Despair for the World and the Peace of Wild Things

Here is Marion Dane Bauer, quoting one of my very favorite Wendell Berry passages:

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 might 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…

via Despair for the World — Just Thinking

img_0972I love the fact that Berry deals in ambiguities. He makes me think. I am not always certain about the peace of wild things. It’s a more appealing concept than Nature, red in tooth and claw but some days it seems as improbable. But then I go out into the garden and see how the fenugreek seeds I scattered weeks ago have grown in the new rain. I hear the flickers in the forest and the pileated woodpeckers drilling holes with the efficiency of carpenters,  and at once, if only for a moment, I feel part of the beauty.

I’m just finishing revisions on a novel whose story plays out against the backdrop of World War II. Soon I’ll be trying to decide which new project to focus on, and conflict will be front and center because that is how story is. In between, I find that I am badly in need of the peace of wild things.

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