Crossing the stillness

aa 004It is dark as we walk down the lane, the small dog and I, yet a bird is singing, opening the gates of dawn with a joyful song, heralding the day without yet knowing what it will bring. For now it sings alone, a brave voice in the darkness, but soon others will join with it. The song is no more than a communication with a mate or a defence of territory, or so they tell us, but to me it speaks of something deeper. It sounds like trust in whatever the morning might unfold, confidence in the rightness of life, facing the blank canvas of the day with a wild joy. It is almost as if the birds sing their symphony at dawn to remind us of that. As if the presence of their song in the world brings us closer to the divine simply by existing. You get strange thoughts in the stillness.

14 Derbyshire (1)As the sky begins to show that first, creeping edge of light, half seen through the early mist, the air is opalescent; an unearthly glow that seems magical enough to walk on, a trail through the portals of time and place that could lead you anywhere and anywhen; a pathway to possibilities unknown. I wonder where it would lead if I followed the winding plumes of mist, dancing with the mistwraiths over the fields, laughing with the spirits of the trees as they shake their fading summer garments in the breath of morning, tinged now with the first golden flames of autumn.

14 Derbyshire (14)There is that faint tang of woodsmoke in the air now, fires are being lit at night and the fragrance lingers still beneath the trees. The earth has that rich, damp smell that I love and Ani runs, nose to the ground, exploring the scents of the night. The damp bark of a fallen tree provides a place to sit and watch her play. I should have the camera, but the morning is enough and I do not have the skill to capture her shadowy form amongst the deeper shadows of the wood. I wonder if the tree knows how much life it harbours still, fallen though it is? So many mosses and beetles, so many birds will feed here when I leave. I feel as if I could sink into the tree, be absorbed into its being as it is being absorbed into the earth.

14 Derbyshire (18)We wander back through the tunnel of trees towards the dawn and turn down the lane as the sun begins to rise, back towards the cares and duties of the mundane world and away from the misty morning stillness. I wonder which is the greater reality and where lies the demarcation between the two? There is no stile, no kissing gate to mark the crossing between the wonderland behind and the everyday world ahead and yet, there is a numinous border where the weight of care falls from tired shoulders as you cross and, on the return, the knapsack is once again hefted into place. Perhaps that crossing point lies only within, and perhaps we carry it with us and could cross any time we choose, and erasing the border feel that the gateway to a numinous dawn les within. Perhaps that is what the birds are telling us when they sing the night into morning.

About Sue Vincent

Sue Vincent is a Yorkshire-born writer and one of the Directors of The Silent Eye, a modern Mystery School. She writes alone and with Stuart France, exploring ancient myths, the mysterious landscape of Albion and the inner journey of the soul. Find out more at France and Vincent. She is owned by a small dog who also blogs. Follow her at and on Twitter @SCVincent. Find her books on Goodreads and follow her on Amazon worldwide to find out about new releases and offers. Email:
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50 Responses to Crossing the stillness

  1. Pingback: Crossing the stillness – The Militant Negro™

  2. Stillness evokes many thoughts. Thank you for sharing!


  3. jenanita01 says:

    I like to imagine that the first blackbird is calling us all to wake up and enjoy the morning… but the song he sings at the end of the day is my favourite. Sad somehow, but beautiful…


  4. Woebegone but Hopeful says:

    A beautiful journey made so evocative through descriptive images and deep breath-taking thoughts.
    Thanks for the share


  5. Jennie says:

    A glorious read, Sue. Thank you.


  6. A beautiful evocation of the arrival of dawn, and of autumn. It occurs to me that the border you speak of is the one between the natural world and the one we’ve created. Being aware of it is part of being human. Birds don’t experience that crossing; they are always in nature. Thanks for observing and describing!


  7. Reblogged this on Joyce's Treasures of Encouragments and commented:
    Creation is so flawless and beautiful. Be still and see the hands of the creator. Thanks for sharing.

    Liked by 1 person

  8. A lot to ponder on there, Sue. I love the transition from night to morning, so peaceful and still, and so full of promise 🙂


  9. Eliza Waters says:

    Beautiful thoughts and photos, Sue – you’ve captured the stillness of dawn so well.


  10. You’re right! Each day is a day of promise, of hope, of possibilities.


  11. dgkaye says:

    The stillness certainly awakens the imagination Sue and you’ve expressed yourself beautifully. ❤

    Liked by 1 person

  12. Widdershins says:

    Reminds me of that Cat Stevens song, (back when he was Cat Stevens) Morning has Broken. 😀


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  25. Reblogged this on The Reluctant Poet and commented:
    Please come and enjoy Sue’s beautiful and inspiring piece – CROSSING THE STILLNESS! Sue’s words reach and move you.
    This piece holds a special place in my heart because it was the seed of inspiration for my – THE GREETING PLACE. Check out Sue’s blog and Archive!


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