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Dust: A Gift from the Breathing Universe

To continue with my new ritual of expressing gratitude every morning for something I would normally ignore or take for granted (one way to mark this extraordinary time), this morning I am deeply thankful for dust. Yes, it makes me sneeze and when it’s visible on surfaces in my house, it rouses an old, primitive guilt which stems from being raised by a mother who saw dust as the enemy (it was a ‘50’s thing). But today I recognize that dust is evidence of the breathing universe, of the exhaling plants, and, yes, probably of the degenerating substances all around us, what we lazily label as pollution, and it is also evidence of life and how nothing stays the same. That is such a welcome awareness right now. I’m fond of the notion that this virus is one tool the earth is using to heal herself. We wouldn’t do it, so she got radical and forced us to get the cars off the road and the planes out of the air. Dust is, perhaps, one of her far gentler tools, and I am thankful for it this morning.


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© 2020 by Deborah Nedelman