Here's a chapter from my new book, In Duet with God - The Story of a Lifelong Friendship. As you read, you'll feel the spirit of the story. It's about an unusual person named Flora, who entered my life when I was eight. The book reveals the transformation she inspired. I hope you enjoy it!
Flora’s favorite Catholic church is located a short distance from Penn Station. Walking the five blocks from Flora’s residence to church, we’d pass fast-food restaurants, shoe stores, and café’s. When we entered the sanctuary, the silent, vaulted space provided a welcomed relief from the noise outside.
Indeed, the mid-town area of New York City near Penn Station is especially congested. Under the sidewalk, the subways rumble uptown and down. Commuters hurry frantically, trying to catch trains, sometimes pulling heavy suitcases. Skyscrapers, dozens of stories high, exert an imposing weight on the bustle below.
One afternoon, Flora and I went together to Mass. We made our way, trying to avoid the multitudes of people coming towards us, many of them distracted as they chatted on cell phones. Suddenly Flora disappeared. I looked around in panic and feared the worst. What could have happened?! Out of the corner of my eye, I glimpsed Flora kneeling on the sidewalk. Was she okay? Her small body was bent low to the ground as dozens of people rushed by.
Upon a closer look, I saw that Flora was contemplating the subway grates. What was she doing, I wondered? There, growing tentatively amidst the interlocking mesh, were tiny flowers. Kneeling in the middle of the sidewalk, Flora was talking to them!
“How beautiful you are,” she said happily. “Take good care, okay my sweets?” With each word of joy, the flowers seemed to grow brighter, to lift themselves a little, as if they were enlivened by Flora’s love.
I thought, They’re talking back to her!
Amidst the cacophony, Flora spoke sweetly to the blossoms, her presence creating a perfect stillness. It was like a movie, when the camera zooms in on one detail and everything else falls away. I watched Flora. I mused, she is so connected to life. Every living thing is precious. As she lifted herself slowly from the sidewalk, I thought, Flora really is one of a kind. She’s very small, but she’s very big.
You can read more excerpts, watch a trailer, and order pre-publication copies at my website
(c) 2014 Jessica Roemischer All Rights Reserved, In Duet with God(R)