In a moment a wisp of incense smoke curled into the ray of April sunshine that slanted through the window. I sat in open-eyed meditation in the zendo (meditation hall) after six days and 60 plus hours of sitting practice of a nine-day silent retreat. How lovely. How far from ordinary. How unlike anything I’d ever seen before. Until I watched this curling flow of smoke fed from the incense stick, I didn’t know that smoke could be an award-winning dance performance; a bank of clouds on a summer day; a beautiful work of art if frozen for a moment. Since I was transfixed, without protection from this raw beauty, I could only breathe and stare.  I travelled along with the dancing array of pattern through a moment in time. Except for the smoke, there was nothing.