The actual Super-moon is supposed to show tomorrow, but I thought the prequel was pretty close to the genuine article; and anyway, it could always be cloudy tomorrow.
The tree branch seems to reach out, as if to suggest alliance between Earth and its moon.
“God moves in a mysterious way, His mercies to perform. . .” is the title and first line of a hymn written by William Cowper (1731-1800) in 1774. Believers in God’s works, omnipotence, grace, and pure, undeserved mercy apprehend well the truth published in this line.
My husband and I spent a couple of hours in our County’s jail on Thanksgiving, as we did last year, helping to serve a Thanksgiving dinner to more than 50 trusted inmates. Jail inmates prepared part of the meal, and the Prosecutor’s office received funding for the food. My husband, a county public defender, and I were among those serving the well-cooked, attractive meal of turkey, mashed potatoes, rolls, cranberries, etc. The inmates were cheerful and cordial.
Witnessing the inmates’ conviviality gave me pause for gratitude for God’s merciful grace. All mankind errs. God forgives all who repent. Viewing the hard side of error–incarceration–is a sobering thing. It is also a beautiful thing, to see repentance perceptibly fulfilled, and the promise of forgiveness.
Once again, Happy Thanksgiving, especially to all who apprehend and repent of their own sins and the gracious mercy that removes them from our blotters.
Filed under Faith, Thoughts
For the several years my husband has planted sunflower seeds in the spring, they have come up tall and strong by the onset of summer in all their Sunflower Yellow glory. Ours are now forming flowers in their still-green stage. Their stalks are straight, tall, strong, and prickly.
I was trying to recall who wrote a poem with a refrain, “And I am waiting for the rebirth of wonder,” and came up with Lawrence Ferlinghetti, in whose poetry I lost interest while I was still in high school. I Googled the quote anyway, and it seems lots of people have used it, and it wasn’t expressly clear whether Ferlinghetti was the first.
Whoever wrote this line, it enters my mind when I await the bloom of sunflowers, and other wondrous and beautiful bounties with which our Creator blesses us, for nothing we have done.
A sunflower begins its complex process of blooming: it will undergo metamorphoses from verdant to gold, and prickles to petals.
“I am waiting for the rebirth of wonder.”
Another fitting line: “Death is the mother of beauty.” (from Wallace Stevens’s poem, Sunday Morning).
The trout are not golden, of course; nor is the stainless steel sink. Evidently the flash had a transitory misapprehension episode.
Warmer weather (in the 50s), and daylight lasting til nearly 7:30, have replaced our short, cold days. This week my husband and I went fishing at the nearby pond Tuesday and Thursday after dinner. Tuesday, Vic caught two leaping rainbows, each about 10 inches, in less than an hour as dusk was approaching. Thursday, I caught two exuberant 10-inch trout in the same amount of time.
We feel honored that these beautiful fish, a bountiful boon from the Creator of fish and man, would come home with us.
I have a thematic world view. I view events, behaviors, objects, thoughts, and media according to themes. I think of concepts and things in terms of the thematic context I see them as presenting. I consider myself a thematicist.
Some hours ago, I believed I had coined the word “thematicist.” I was incredulous that the word was not to be found either in our 1928 or 1974 Webster’s dictionaries. I Googled the word to see whether it was in any lexicon anywhere. Several uses of the word came up in various books, as well as the blog of another blogger who also wondered whether he had coined the word.
I like to detect and analyze themes in what I read. I enjoy photography, particularly when I find something thematic in the subject (frequently my cat’s face). I don’t draw well, but I have a charm bracelet and a collection of interchangeable charms that I change frequently and arrange according to a particular theme. (Presently featured is “meteorological vicissitudes in silver.”)
Themes anchor us. But themes can also be like the “things” of which Yeats writes in his poem The Second Coming–“Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold; Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world. . .”
When my themes of How Things Should Be implode, I mourn and pine for them. When my themes give me a sense of true integration, I am given cheer and peace of mind. I might, for instance, see a flock of pelicans on the river, or in flight on their migration. This is a thematic event; the theme of God’s perfect ordering of all Creation is presented to my desponding self, formerly frustrated over some stupid political event as remote from my control as an errant missile off trajectory in space.
And so I remain a thematicist. And my snowman gets to jangle on my wrist, right next to my palm tree.
The morning of Thursday, November 17, our deck glistened with our first frost of 2016. We have not been hard-frosted since.
If the super-moon hovered over the Eastern Washington prairie, either we missed it or it wasn’t dramatically huge and stunning.
