The first hint I had that the lilacs were blooming was the fragrance that greeted me when I pulled into the driveway and stepped out of the car. And I knew right where to go to see the blooms, the sight reminding me of a line by Rainer Maria Rilke that I recently discovered:
Everything is blooming most recklessly; if it were voices instead of colors, there would be an unbelievable shrieking into the heart of the night.
Sitting in 39K at 38,000 feet somewhere over the Atlantic, chasing the sun across the globe, gradually losing this race hour by hour, ultimately losing the light off Newfoundland.
No sight of the ocean, rather a sea of clouds below, gray in the dips, the upper reaches still illuminated by the sun. Out of London, I witness the contrails being formed by the jet engine, a sight I’ve seen from the ground so many times but never from the vantage point of a window seat behind the engine.
Inside the cabin, the passengers are viewing movies, listening to music, reading. Outside is a world where we should not be, where we would not survive unprotected, -50° F, moving at 550 miles-per-hour over the earth.
Two disparate environments separated by a few inches of metal. Contemplating the contrast between inside and outside, I sense transcendence. That’s why I love to fly.