I find myself thinking a lot these days of this wonderful picture book I recently came across called Tiny, Perfect Things by M.H. Clark. It does what really good children’s books do in the way it captures something that isn’t just important for young folks but is also key for those who, like me, are much older.
I don’t want to spoil it for you but the book is basically an exploration of the endless joys that exist in the world. The story is a reminder of the fact that such things are always there, and that finding them is only a matter of looking, of really being able to see the beauty in front of us.
Last night, I was thinking of this while working on my computer. I looked up and saw my slumbering pup. He had placed a few of his toys on a pillow on the floor before laying his head on that same pillow and going to sleep. It was so sweet, I could have cried.
And then I started thinking of the tiny, perfect things I know. The purple underside of green clover on a forest floor; the delicate, pink, and papery petals of primroses in the spring; the fine grains of sand that will stick to the edges of a shell picked off a beach wet with the tide; the dancing orange light of a candle’s flame; the sharp bark of laughter when a friend is caught by surprise.
It’s all a way, it seems to me, of making sure we stay tied into the world that we’re in, rather than only getting sucked into the world we’re told must exist. It’s all a practice of mindfulness. Yet it’s more than that too: I suspect that noticing such details might be the antidote to overwhelm, and the place where we remember that which is most important in life.
It’s Friday morning in my corner of the world, and I’m giving myself a challenge: how many tiny, perfect things can I find today? How many, wherever you are, can you see?