At 6:45 a.m., the world is impossibly quiet. Even the birds whisper in half chirps and trilling wings, unwilling to break the feather-light spell which separates the mad rush from this magic. The sun is dressed to play the enchantress this morning, her translucent robes draped over rooftops and church towers, her shining elixirs tipped into valleys and over windowsills, and I can’t see the sky for all her radiance. The silence and light ground my soul to its ethereal roots.
By 7:45, the city will have yawned, turned over once or twice, and finally tossed off the translucence like a rumpled sheet. The air will hum and growl, sizzle with electric charge, whoosh out of the way as trains and traffic and alarm-harried people claim the morning for industry. The sun will be tucked up tightly and lost in the larger sphere of blue. Bells will more clang than chime, drowning out birdsong for a resounding second, and car horns will follow suit. I’ll begin checking lists, herding clothes into the washer, fielding the infinite curiosity of preschoolers, and working with one eye on the calendar and one eye on the clock. Stopping to hear the silence or squint into sunlight would seem foolish at best.
But here, in the radiant hush of 6:45, it is still possible to believe in mercies renewed every morning, and so this is where I start.