There are thousands of patterns I’ve never seen: the way stars arrange themselves over Asia, the way currents flow in rivers in a rain forest, the way sunlight positions itself on icy cliffs at sunset . I could prepare a long list of the marvels of order and precision that I have missed.  Of course, I could instead spend that time listing the marvelous patterns I have been lucky enough to witness. Have they all been grand and glorious, like mountain sunrises? No, but they’ve all been miraculous, from the dust that is just now lined up beside me on my desk in appealing designs, to the way wind whips tree branches around in systematic ways, to the two leaves that just fluttered past the window with neatness and precision. 

And then there is this well-organized miracle, the one we saw on the Mystic River during our walk this morning – eleven Canada geese floating in a formation that’s perfect for them.

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(Bill M., 87, Blessings, CT)

Bill loves telling Doris at McQuades

about the formations he sees in life.

While she’s preparing

unsalted turkey slices for him,

he praises the peaceful configuration

of meats and cheeses in the case,

and the way the patterns

on the store’s floor

flow together so smoothly.

When she says,

“Anything else for you, Bill?”

he says the way her words

are positioned when she speaks

is beyond beautiful.

As he says goodbye to Doris,

he guesses the moments of her life

are aligned as flawlessly

as the stars

above his  shipshape town

of Blessings.  

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