Thursday, October 30, 2008

Days of Grace

"This is what you shall do: Love the earth and sun and the animals, despise riches, give alms to every one that asks, stand up for the stupid and crazy, devote your income and labor to others, hate tyrants, argue not concerning God, have patience and indulgence toward the people, take off your hat to nothing known or unknown or to any man or number of men, go freely with powerful uneducated persons and with the young and with the mothers of families, read these leaves in the open air every season of every year of your life, re-examine all you have been told at school or church or in any book, dismiss whatever insults your own soul; and your very flesh shall be a great poem..." - Walt Whitman, Preface to Leaves of Grass

This week we have colds and it is cold outside. My thoughts go to last week when we spent warmer days outside, in the leaves. Sarah and I cut plants back for winter. Matt jumped in the leaves or dug in the dirt. Sam, who is becoming achy and arthritic, barked and ran in circles. Readying the garden for winter - can we call it work? 

Even on cool fall days, there is a sense of endings, of needing to things finish up. Like a squirrel with nuts, I become obsessed with completing my projects. Of needing to live life fully, and eat up, before winter comes.

Matt now seems to understand the concept of seasons. Waiting for the bus this morning, he crouched down to touch the grass, coated with crystals of our first hard frost. He tilted his head, "Is it winter now?" Last week, he stood in utter amazement, realizing the leaves were falling from the trees.

I am hoping for a few more warm days. Plants in the front yard need cutting back. Each year I hope for an Indian Summer, warm days I can open the doors and hear the leaves rustle.

Even with all the busy-ness, the colds, and my current bag of worries, these days feel like a poem.

1 comment:

amywb said...

beautiful reflection, ann - and beautiful kids (sam, too).