Poet Mary Oliver says praying, writing, creating, living your life in a meaningful, courageous, and as with most writers, a public way-- we stick our hearts out-- doesn't have to be the "blue iris" and that "a few small stones" will do. As a gatherer of rocks and pebbles, heart shaped mostly, but lately I've been drawn to the round dark shale stones with a circle of quartz that looks as if someone drew them on with chalk, I love that line: a few small stones. I could do worse than rub a few pebbles together as "a doorway into thanks" for the privledge of having you read what I write.
"People think pleasing God is all God cares about. But any fool living in the world can see it always trying to please us back."
--Alice Walker, The Color Purple
"This is what dogs give us-- a connection. A connection to life on earth, to all that binds and cradles us, lest we begin to feel too alone."--Patricia McConnell in For the Love of a Dog
A friend sings this song in the car in the morning as she leaves home:
I have something in my pocket
That belongs across my face.
I keep it very close to me
In a most convenient place.
I bet you'll never guess it
If you guessed a long, long while.
So, I'll take it out and put it on;
It's a great big Brownie smile!
“When it's time to die, go ahead and die, and when it's time to live, live. Don't sort-of-maybe live, but live like you're going all out, like you're not afraid.” ― Sue Monk Kidd, The Secret Life of Bees
'Live like you are not afraid'-- I love that line.
I won't say I'm used to bad news-- but certainly the headlines lately leave little room for optimism-- the president is off the rails, Hollywood too, and fires and floods, mean-ness and murders in Las Vegas, injustice, misogyny, bigotry, racism,the future of the planet, the Cubs last night.
Then there was this on the local radio: "Two young Haines residents are facing felony drug charges after a package containing a significant amount of heroin was allegedly intercepted on its way to the local post office."
It breaks my heart.
I've been whistling "Monday, Monday, la laaa, la la la laaa..." -- Because, as the poet Billy Collins says-- in his poem Monday, " the birds are in their trees, the toast is in the toaster and the poets are at their windows "-- and this writer is at her desk by the window. It's a little messy, there is a puppy chewing on a laptop cord, and an older dog sighing and farting on the dog bed, and yes, as the poet would say, there is some tea involved, and a window. Three actually.
“When I was young, I admired clever people. Now that I am old, I admire kind people.”
― Abraham Joshua Heschel