I will not bore my readers with my mopey election malaise.
My five-year-old granddaughter now shops online for what she wants for Christmas. I sent a gift card so she could (with a little help from her Mom) buy some figure skates and a skate tote.
I made a request and my doctor’s office granted it. I may phone my doctor’s office to confirm my appointment, instead of completing a lengthy electronic form requiring a phone call to a robot midway through it to secure a code that authorizes completion of my multi-page promises: (a) that I am me; and (b) that I will show up for my appointment.
Assuredly, complexity and quality of life have become inversely proportional.
Effie is on track with her priorities, none of which require Senate ratification.
Thanks be to God for the wonderful and amazing gift that some things in life are still simple.
We enjoy fishing, rain or shine, and whether or not we catch any fish. There have been only a few times that no fish preferred to leave their river and come home with us. But fall and summer are different seasons, and fish are known to change their routes and their behaviors with seasonal changes.
In summer, we routinely found fish willing to leave their river and come home with us. Now, their autumn attitude is to remain in their river where they are. That’s just fishing. Simply being out fishing on the river, from a boat or afoot on the shore, is agreeable whether or not fish come home with us, whether or not rain is falling, and whether or not other projects beg our time.
Today marks the third fishing Saturday in a row that no fish took an interest in our formerly enticing lures, even though the little spinning spoons were festive and colorful. Rain fell the entire time we were out. But after all, how can I blame them? What do the season-savvy piscines owe us?
Life has its consolations. We saw a wild ferret bounding into the tall grass and trees near the dock as we were putting in our skiff. The little sprinter was the first ferret I have ever seen in the wild. My husband fresh-canned the fish we caught over the summer, and still has a three-month supply. And I love it that Bob Dylan received the Nobel Prize in Literature.
My husband took all the photos in this post.
My husband took a highly unusual day off from his work as a freedom fighter (he’s a Public Defender) today so that we could go fishing and he could take his mind off his 50 open cases. It was an exceptional Wednesday for me, as well, to spend a weekday together fishing, instead of facing my most rigorous home chores of the week. After nearly five hours’ fishing, my husband helped me with my Wednesday chores.
We fished along the Grande Ronde, moving upstream and downstream, casting our lines in and around its rapids. Uncharacteristically we didn’t catch a single fish, but lost two flies and three lures between us trying. This time it wasn’t big fish absconding with our gear, but rock snags.
Our lost gear didn’t matter, and neither did not catching fish; we have plenty put up in canning jars. Our time fishing was wonderful, despite coming home with an empty fish cooler. We spent most of a day with a beautiful river all to ourselves, with spectacular canyon scenery around us, and an absence of noise. We both made several hundred casts into the rapids, and not one of them was fruitless, even if we donated a few lures to the rocks.
My thought, as I cast as far as I could, over and over, seemed trite, but nonetheless true. Casting into the rapids is what life is supposed to be. You reach as far as you possibly can, with hope and aspiration. You may gain, lose, or stay even, but you keep casting. Rapids are a kinetic force; you must be kinetic if you desire their bounty. I like to fish, and I especially like to catch fish. But even if I don’t catch a single fish, I like interacting with the river, always with hope in my heart of sharing its bounty. And having hope is its own reward.
We ate our lunch here today.
“Things fall apart; the centre cannot hold;
Mere anarchy is loosed upon the world. . .”
–W.B. Yeats: The Second Coming
I will be able conscionably to vote for exactly one candidate for office this year, out of all the presumptive hopefuls whose names will fill the federal, state, and local ballots I will receive. I had hoped there would be two, but my state’s admirable Lieutenant Governor decided not to run for a sixth term.
Things could be worse, and they are. For instance, some rough beast driving a huge white truck slouched into Nice, France during a festive celebration of Bastille Day yesterday. As if pretending the crowd were ramparts of the Bastille, he drove along the sidewalk, maniacally slaughtering 84 humans and injuring another 200-plus. This was exactly no one’s finest hour.
My cat Effie can take down a 2-inch grasshopper, play with it, and consume it in less than half a minute. She possesses raw talent as a huntress, and reveals little evidence of malice or forethought. She descends from animals who killed other creatures for pragmatic reasons, like food, fear, survival. But I will not set up a comparison between human and animal behavior–it makes me too nuts to think about it. I’ll just say that practically nothing is ever her fault.
Effie purposefully stalks a trophy-size grasshopper. . .
and she always gets her bug.
Falling snow should upend the beholder’s belief in calculability. . . .