I grab half an hour of slow on a grey day in late August, and everything slides into perspective again.

Small, ripe blackberries, abundant but carefully chosen, begin to fill my bag and stain my fingers. Fruit from a thorn bush, essentially. The branches scratch at me as I search out the loveliest ones. I take my time. All the goodness of the sun and rain are compacted in these purple clouds that I hold between finger and thumb.

I can’t resist the delicious metaphor of it all.

As I walk, I pass a family gathering in a garden, voices and good food and laughter reaching my senses over the hedge. I hear the hum of a tractor. I pause to watch the wave of corn in a field.

I reflect as I wander, on past and present and future, on predicaments and blessings: the stuff of life.

The seasonal bundle swinging in one hand is a reminder: there is goodness in the world, always. I resolve to keep seeking it, to take the time to be glad of it, to share it.

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