Lingering at the Well

Photo at Pexels

One thing is certain, and I have always known it – the joys of my life have nothing to do with age. They do not change. Flowers, the morning and evening light, music, poetry, silence, the goldfinches darting about …

May Sarton

Freesias, for me. For my desk. Peppery and colourful. And my best ever morning light? Two best ever! i – Sunrise over Galilee. ii – Normandy. Scented apple orchards and a golden mist hung a few feet above rolling fields, just after sunrise. Evening? In winter when it’s time for firelight. Music? Usually one piece at a time, silence before and aft to hold words, notation, resonance (!) and echo. Poetry? – my way of allowing the Universe to speak to me randomly: close my eyes and take down a volume – pot luck, usually followed by more of good fortune than anticipated. Silence? – why silence? William Stafford’s glorious ‘Listening’ suggests an answer more exquisitely than I’ve ever penned to date. And goldfinches? The ones who seem to enjoy my Japanese Acer as much as I do. Two little tininesses that fly-in disproportionate measures of duty-free joy from wherever they’ve been playing.

My father could hear a little animal step,
or a moth in the dark against the screen,
and every far sound called the listening out
into places where the rest of us had never been.

More spoke to him from the soft wild night
than came to our porch for us on the wind;
we would watch him look up and his face go keen
till the walls of the world flared, widened.

My father heard so much that we still stand
inviting the quiet by turning the face,
waiting for a time when something in the night
will touch us too from that other place.

William Stafford
Listening
from West of Your City
Talisman, 1960

Deep the wells that supply entire lifetimes.

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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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