This Little Light of Mine

I’m going to let it shine.

This Little Light of Mine by Measha Brueggergosman and the Nova Scotia Mass Choir from DEEP Inc. on Vimeo.

Some may remember this song from Sunday School. Long gone are my days of church-going, but still lingering in my heart are some of those old songs and my exploration–thanks to Dad–of gospel music, especially the kind of music we heard in a church down in inner-city Chicago that we used to tutor at. I remember Dad said he had more fun at that church than the white suburban “sterile” church, and partly it was because of the music.

Last night on the way home–after work we go to dinner once a week, and last night meant red wine and chile relleno–the sky was already turning twilight, and CBC Radio had a special on Measha Brueggergosman, an opera singer who did a gospel album with the Nova Scotia Mass Choir. This song came on the air, and I immediately turned it up and said, “This is the kind of song that used to make Dad snap his fingers and dance around.” In that instance I looked to the sky and saw flocks of crows head toward their rookery, and a sliver of moon backdropped their flight. In that precise moment, everything was right with the world. Everything was just right. I don’t know if it was such a vivid memory of Dad–even the year before his death, he had a good moment and was wearing a beret someone had given to him and a lively gospel song came on the radio and he started snapping his fingers and bouncing around the kitchen. Or maybe it was the way the moon looked and the way the dark crow flight silhouetted against a deep lavender sky. Maybe it was just that moment with my husband, after a nice conversation and then a trip to the nearby market to get a few things for making a pasta sauce later when we got home, which we worked on together–and man, is that going to be tasty tonight. Or maybe it was everything all at once, coming together. That moment will go down into history as one of the finer moments in my life and it reminded me, too, that no time is linear–that moments of appreciation are very connected to other random moments in one’s life, which just, according to probably many variables, come together in a great memory that is as fleeting as any other moment.

Update: Found a photo of Dad on that day:

This little light of mine. I’m going to make it shine. It’s a phrasing that everyone, religious or not, can sing. We weather dark times together, eyes opened to where justice and equality and caring need to shine–across the planet. Sometimes I get so full of love I cannot help it. I felt bursting with being alive when I heard that song and thought of all the people with lights that shine, who make a difference in this world. Today I did a lunch hike again, and despite the fact I had my work clothes on (luckily some good shoes, a sleeveless shirt due to the heat, and some comfy pants), I even ran some. First running since June. I could feel that it was still easy–and I could sustain it.

Enjoy some photos from today’s trail.

Creek at end of trail
Creek heading downstream





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