Limn, a definition

to depict or describe in paint or words

to suffuse or highlight something with bright color or light

Earth's crammed with heaven,
And every common bush afire with God,
But only he who sees takes off his shoes;
The rest sit ‘round and pluck blackberries.

Elizabeth Barrett Browning

I saw the moon limned on a stone floor one night.

I was four years old …

… the fifth of six children.

We lived in India, where my parents served as missionaries for three years. We children were frequently hungry. Maybe the food was too spicy or maybe we were picky or maybe there just wasn’t enough.

That night, my older siblings stole downstairs for bread.

I followed them and stood still as stone at the foot of the stairs.

Something bright shone into the window.

At first, I thought it was a thief with a flashlight, peering inside. Dad would warn us of “Hankyman” — his word for a thief/robber/ne’er-do-well. I thought it was Hankyman.

I stood, frozen, until my eyes adjusted and I saw it was moonlight.

Moonlight, floating before me on the floor, so bright.

This was mystery. It was magic. It was a limning of the ordinary.

Such generous suffusion is everywhere.

I am glad you are here

Really, thank you …

… for visiting, for stopping by.

The world is a busy place and we are busy people.

But sometimes it takes a conscious slowing down to catch a glimpse of mystery, to stand in silent wonder, or just to take a breath.

Here, with Limning the Ordinary, I hope to offer such a space …

… sometimes with a few words, maybe a poem.

Other times, with a longer narrative.

There will be photos.

And (if I stick with my goals and improve in the craft), maybe some sketches or paintings down the line.

I hope you will find hope, a little respite, a depiction of light …

… a limning of the ordinary.

I won’t beg you to subscribe …

… but I would be honored if you choose to do so.

May your day be suffused with grace.

Subscribe to Limning the Ordinary

Limn: to depict or describe in painting or words; to suffuse with color or light. The hope of this publication is to infuse ordinary days with color, grace, and light.


Bonita Jewel

Bonita Jewel visited India at 16 and stayed 11 years. Now in California with her husband and three kids, Bonita holds an MFA in Creative Writing. A freelance editor for 13 years, she authors Limning the Ordinary and coaches writers.