Monday, April 30, 2012

All that I see and love

The world is filling with greens, and the early blossoms have faded. Iris bloom on the hill, and the lily of the valley. the pesky Japanese honeysuckle-- invasive, greedy vine-- is opening its sweet, sweet smelling blooms. 

A floater broke free in my eye last night. It will likely be fine, but the doctor is observing me, uncertain if there's a need for surgery. But just the thought of blindness, even in one eye, makes me acutely aware of what joy I derive from just looking about in the amazing, living world.

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Foxes and sharing

"Our full humanity is contingent on our hospitality; we can be complete only when we are giving something away; when we sit at the table and pass the peas to the person next to us we see that person in a whole new way." Alice Waters 

Does full humanity hinge also, then, on sharing the world with our fellow creatures? For many years foxes have had a den in the neighboring meadow. They burrowed in where the land suddenly turned vertical, almost like the wall of a surface mine. It's ideal, sheltered by the curve of land, and sunny, running water close by. The horses can't use it, it's way too steep.

Now, since early in the week, two carcasses that look like adult foxes lie on the flat between the den and the little creek. I have seen three kits, and on Thursday evening when I came home at dusk from a meeting, one kit was in the road, terrified-- how easily I could have killed it-- and one a little ahead in the ditch, trotting determinedly forward. They are about the size of cats, their fur still fluffy and babyish. 

Their presence on the road made me suspect those dead animals at the burrow base might be their parents. So yesterday I watched a lot, saw all three kits, saw them come to the mouth of their burrows and look around, lie down, sniff and lick each other, but did not see the tumbling play I have observed before in little foxes.

I have a friend who has a friend who does wildlife rescue. With advice, I planned to feed those babies last evening, since that's their normal time to begin the hunt. When I went there, though-- aahhhhh, sigh of relief!-- there was an adult, and the babies were cavorting about, their every movement telling a story of delight. My poor efforts are not needed today in that way. 

Where is my poor effort needed today? I watch, and learn, and pick up trash as I walk along the road, and tend as best I can. My singular best is a poor thing. It is the sharing of the world in a hospitable way that completes me. And though I am, of course, human, my world is bigger than us. Yours is too, isn't it?

Friday, April 27, 2012

Fly High

For each one struggling, you know that if I had a strong wing to lift you to a safe, sunlight mountain top, I would surely fly to your rescue.

Without dark we can't know light. And light only becomes visible as it reflects from an object. We can only intuitively see the light streaming in sunny, clear air. And what would we see in space where matter particles are so separate? There perhaps we couldn't sense light around us even through our intuition. 

Yet we can know the light exists even there. How small and limited we are in our human ways and knowing.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Hume , the great thinker.

"Reading and sauntering and lounging and dozing, which I call thinking, is my supreme happiness."

"The truth springs from arguments among friends." 

"Beauty is no quality in things themselves: It exists merely in the mind which contemplates them; and each mind perceives a different beauty."

"The life of man is of no greater importance to the universe than that of an oyster."

"He is happy whose circumstances suit his temper but he is more excellent who can suit his temper to any circumstances."
                                ~David Hume

The only way you’re going to face your wild beasts and your shadows is by failure and rejection, by people not loving you, by having to learn how to love [your parents and siblings,] your wife and your children and those who hurt you—the enemies—those who make you aware of your own incapacity to love. 
                                ~Fr. Richard Rohr

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

This Precious Gift

Over the climbing meadows
Where the shallow shadows float
These are the bright gold buttons
On earth's green, windy coat.
       ~A Poet of Calvert Street

Today is just such a day: windy, with shallow shadows from scattered clouds and the occasional large or smaller bird; with bright gold buttons-- dandelion, buttercup-- on the verdant green coat worn by all the meadows. The climbing meadows, and the mares and foals in some, Holsteins in others. All a gift to the senses.

