“She is the rain and snows that arise from the waters and replenishes them again…as young and as ancient as spring, like the song of glad water flowing into the night from the bright morning in the hills.” Describing Goldberry. From The Lord of the Rings, The Fellowship of the Ring.
I am writing this after a night of thunder and rain, after a day I spent finishing a new garden bed. The renewed earth smells loamy and rich in my backyard, the air still misty, textured and heavy, holding hope, smelling of promise.
I am also writing this after a week of terror and tension, the day after the second Boston Marathon bombing suspect has been captured.
Such strange juxtapositions. Death and destruction, life and spring. The inhumanity of mankind opposed by courage and resiliency, and the acts of compassion by people. I find myself asking questions to try to reconcile humankind’s inconsistency.
And whenever we are pulled apart by polarities this extreme it takes a toll on our spirit. Like my garden in winter, we can feel choked by death even when release is coming in the renewal of the spring rain.
Walt Whitman in Leaves of Grass captures it this way:
“O me! O life!… of the questions of these recurring;
Of the endless trains of the faithless—of cities fill’d with the foolish;
Of myself forever reproaching myself, (for who more foolish than I, and who more faithless?)
Of eyes that vainly crave the light—of the objects mean—of the struggle ever renew’d;
Of the poor results of all—of the plodding and sordid crowds I see around me;
Of the empty and useless years of the rest—with the rest me intertwined;
The question, O me! so sad, recurring—What good amid these, O me, O life?
That you are here—that life exists, and identity;
That the powerful play goes on, and you will contribute a verse.”
We are all called to respond to our world, in big ways if we can, and in small, to find the means to defy despair and affirm hope. At one point for me that was in creating programs for homeless women, delinquent teens, abused women, and struggling parents. Now, I seek to lay a gentle path across the world, to write, to read, to rejoice in simple things.
This is one of my verses. My garden is another. My family is my song.
Can you feel the music inside? You have beauty within and verses to share, and on the power of our shared melody we can all be renewed. Celebrate yourself, sing, and refresh your spirit. May we raise our voices together.
- Why Walt Whitman Still Matters (darthellen.wordpress.com)
- Spring Cleaning Our Homes and Hearts (standupongrace.wordpress.com)
What an especially lovely, poetic blog today.