Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Things That Make Me Happy

I parked my car at the top of a hill. The ground drops off and travels steeply down where it meets a small stream at the bottom. It is a picturesque place just off the highway and along side the parking lot of the building that I was going to. It's pretty little spot that is mostly hidden from view, unless you park in this lot.

I was sitting in my carr filling out a form for work when I looked up and there was a head coming up from the hill- next came a long black neck, followed by a too large body and finally the webbed feet came into view. A Canada geese. Once he was at the top of the hill, he wagged his tail in triumph. I smiled. Then came another goose who repeated the same pattern. And then another and then another. An entire gaggle. One by one, up the hill they came and as each crested the hill it wagged its tail. I found myself smiling from ear to ear... the human method of tail wagging. 

Monday, November 29, 2010

Melancholy Morning

I cannot describe the solace and comfort that I receive from looking at nature. My father said once "Nature is glorious in all of her mantles." I love that and fully agree and embrace it; nature is beautiful in all seasons. Each has its own mystery. There is great beauty and mystery in every season. I love summer and all verdant lushness that accompanies it. But I was so thrilled when all the leaves were gone from the trees. I felt like an old friend had come to visit, the bones of the trees are fully exposed. The lacey treetops, the squirrel darries, and old bird nests- all exposed. The light pours in my window because there are no leaves to filter it and that light warms my bones. I love the soft browns, mauves and green/grays of the winter palate.

I eat lunch most days under a glorious grandmother sycamore tree, I love that tree. It stands along side a lovely lake called Strawberry Lake. I used to ice skate on this lake when I was just a kid. I didn't notice my sycamore tree then, but I know it was a silent sentinel even then. How many seasons has that tree seen? One just rolls into the next. I find great comfort in that. Eventually, my beloved tree will succumb, eventually, I will succumb too. And yet I find great peace in that, it is as it should be. I am reading a book called Wild Comfort by Kathleen Dean Moore, in in it she says each thing rolls into the next and becomes something else. God is a
verb, creating and creating and recreating.
Yes, things change, people die, sycamores fall under the axe, historic buildings collapse under the wrecking ball, but this is how it should be. Each thing should give way to the rise of the next thing. If we try to hang on to the old, the comfortable sameness, we stop the flow of God to create, and we suffer. It is far better to allow it to wash over us, experience whatever is, allow it to rise and then fall away. Like Rumi says it is "clearing you out for some new delight."

I am feeling melancholy today. I am enjoying my melancholy. It is very deep and dear. One of my most favorite things in the entire world is to look into the woods. Silly, I know. I love to try to see the mysteries that are hidden in the trees. And in the winter, there are young birch trees that don't loose their leaves, they hang on all winter and drop off in the spring when the new buds push their way through. They are cream colored and stand out so strikingly against the deep brown bark of the older trees. I am delighted by them. That's how I feel about my melancholy, it delights me. I know to tomorrow I will feel another way, but today I am enjoying this.
Wild Comfort: The Solace of Nature