Today I rendezvoused with a friend at 7 a.m. at Bread Craft, a small bakery downtown. We sipped Silver Needle tea, ate a cranberry scone, and let our thoughts slip out, gently, as the day dawned.

I described to her a book I’m reading, The Comedy of Redemption by Ralph Wood. Wood writes that, according to the Christian Gospel, the story of the universe ultimately is a comedy rather than a tragedy. Without a doubt, the story of humankind contains pain, suffering and evil, of great intensity, but the final destiny is will be one of joy. The final scene of the play will not be set in a wasteland of devastation. Instead, the Christian narrative leads to celebration and a great feast in paradise. At the end there is a homecoming – the children of God come to dwell with him forever, and he wipes away all their tears. All creation will sing of the glory of God. And we will laugh.

Later today, after finishing my last violin lesson, I locked the door and stepped outside. The sky circled above me – rose, gray-blue and immense. Clouds stood in the expanse like continents on the face of the earth. The ridges at the horizon looked like toys beside a mountain of sky. I leaned back against my car, my eyes traveling up, down, and across.  I felt the thrill of this larger presence. And I thought of the all-encompassing story, of which my small life is a part. What if it really turns to be a comedy?

Now it is late. I sit in the narrow yellow room on the side of the house. I can hear the clatter of the train nearby. The ground trembles. The whistle echoes deep and dissonant in the night.

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