Gratitude Is Like a Giddy Toddler

(From Within My Illusions)

Have you ever seen something so beautiful 
that you almost couldn’t stand it?

Like it was a heroic effort 
to contain yourself,

to refrain from jumping 
up and down and shouting 

like a giddy toddler
who just tasted ice cream 
for the first time,

and wants to proclaim to everyone 
within earshot
how magnificent it was?

The tips of the clouds at the edge 
of the horizon glowed hot pink

as their condensed matter caught the light 
of the setting sun below.

Billowing waves rolled toward me, 
their gentle undulations punctuated 
by jagged peaks and land lakes
that formed in openings 

where the ground was visible
twenty thousand feet below.

The young man in the row ahead of me 
angled his phone at the window
to take a picture.

And I felt relieved
that I was not the only one 
who noticed.