in the shadow of a bee's wings

The little things make such a difference. For me, this morning, it was a tiny bouquet of flowers from my garden, set between the bathroom taps. Other times, it might be the texture of a smile, or the bumble bee clinging to a swaying flower, or arranging an ordinary meal on the plate so it looks beautiful. Little things which have, at their heart, everything.

When I'm writing a story, I am drawn to such little things. To me, they are the most interesting elements of a story and its characters. For example, the way a man touches the space near a woman, when he thinks she can not see him; the emotions that such a small and wordless gesture conveys ... here is the heart of his private story.

As readers, we are privileged to see into the hidden mental spaces of characters, where even they themselves can not see, much of the time. What makes a story powerful is when those hidden spaces are revealed to be much the same as our own. No matter whether the character is a dragon-hunter or a housekeeper, we can relate to their inner experiences, be they in relation to the killing of monsters or trying a new recipe.

It's the same in real life, with real people. We don't usually notice or comprehend the small gestures that suggest someone's untold story (although those of us who are empathic notice them too often for our own comfort.) And so it's not always easy to connect with strangers or understand their choices. Imagine if we approached real people the same way we do characters in a book - understanding they are disguised by different layers of narrative, and beneath all of that is someone we could ultimately relate to if we had their heart's true story.

And it's the same with daily living, at least it is for me. Life is richer, more meaningful, more sacred, when I open my heart to the little things.

All of which sounds very preachy, but it's honestly what I was thinking today as I worked my way around a bumblebee to gather flowers ... a bumblebee, after months with no bees here at all ... and felt the holy beauty, the great and gorgeous magic, in such a small thing.



roses of inspiration

9 comments:

  1. Beautiful! I agree. Little things often have great value. Turning my attention to them in melancholic moments has been a healing balm because noticing the blessings of small things touches my heart and lifts my spirit to a place gratitude.

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  2. Beautiful! I agree. Little things often have great value. Turning my attention to them in melancholic moments has been a healing balm because noticing the blessings of small things touches my heart and lifts my spirit to a place gratitude.

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  3. I've just finished reading The Reality Gap by Russ Harris on using Acceptance and Commitment Therapy. Your post mirrors what he says but rather more beautifully :)

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  4. Your views, are always lovely. And give more to be contemplated, after reading them...

    Gentle hugs,
    Tessa

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  5. A lovely post contemplating the little things that bring such joy.

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  6. "Little things which have, at their heart, everything."
    beautifully expressed.

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  7. i love your observation that "We don't usually notice or comprehend the small gestures that suggest someone's untold story (although those of us who are empathic notice them too often for our own comfort.)"

    very true. and as an empathic person, also true. and oh so true (and holy, holy) are the small things. all the magic of life flutters in the wings of a bumblebee, in the very grains of pollen on the legs and in the chalices of plants that they visit...

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  8. Good morning, sweet friend! Please forgive me for just now visiting you....last week was rather busy :) Your posts are always so refreshing and a blessing to my heart.

    Thank you, dear one, for sharing with Roses of Inspiration - I hope you're able to join us again this week. Hugs!

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