It is a rainy day in the mountains of North Carolina where Katie and I are taking some days of rest. Yesterday was beautiful - sunny, warm and glorious colors! I guess it was my one day of "Indian Summer." But today has its own sort of beauty. Katie and I took an early morning walk in the rain. I saw a few deer which Kate did not see because her nose was to the ground...such good smells here! Most of the deer were in the fleeing mode because we are tramping on their turf, but it was lovely to see their warm brown bodies and beautiful white tails. I'm getting ready to make preparations for beef stew. It will cook most of the afternoon and fill the house with a fragrance better than Febreeze!
I've had this poem in mind for sometime now but it didn't hit paper until last night. I'm not sure it's in final form but close.
“You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky,
but you do not know how to interpret the signs of the times.”*
Squirrels run, finding
secret places for seeds and nuts.
Woolly worms act suicidal,
crossing hot asphalt,
showing off thick, dark coats.
Branches weighted with berries
drape themselves thickly over fences.
They are the fabric of winter food.
We read these signs like an almanac.
We trust the squirrel, the worm, the berry
to tell us the ways of nature.
Global warming says prepare to thaw.
Signs in nature cancel those preparations.
Careful and watchful – we are
the interpreters of nature’s ways.
How shall we interpret our times?
The newspaper and post office dwindle.
We are electronic; quick as a synapse.
Every day we speed toward
overcoming all that ails in life.
Soon we will not need to fear microbe or neutron.
We trust progress as the sign of a good life
History offers its signs as well.
We make war over and over,
with the same people.
We are curved inward and preoccupied with self.
Preparing for war, building walls
that separate each one from the next;
we trust no one.
Within history is a sign so pure
that all other signs blare false,
and all other news contributes little.
We watch as water, oil, bread and wine
become signs of love that will not cease.
This love is the true sign of the One
who made us in their image –
to be a sign of love to the world.
* Matthew 16:4
mah - 10/2009