was hard to get a visual on distance. Too many hills and trees got in the way, so that when the sun set, it just sort of disappeared behind the hillsides, daylight sinking into the woods. In a matter of minutes the hairs on your arms could stand up straight with the humid chill of the dropping temperature. Cold and wet is so much colder than cold and dry. Same with warmth. Hot summer days in Pennsylvania could be tasted. Walking through the heavy brush under the eternal trees that hung over each other like snakes in a pit, you could open your mouth and chew on a chunk of air. It tasted green and muddy and sweet.
Where I live now there is need for lotion. For lip ointments and sesame oils and conditioning shampoo. When Dave decided to take the job in Salt Lake City we looked at every available house in our price range north of the city. We kept going until we reached this neighborhood in Farmington where the car strained to climb the hill and trees lined both sides of the road. I took a deep easy breath when we drove into our neighborhood. This would work, we thought, and so it did. And so it does.
Every time I drive down that hill out of our neighborhood I look out over the horizon. It stuns me still, nearly every time. I set my eyes in the sweet spot where I can see the road in a responsible driver sort of way, but still seek the horizon. I find the out there, the way out there over the lake; past the mountains to the west and on into eternity. Every evening God sets His easel out there and mixes umber with crimson, dips it in amber and gold, then sweeps His gloriously large brush over an azure wash. It swirls and runs, evolves and deepens with the elements until, finally, He covers it all with a ripe, wet indigo and lets it rest until morning. Some nights, according to His good pleasure, he will fill a stiff, short bristled brush with silver and flick it, shimmering, over the night sky.
Horizons need distance to be seen. Space and vision. I pity the poor soul whose eyes are set on the goal, so sternly and absolutely that he fails to look up at the horizon. “Here”, God says, “Here you go. I’m here now, see? Everything will be just fine.” Stock markets crash; fear rears its head, jobs are lost and panic sets in. We roll our shoulders in over our hearts and forget to look up; to look out. All we see is a double yellow line in the road, when up and out in front of us is a brand new creation every single hour of every single evening, whispering hope; regardless of the tragedies of the day or the pleasures of the flesh. Every single day, out there on the horizon. Look up.


  1. Beautiful. I am looking up today.

  2. I almost forgot to go get Brooklyn from Gymnastics I was so encompassed by your writing. Who would have though Lent would be such a bad influence. :)

  3. Next time you position yourself on that road, looking out at the beautiful horizon...come back about a mile and wave at me! I'll be in my front window watching for you! :^D