These woods are lovely dark and deep,
But I have played all day and now it’s time to sleep.
I pray thee Lord my soul to keep,
As angels watch me through the night,
And keep me safe till morning light.
When it’s time to play again.
Out for a walk on a winter’s day, I come upon a fence. The fence is made of wood and falling down here and there, so I know that no one cares to make repairs and keep me out. A thought by Robert Frost comes to mind that good fences make good neighbors. Hmm-m, I pause, I stop and watch the fence and yet it does not move. It does not keep the rabbit out nor the yelping dogs, and surely not the deer. They who run and jump love a strong and sturdy fence that says to those who carry guns, keep out.
Still, I shout, hello, to see if anyone replies.
Stay, it says silently.
With not a soul in sight to give offense, should I cross or stay? An old fence in the woods and far, far, far from home, it seems to me, is not so neighborly. And now a thought for an old man who is frail, and cannot climb a fence.
Would it be a crime, should I remove a log or two?
Oh, the winter is quite wicked with its biting, whining wind and snow. Oh, my careless woes.
If I am going to stick with a New Year’s Resolution in 2017, it might be this:
Go not where the path may lead, go instead where there is no path and leave a trail.
Ralph Waldo Emerson
The thing about resolutions is that they are often abandoned and forgotten like a clod upon a field. Still, if even a glimmer of the resolution is kept, we create a whole new person with a whole new outlook on life. This thought leads me along the path to one of my favorite authors, Roald Dahl, who said:
And above all, watch with glittering eyes the whole world around you because the greatest secrets are always hidden in the most unlikely places. Those who don’t believe in magic will never find it.
Magic is a wonderful thing. It makes life exciting. It makes life likeable and livable. I am not speaking of Las Vegas magic, I am speaking of the magic of finding something new in life, of discovering that learning never ends.
This year, I will be home for the holidays.
My grown children are arriving soon from Colorado and Texas. Dear guests will drop by. My aunt will be making cookies and pie. I’ll be buying the beer and wine. It is the least and the most I can do. And the cold days and long nights give rise to thoughts like these:
The highlight in December is Christmas
A day we are all waiting for
When family and guest gather round
To listen to the sound of carols
To share presents under the tree
To raise a spirited cheer
With a glass of wine
To throw a log of wood on the fire
And stare at the flickering light
But out in the hills and valleys and woods
The animals gather too
Underneath the twinkling stars
To ward off the cold and dark
There below the heavenly skies
To experience the beauty of the snow and the silence
With its gently sloping contours, Stressless Manhattan is a stunning example of an original Stressless design. A fixed back and curved wood finishes gives the Manhattan a serene sense of style, cosmopolitan and elegant as the name implies.
Available in a traditional three seat sofa, a two seat loveseat, and chair.
The leather Paloma, the color metal grey is a time of reflection and a sign of change. Neither black nor white, the color illuminates the way forward in this sometimes cold world.
How color makes all the difference in the world.
Like the sun, yellow signals a brighter day. Yellow communicates the beauty of the world. Yellow is the scientist and the poet, constantly analyzing, methodical and decisive, joyous and curious, looking and discovering what makes life meaningful.
What is your color?
Homefurnishers sells Stressless in all the colors of the rainbow.
Gentle reader, let me leave you with this thought from John Locke, “We are all a sort of chameleons, that still take a tincture from things near us,” meaning: the color of the world we surround ourselves with gives substance to our souls. Locke wrote these words in Some Thoughts Concerning Education (1693), concluding with the observation, “nor is it to be wondered at in children, who better understand what they see, than what they hear.”
Gentle reader, we do not need to understand what it takes to be happy, it is enough to see it in the smile of a child who sees for the first time the beauty of a rainbow after the rain.
Let me ask again, what is your color?
Since the printing press …, poetry has ceased to be the delight of the whole community of man; it has become the amusement and delight of the few.
– John Masefield
Sadly, one could expand on Masefield’s observation about the printing press and include television (and the iPhone) which was not around in 1912 when Masefield published Salt-Water Poems and Ballads, which contains Sea Fever, one of his most beloved poems.
“I must go down to the seas again, to the lonely sea and the sky,
And all I ask is a tall ship and a star to steer her by;
And the wheel’s kick and the wind’s song and the white sail’s shaking,
And a grey mist on the sea’s face, and a grey dawn breaking.
I must go down to the seas again, for the call of the running tide
Is a wild call and a clear call that may not be denied;
And all I ask is a windy day with the white clouds flying,
And the flung spray and the blown spume, and the sea-gulls crying.
I must go down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy life,
To the gull’s way and the whale’s way where the wind’s like a whetted knife;
And all I ask is a merry yarn from a laughing fellow-rover,
And quiet sleep and a sweet dream when the long trick’s over.”
The discerning Stressless man or woman is a poet at heart and a sea-faring sort. The empty chairs tell us that both of them have gone down to the seas again, to the vagrant gypsy’s life.
Thanks to the internet, you can find more poetry at the Poetry Foundation.
In this day of fast cars and jet planes, does anyone know what it means to be at the will of the wind and the sea? Poetically, John Masefield sets us asail.
Interesting that Masefield speaks of the seas, plural. For he understood that, from time immemorial, man’s destiny was to set sail and adventure into the unknown – a human need expressed by the Carthaginians, the Greeks, the Vikings, the Spanish and the Portuguese, and certainly by the Polynesians who sailed into the vast Pacific Ocean for thousands of miles on balsa rafts aided only by their intuitive powers.
That is faith.
Now, I have a dilemma. Do I play on my iPod, Enya’s Sail Away, or Christopher Cross’s Sailing?