Absorbing times of intense beauty. It was so beautiful that if it was a painting it would have been on velvet. My friend David and I were watching the sun set over Washington, D.C., from a stone-clad tower at the National Cathedral. The bright tangerine rays backlit the clouds in such a way that the entire scene looked surreal, much like a painting on velvet. In silence we watched as the bright orange ball descended into the horizon, cloaking Washington in darkness.
When I am around such beauty it almost seems more than I can handle. I find myself wanting to fast forward through the experience. Weeks later, I mentioned this to another friend, who quoted a line from the award-winning film American Beauty. Kevin Spacey’s character, Lester Burnham, delivers it:
“But it’s hard to stay mad when there is so much beauty in the world. Sometimes I feel like I’m seeing it all at once and it’s too much. My heart fills up like a balloon that is about to burst and then I remember to relax and stop trying to hold on to it and then it flows through me like rain and I can’t feel anything but gratitude for every single moment of my stupid little life. You have no idea what I am talking about. I am sure. But don’t you worry, you will some day.”