Holding the steaming cup in both hands, I walk in mindful meditation to the table, careful not to spill a single dark drop on the cream carpet. I share my first sip of java with millions of my neighbors across barriers of geography, culture, and time as in unison we welcome a new day. Some will still be in their bathrobes, some already at work. Some will be outside by a fire, others looking out from a twelfth-floor balcony. Parents will pour their coffee into travel mugs while the minivan warms up in the driveway. Salesmen will adjust their ties while the coffee pot sputters in a hotel room. Painters will set their cups by a palette of colors. And I will pause by my window.
For many this morning practice is solitary and quiet. Yet it is also a communal ritual because even alone, we savor a shared moment of being exactly where we want to be. As we acknowledge the communion, it is so. Whatever tasks will fill the arch of our days, we sigh together as we take a tenuous first sip, easing through the threshold of wakefulness.
With eyes closed and lips warmed
I give thanks for this moment of indulgence
luxuriating in my first sip.
I imagine a circle of unaware friends
scattered worldwide and even next door
in unison savoring this pleasure.
I am grateful to share this pulse of connection
and envision our spirits in a great cosmic web
rising like swirls of steam from our hearts
as together we awaken to taste a new day.
Special thanks go out to the participants of the Writing 201 workshop who offered their collective wisdom to help me craft this post. This piece was inspired by an essay on mindfulness by David Cain called How to Sit in a Chair and Drink Tea as well as the delightful poem by Billy Collins, Eastern Standard Time from The Trouble with Poetry. I hope you have a chance to enjoy one or both as you drink your morning coffee.