The ring was distinct, the edges were clear. Round in the most normal of ways but specific in its own thickness. The ring was the result of time and the forces that formed it. Like others that had come before, it was natural and obvious in its growth and development, but larger this time. Not exactly a copy, but a continuation of those that had come before. This ring had variations that were the result of the forces that made it, individual and singular.
The one that formed the ring would know of the details and the struggles and the time needed to complete it. And time moved on. The ring would show the evidence of all that was a part of that time but would be silent about it. The evidence would show in a time yet unknown. Many more rings would be formed before that day. The number can matter, but not to each ring. Each is a record of that which went into the form and size. The dryness or lush times that are told. The times of fire and times of cold that endured long past the normal. Each ring would tell a story but not the same one.
The total number of rings will show a pattern, developed over time, but that is a tale that is different than each ring could tell on its own. Interestingly, we do the same. We can tell of the time that a car crash changed us, if only to give us a funny tale of a snowy parking lot. The ring will do the same, but from a different perspective. If we understand the tale as a story of a moment in time, we can see it also in the ring. A moment of time that changed the story, left a mark and a memory. It didn’t kill the tree, it was far too large for that, but left a mark it did.
To know the tone of the bell that rings in your heart is to know the place of peace. To work in the place that is full, and the task is not labor but joy. To find the sound of the ring in the eye of your companions in an undertaking of merit is the stuff of memories for years. To go on a trip with mates that sing in the same manner but with different voices, all needed to complete the song of the journey’s adventures. I have walked into a room and have seen the slow vibrations of a bell that has rung in times past, and yet still vibrates from the action. To meet their eyes is to know that they know of the ring in their ears, and yet also their soul.
I have spoken to them of the ringing of their history, and they knew I knew. Some were afraid, as they were not ready for the story of the ring. Some were content to tell of the actions that made the vibrations. Some were broken and the sound not as it was before. Some will still wait to tell of the day that it happened. That is fine, perhaps another will be the one to hear their music as they play.
The ring of each bell is its own, so is mine. So is yours. We are players in a symphony that needs us. We may be used often and perhaps not but once. It simply is important to play when called upon, and silent when not. There is no control over your tone, it was not made by you. It was made for you. To learn that is to then be free to play. To know that you are part of a larger story is to know that others are called into that story as well. Let them play. From our place it may seem like bad timing and dissonance, but we are not the maestro that organized the arrangement. We are participants, not more than any other, just important to the whole.
You are both at the same time, captured by the last. You are a group of memories that build upon the last. A timeline of that story, as only one tree can be and never changing from that mighty oak or palm. So too, your tone and timbre is distinct as only a bell can ring. Unchanging in size and the tone it makes for ever and on. The sound is made to be heard, if only by the birds with their own sounds returning. The ring of your hand is both. A collector of memories and a singular unchanging shape. Gold or silver, platinum or pewter, it is your companion through time. A reminder by the simple act of looking and thinking of times and sounds. This is your story to tell. Ring as only you can.