On my morning run, I came across an empty lot where a church once stood - it was torn down recently, like many other old buildings in Charleston and Mount Pleasant, to make way for the future. So it's an empty lot with three crosses standing out front, representing Calvary. About 30 strides later, there was a chain link fence gate, wide open, with a sign that said 'Enter Here.' This made me laugh, it seemed like a visual pun from God - which made me think about poetry and the importance of slowing down. Normally on a run like this, I'd be counting under my breath, checking my average pace on the Garmin, and straining to do more mileage, faster. But I slowed down on Saturday because I am starting back with running and had begun to develop shin splints - so my cadence was leisurely and I was open to the world around me.
I continued the run, still thinking about that open gate, when I saw an elderly woman walking toward me on the side walk. As she drew closer, we said hello to one another and I saw that her white t-shirt had an ironed-on photograph of a little boy, above his face were the words 'Rest in Peace.' This made me think about juxtaposition and irony, age and mortality.
Less than a half mile later, I ran past a little gas station that was yawning to life in those dawn hours. Music was blaring from outdoor speakers. The song playing was, 'All I Need is a Miracle.'
Walls and blinders are omnipresent in modern life - iPhones, cubicle walls, gated communities, headphones, and passwords. The day is a process of constant blocking to avoid the steady hum and whir of the outside world. But what if we chose moments to let the universe communicate with us?