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If I sit on the porch and look out on the morning,
It is the dust I first see on the window panes,
Smudged here and there where my hand has brushed it
And speckled where condensation has dried.

I could stop here and think about cleaning,
About making the moment better next time.
Or I might grasp the obvious metaphor
And scrub away at my own grimy soul,

But I would rather watch the tiny bug
Crawling up the glass
And on past him to the white butterfly,
Wandering along the lacy arms

Of that fern who planted herself beside the walkway,
The naughty one who wants so much
To throw her fronds across the path,
where they nuzzle my legs,
Coming and going,
Like the ownerless cat
Who stops sometimes in her busy day to chat.

And all the time birds are chirping
And cawing and singing snatches of song
According to their kind,
As they flutter or swoop or
Quietly sit watching the world
With their restless eyes.

The dirt will be there as it always is,
The work will be there too,
The hunger also and the lure of pleasure,
But just now, on a bright morning,
While I have a moment,
I’ll smile and give a little credit to the Creator
For a nice bit of work.

Jack Hickman lives in Alameda, California, where he is an elder at Alameda Christian Reformed Church.

Photo: Unsplash