“Kindness covers all of my political beliefs. No need to spell them out. I believe that if, at the end, according to our abilities, we have done something to make others a little happier, and something to make ourselves a little happier, that is about the best we can do. To make others less happy is a crime. To make ourselves unhappy is where all crime starts. We must try to contribute joy to the world. That is true no matter what our problems, our health, our circumstances. We must try. I didn’t always know this and am happy I lived long enough to find it out.”
”The trigger I’d pulled in stepping into the snow made me more alive to my senses than ever. Uncertain as I was as I pushed forward, I felt right in my pushing, as if the effort itself meant something. That perhaps being amidst the undesecrated beauty of the wilderness meant I too could be undesecrated, regardless of what I’d lost or what had been taken from me, regardless of the regrettable things I’d done to others or myself or the regrettable things that had been done to me. Of all the things I’d been skeptical about, I didn’t feel skeptical about this: the wilderness had a clarity that included me.”
Cheryl Strayed, Wild
Spent a long time on the IHM database at the National Library of Medicine last night. Some compellingly beautiful things to see there.
Does happiness strain credibility? Is there something in the human spirit that distrusts its own appetites, its own yearning for healing and contentment? Can we not believe two adults, in love, might resolve to make their own miracle?
Tim O’Brien, In the Lake of the Woods
you’ve got to push all the doubt to the side of your mouth
Probably way late to the bus (bandwagon, whatever) on this one, but what I lack in timeliness I make up for in enthusiasm.
A beautiful thing that a friend of mine helped to make.
I’ve been listening to the snow melt all afternoon
Remembering, Rainer Maria Rilke
And you wait. You wait for the one thing In the dusky bookstalls And suddenly you know: that was enough. Translated by Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy
that will change your life,
make it more than it is—
something wonderful, exceptional,
stones awakening, depths opening to you.
old books glimmer gold and brown.
You think of lands you journeyed through,
of paintings and a dress once worn
by a woman you never found again.
You rise and there appears before you
in all its longings and hesitations
the shape of what you lived.
And you wait. You wait for the one thing
In the dusky bookstalls
And suddenly you know: that was enough.
Translated by Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy
Olives, Bread, Honey, and Salt
The lanes are littered with the bodies of bees.
A torrent took them, swarming in branches
just as the white buds loosened their hearts
of pale yellow powder. Each body is a lover:
the one with skin blank as pages; the one
so moved by the pulse ticking in your throat;
the one who took your lips in his teeth
and wouldn’t let go; the one who turned
from you and lay there like a carcass. If we were
made to be whole, we wouldn’t be so lost
to each offering of tenderness and a story.
Therefore our greatest longing is our home.
There is always the one bee that circles and circles,
twitching its sodden wings.