I have been quiet lately.
It is hard to know what to say in the face of another mass murder in our country.
It is hard to know what to say in the face of our toxic political culture.
It is hard to know what to say in light of all the yapping going on, the picking of sides, the fomenting of hate.
Sometimes, it is just hard to know what to say that doesn't sound trite,
And then I remembered,
that when I don't know what to say,
I often turn to poetry;
sometimes the poetry of the Psalms,
sometimes more worldy poetry.
And I know I have posted this Wendell Berry poem before,
but it is perfect for my heart in this moment,
for yours as well.
The Peace of Wild Things
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.
When humankind makes you weary, friends ...
get to water, to the woods, to the wild places,
and remember that
we can become peacemakers,
but first we must become peaceful in our own spirits.
And God gives us (for free!) his own beautiful creation
as a resting place,
that we are not all that exists,
that God is bigger than our ragings
all will be well.
Then, go be a peacemaker ...