Knocks Me Off My Feet!

          There’s somethin ’bout your love / That makes me weak and knocks me off my feet

Dancing around the breakfast table with Henry this morning, stereo full blast, listening to Stevie Wonder’s “Knocks Me Off My Feet.” Pure happiness for 4 minutes 33 seconds.

When Stevie Wonder in the early 1970s wrote the 17 pieces that comprise “Songs in the Key of Life” he tapped into some deep and amazing wellspring that still wakes me up and blows me away. Every time I listen.

Call it the Spirit of God (listen to “As,” Vol. II, track 6) or the Spirit of Life savoring and celebrating itself coming into birth (“Isn’t She Lovely?,” Vol. II, track 1), the joy Stevie gives away in his music is infectious.

Consider the faces of the crowd and his fellow musicians on stage who cannot help but smile and join with him in singing the chorus. Why? Could it be because the desire to love and be loved, and to savor the beautiful fruits of love – the intimacy and vulnerability of Life itself, Togetherness, Wonder, the Joy and spontaneity and sheer mystery of children – are so undeniably universal?

Stevie reaches deep into the deepest wellspring and gives thanks for the primordial Love that keeps the world centered on its axis, even (especially) when the world seems to be spinning out of control. (Read: Syria.) And he gives me, singing full throttle with Henry, a voice for saying thanks be to God in spite of it all at the beginning of a brand new day.

The breeze is cool this morning, the birds are waking up, and the eastern sun is rising over the treetops and the houses of my neighbors. It shines through stained glass and splinters into a thousand particles of orange-yellow light across my shoulder.

With thanks for Henry and Sophia and Grace and kids everywhere with their teachers who began a new school year this week. Remembering the hidden children everywhere and all around us who don’t enjoy such promise and possibility. (Listen to “Village Ghetto Land,” Vol. I, track 3, and see Anna’s previous post, “What About My People?”)

For Kinley, the newborn (grand)daughter of friends across the street and newest addition to our neighborhood – welcome!!!  For Isaiah, my wise and beautiful teenage son in the dance of friendship and discovery that marks these precious days of young adulthood.

And for Lauri, whose love for me and fearless embrace of life fills me with wonder each day, and keeps my world turning on its axis…

We lay beneath the stars under a lover’s tree
That’s seen through the eyes of my mind
I reach out for the part of me that lives in you
That only our two hearts can find

I don’t wanna bore you with it
Oh but I love you, I love you, I love you
I don’t wanna bore you with it
Oh but I love you, I love you, I love you

More and more

With my Dad and brother John, who is to blame for many things in my childhood. (Including getting me hooked on Stevie Wonder’s music.)

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