Listening prayer

hardwood_floorOn this gray morning, I travel barefoot across my naked hardwood floor to pray.

Forty calendars ago, in a rainy May, I planted myself in a learning community on a wooded Whidbey Island.

Fritz, the caretaker of the Finnish farmhouse, appeared in the kitchen as though out of the mist. With teabags soaking up the morning, we camped in the living room by fire.

His eyes spoke first, an invitation to be quiet and listen. “What do you hear?”

I heard a streaking lost jet plane overhead, the creaking of a beam, my breathing. This morning, many chapters later, I am home and still waking up.

The fridge purring, a cheap wall heater content to hiss, and my fingers now strumming on God’s forehead.

These and other loud whispers mean I dare not close my eyes to pray.


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