730 BELLS Ignorant of the Night.

I am ignorant of the night. In the city where I lived for twenty-three years, it dangerous to wander in the night. And when I visited the country, the Farm in the Methow Valley, it was too wild to wander at night all alone on a hundred acres. 

But Goldilocks found the middle chair that was “just right.” So here on our three acres on the Nisqually River, I’ve found a safe place to walk alone at night. And I’ve discovered so much. Nights are as different from each other as days—some serene, some brooding, some tumultuous. Best of all, nights here are quiet of human noise. Only wind in the trees, the humming river, the croaking frogs, the singing stars. Reflection and meditation come easily.

I used to go to bed thinking of everything I didn’t get done. My night walks have changed that, a pause button to the day's busyness. Now I have a sense of space, of waiting, even promise. Just as light has its negative qualities—drought, burning, blinding—so darkness has its positive qualities.

After one week of night walks, I dreamed I met a wild black horse in the night. I threw my arm around its neck and we strode away, side by side, into the night. 

Last night when I went to bed, I looked at the fabric serving as a temporary window curtain. A dear friend brought to to me from Japan some thirty years ago. A dark crane flies up, silhouetted against light coming from outside. A dark crane ascending into the night.

Where will they led me, the dark crane and the black horse?

For the first time, I am learning to hear bells in the night.

7:30 BELLS Posts run every Tuesday.