Monday, September 29, 2008

Sunday Afternoon

Yesterday afternoon, we went down to Raft Bayou. Marty and Robin had spent the night, but they were the only ones there, so it was quiet and peaceful. Such a beautiful day with a nice breeze to keep things fresh and interesting. The breeze moved, cool and pleasant against the skin, the leaves on the trees turned in that slow dance. A huge hawk circled the just disked field, time seemed less important. (These pictures are not from yesterday as I forgot my camera.)

While blog visiting this morning, I came across The Beauty That Moves (via Letters from a Hill Farm) and some lovely photography and then this wonderful poem by Mary Oliver--

When I Am Among the Trees

When I am among the trees,
especially the willows and the honey locust,
equally the beech, the oaks, and the pines,

they give off such hints of gladness.
I would almost say that they save me, and daily.

I am so distant from the hope of myself,

in which I have goodness, and discernment,
and never hurry through the world
but walk slowly, and bow often.

Around me the trees stir in their leaves
and call out, “Stay awhile.”

The light flows from their branches.

And they call again, “It’s simple,” they say,

“and you too have come
into the world to do this, to go easy, to be filled

with light, and to shine.”

Mary Oliver

The poem seems to highlight the ideas I've been reading in various books like The Intention Experiment, The Mindful Woman and A New Earth and the research I've been doing into meditation.I love the second verse of the poem that echoes so much of what we all feel in our hurried lives. Most of us do want to "go easy, to be filled with light" -- but it is sometimes difficult shed all the daily concerns that weigh on us, or even to recognize them, as they become such a part of our lives. Sometimes we need to be reminded about "go[ing] easy."


  1. a beautiful post. i especially like the patterns created by the birds lifting off in the last photo.

  2. I love mary oliver's poems. I'm glad you told me the top photo wasn't taken at post I was confused it looks much further along in the season.... bare trees and all.

    are those cattle egrets in the bottom pic?

    on my recent train trip the train ran along the hudson, I saw so many great birds - I was bummed tho as my camera was in the shop! but the memories are quite nice....

  3. jude - Thanks, Jude!

    kimy - Yes, the pictures (except for the egrets) were all later in the season. I call the egrets "cow birds" if they are in a pasture with cattle, and egrets if they appear sans cattle. Go figure! Locally idiomatic phrasing.

    I hate that your camera was in the shop during your trip--especially since your photography is always so interesting!

  4. Beautiful pictures. Love the book New Earth. I am a Christian, and I have been disappointed by all the negative press given to this book -- claiming it to be "unfaithful" on many levels. On the contrary, I do believe whatever your faith system -Christian included - this book resonates in wisdom and insight and can bring you into a deeper place within your faith. It is a wonderful book. I am going to look in to the others you mentioned. Thank you.

  5. Clevelandgirlie- Good ideas are universal and most religions support the idea of looking into "a deeper place within your faith."

    I find many of the ideas the same, but sometimes the way they are worded will give a deeper insight. In A New Earth, two things really stood out for me: 1) the stories we tell ourselves (if I'm going to continue telling a story over and over, I am going to make an effort to make it a good story!) and 2) the little parable about the monk who carried the woman across the river and the monk who was unable to let the event go.


Good to hear from you!