we find it hitched to everything else in the universe

From John Muir: Nature Writings (an anthology): When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the universe. One fancies a heart like our own must be beating in every crystal and cell, and we feel like stopping to speak to the plants and animals as friendlyContinue reading “we find it hitched to everything else in the universe”

the leaping greenly spirits of trees

e e cummings i thank You God for most this amazing day: for the leaping greenly spirits of trees and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything which is natural which is infinite which is yes (i who have died am alive again today, and this is the sun’s birthday; this is theContinue reading “the leaping greenly spirits of trees”

be beginning to despair

Poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins. I heard this recited twice with remarkable mastery by a new friend this past week (once late at night and once early in the morning). These recitations were among top “experiences” of my life thus far. The Leaden Echo and the Golden Echo (Maidens’ song from St. Winefred’s Well) THEContinue reading “be beginning to despair”

a few lilies blow

Heaven—Haven A nun takes the veil       I HAVE desired to go       Where springs not fail, To fields where flies no sharp and sided hail     And a few lilies blow.     And I have asked to be       Where no storms come, Where the green swell is in the havens dumb,     And out of the swing ofContinue reading “a few lilies blow”

the world is like an oilpress

Thus the world is like an oilpress: under pressure. If you are the dregs of the oil you are carried away through the sewer; if you are genuine oil you will remain in the vessel. But to be under pressure is inevitable. Observe the dregs, observe the oil. Pressure takes place ever in the world,Continue reading “the world is like an oilpress”

airy abeles set on a flare

The magi would have understood this imperative to look at the stars. Abeles (or white poplars) are a Eurasian salicaceous tree (Populus alba) having palmately (“like a palm with fingers extended”) lobed leaves covered on the underside with dense silvery-white hairs. Flares are “a fire or blaze of light used especially to signal, illuminate, orContinue reading “airy abeles set on a flare”

ooze of oil

Gerard Manley Hopkins (1844–89): God’s Grandeur THE WORLD is charged with the grandeur of God. It will flame out, like shining from shook foil; It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod? Generations have trod, have trod, have trod; And all is searedContinue reading “ooze of oil”