When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry
I’ve always believed that most of us move through life both chased and chasing, driven as much by fear as by desire. The natural state of humankind is restlessness. We spend our days determined to get from one place to another.
But most people seem to find a way to keep pushing through. We even keep going when we don’t know the destination.
We come from water. Born swimmers.
“Love After Love”
The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,
and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you
all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,
the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.
Collected Poems, 1948-1984
Right actions in the future are the best apologies for bad actions in the past. —Tryon Edwards, published in December 2012 issue of The Sun
He has spent life best who has enjoyed it most. God will take care that we do not enjoy it any more than is good for us. —Samuel Butler