Monday, April 23, 2012

Light in a Rainy Day

A good day depends more on my internal weather than on the natural atmosphere outdoors. In recent months I have stayed mostly silent about my bouts of inner storm and rain. I strive to practice lowly listening, as I walk in the skin that carries my hours, and I continue to hear some non-speaking voice of calm from all the natural world.

In nature, even the dark has light, and of course high-day-clear-air has brilliance. I have come to understand that this blog is my place to mostly collect light, and I return to it more than you ever will. Yet I am ever glad for the sharing.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

Earth Day

Isn't it a little strange? That we, creatures of earth, have so forgotten our unbreakable link to our origins that we need one specific day designated each year to recognize the planet that supports us, to recognize the earth may become as exhausted and beaten down as we.

April 22 also happens to be Bernie's birthday, and we have been celebrating all weekend. One piece of cake left.

Friday, April 20, 2012

Misty Morning

God does not love us because we are good. God loves us because God is good. (Recently quoted in Fr. Richard Rohr's blog.)

God as ALL: all seeing, all knowing, all present, all good. In the presence of such a Presence, love and good have not-humane definitions. But what kind of God do we have if God fits a limited, human image? Humane, after all, comes from the same root as human.

So it is that I know I swim in a Mystery, as lucid and foggy as this morning when the mist in the air is so thick I can not even see to the end of our lane, cannot see the road before me.

The older I get, the more I know I know nothing of Truth.

Thursday, April 19, 2012

What she saw

The kitchen work counters were a little messy, and the eating counter was messy, too. But my friend looked around and saw the view of dogwood trees full of large blossoms outside the east window above the sink and also another dogwood in bloom outside the west-facing window in the door.

How fine to see the beauty, find lovely things through the ordinary, everyday messiness of life.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012


Russian olive blossoms began to scent the air over the weekend. How astonishing that they're wide open already. Their scent so sweet, distinctive, fleeting

The dogwood show is as thick on each individual tree this year as I think I've ever seen it. So many native dogwoods have been lost from our woods to blight. Yet the remaining ones shine.

My neighbor and I shared a lovely walk this morning. This afternoon, a gentle rain. We need the rain so badly, even this little bit helps. Yet there were some fields I passed in Pennsylvania (on my way to and from Willow Valley for lunch with my friend Ruth from high school) where grass mowed for hay was being damaged by the wetness. Harm and bounty both in the same drops.

The fox strolled by earlier, its coat looking thick, dark and light gray and red, and now a deer dashes across my view, one animal only, in full, leaping stride.

Monday, April 16, 2012

This day

My mother was born on April 16, more than 100 years ago. Her mind wandered into the mists of dementia by 1970, so her conscious influence ended then. Yet her power echoes still, and now her great-granddaughter likes to sit in the rocker my Mama preferred.

Sunday, April 15, 2012

Misty morning with foals

I walked the dirt road along Deer Creek
through days of bright sky, thankful for all,
yet often lost in overwhelm, battered,
waiting for dust to settle.

Today there is welcome, gentle moisture
in the air, and a sprinkle on the ground.
Dogwood blossoms glow in the woods,
a soft light like candelabra, branch held.

Mares and small, nursing foals
decorate the meadow, all day full
of clear life energy and hope.
Watch and see

Monday, April 9, 2012

Everything at once

How the voice of the world speaks, and humans aren't the primary audience. How Spring beauty opens, unfurls, submits to the passage of time. How reckless and eager the new growth.

Most years, the redbud blooms and fades, then the cherry, then the dogwood. This year they're all blooming at once. The year of all at once.

Carry it all breath by breath.

Saturday, April 7, 2012

Time to Grow

Everyone else left the house by five-thirty this morning. Alone for a while, I stepped outside for a few minutes as the moon disappeared behind the western trees and the sun began to pink the sky. Inside the house, the cats and all kinds of mechanical hums keep me company. Outside, though, the living world engages every sense, and Easter comes toward us again, forever arriving.

It's chilly this morning, and very clear. The dogwood are in bloom. In this part of the world, all is in flower and new growth. Even for the old and long-established, it's time to grow.