Simple Life. Grand Soul.

I was introduced to Wendell Berry, the Southern farmer, poet, prophet, minister and saint by my friend Tallu. She read one of his poems in church years ago. It was such a gift to me. Like Thomas Merton, Berry’s words are like illumined arrows that hit the bullseye of my soul. This man lives what he preaches. What I mean is that he uses all that he is (mind, body and spirit) to love his wife, family, the land and God. Berry’s poetry so beautifully articulates what I strive for in my own life:

Simple Life. Grand Soul. 

 

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 for their light.

For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.

 

Wednell Berry

I just purchased a copy of Berry’s Given at the Sewanee bookstore. It is a collection of “Sabbath poems” that Berry composed on Sunday walks through nature. We cannot ever hear enough words about Love!

Sabbaths, 1998

I

Whatever happens,

those who have learned

to love one another

have made their way

to the lasting world

and will not leave,

whatever happens.

Live in Hope,

Farrell

 

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