Waiting near the Well

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Solitude itself is a way of waiting for the inaudible and the invisible to make itself felt. And that is why solitude is never static and never hopeless

May Sarton

Post-Covid-19 breathlessness has somewhat increased my present solitude as I lack energy to tackle grocery shopping, or to eat much anyway, or to engage with ordinary human encounters – though I’d love a big warm hug right now!

Yet there is fine company to be enjoyed in a library populated by other solitary souls. ‘Virtual friendships’ and connections existed long before the advent of the world-wide web. And many the seeming disadvantage that offers gifts hidden just beneath the surface – many the refreshing pail to be drawn from the well at home on a quiet day.

This afternoon I’ve had my thirst quenched again ‘From May Sarton’s Well’ and by Hartmut Rosa’s ‘Resonance.’ In a world in which (regrettable) acceleration seems to be the aim and the way in all things, Rosa proposes not deceleration as a governing balance but resonance instead. And though there’ll be a lot more to be said about a work with which I’m taking my time, the proposal already resonates with me!

May Sarton proffers solitude as ‘a way of waiting for the inaudible and the invisible to make itself felt.’ And I find myself having a bit of time to apply both Rosa and Sarton’s notions to the ways we relate to each other – and the ways we feel about what can’t immediately be seen or spoken. In frustration, sometimes, we err on the side of either acceleration or deceleration in our encounters – be we artist or scientist, carer, caterer or consumer, educator, engineer, fabricator, lawyer, lover, medic, musician, parent, politician or retailer. How would it be for us if we afforded more attention to resonance, to vibration, to a being able to tune into resonating wavelength?

Solitude. Resonance. Waiting for the inaudible and the invisible to make itself felt. I intuit that such a way of living – even dreaming, perhaps – will prove worth the wait and the always growing sense of hope and of wonder at the well.

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Calm

Photo Osman Rana at Unsplash

The messages I’m receiving today are ‘calm’ and ‘reflection.’ I’m interested by the instincts I have to run around ‘as normal,’ alongside the chief effect of Covid-19 which, having drained me of energy, insists on ‘rest.’

So I’ve been thinking a lot about the harbours I’ve known in my life – the quiet backwaters where little vessels take time out from riding oceans and are protected and sometimes maintained, re-painted, sea-proofed, even loved there. And – gratefully – I ask myself ‘where would I be without them?’

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Awake or asleep?

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more @gardenstudiogram | click to enlarge

Awake or asleep? One of the chief combined effects of Covid-19 and a UK heatwave seems to be that I’m dropping off to sleep a lot – which is probably a good and health-giving thing. But it plays havoc with reading and with the typing of messages with family and friends. Half a paragraph and I’m away to the land of nod again! I’m grateful for the garden and the shade of my Japanese Acer today. Falling asleep in a garden chair outside somehow feels healthier than other options!

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The variety of life

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more @gardenstudiogram | click to enlarge

Sad though I am to be missing our second bothy weekend, I have to admit that temporary grounding in house and garden by Covid-19 is not without its joys.

Gardens, and nature generally, inspire my soul and enhance my perspective. I’m drawn to remember, and to reflect upon, the extraordinary diversity and variety in all things living – near and far, tiny and gigantic, colour, complexity, scent, size, shape, textures, life span and so on.

Peaceful today, and moved only a little by a mild breeze, beautiful life-forms in my garden appear simply to revel in their being-ness. As do the galaxies shown in glorious, mysterious technicolour by the world’s latest most advanced James Webb Space Telescope. I’m moved to be still for a while – to look at my own being-ness – in wonder.

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It’s us who need nature …

I wasn’t especially conscious of being in need of a bit of therapy when I placed my order for Dr Katie Cooper’s lovely volume Plant Therapy (link). Turns out it’s exactly what I needed this evening.

I’ve had one of those days that don’t really get going properly, and conversation with friends told me that several of us have been in the same – slightly under the weather – boat. Generally fairly sanguine, thinking about the suffering C-19 is causing in every direction has been gnawing at me more than usual. Sometimes lake, ocean and river put me to rights, at others my garden, a walk or an afternoon nap are the answer.

Tonight it’s having this book open in my lap that’s encouraging meditation, gratitude and fellow feeling with others – many suffering C-19 much more than my slightly grizzled mood is. Truth to tell, just having this beautiful book in the house has a great positive effect! A delight …