The owls that roost in the black yew
Along one limb in solemn state,
And with a red eye look you through,
Are eastern gods; they meditate.
No feather stirs on them, not one,
Until that melancholy hour
When night, supplanting the weak sun,
Resumes her interrupted power.
Their attitude instructs the wise
To shun all action, all surprise.
Suppose there passed a lovely face, —
Who even longs to follow it,
Must feel for ever the disgrace
Of having all but moved a bit.
— Edna St. Vincent Millay, Flowers of Evil (NY: Harper and Brothers, 1936)
It is not all gold that glitters."
We ought to be upon our guard against a dazzling exterior, as it frequently' conceals some
Master technique and then forget about it and be natural. Pavlova.
― Cuthbert Soup, A Whole Nother Story
“You will find out that Charity is a heavy burden to carry, heavier than the kettle of soup and the full basket. But you will keep your gentleness and your smile. It is not enough to give soup and bread. This the rich can do. You are the servant of the poor, always smiling and good-humoured. They are your masters, terribly sensitive and exacting masters you will see. And the uglier and the dirtier they will be, the more unjust and insulting, the more love you must give them. It is only for your love alone that the poor will forgive you the bread you give to them.”
― St. Vincent de Paul
“Astonishing material and revelation appear in our lives all the time. Let it be. Unto us, so much is given. We just have to be open for business.”
Anne Lamott, Help Thanks Wow: Three Essential Prayers
A gift involves sacrifice. If you give away something that you no longer value or want, it cannot be a gift. It is simply a discarded item.”
― Wayne Gerard Trotman
― Emily Dickinson
“If someone told me that I could live my life again free of depression provided I was willing to give up the gifts depression has given me–the depth of awareness, the expanded consciousness, the increased sensitivity, the awareness of limitation, the tenderness of love, the meaning of friendship, the appreciation of life, the joy of a passionate heart–I would say, ‘This is a Faustian bargain! Give me my depressions. Let the darkness descend. But do not take away the gifts that depression, with the help of some unseen hand, has dredged up from the deep ocean of my soul and strewn along the shores of my life. I can endure darkness if I must; but I cannot lie without these gifts. I cannot live without my soul.
― David Elkins, Beyond Religion: A Personal Program for Building a Spiritual Life Outside the Walls of Traditional Religion
Sukuma ( Tanzania )
“Mma Ramotswe had a gift for the American woman, a basket which on her return journey from Bulawayo she had bought, on impulse, from a woman sitting by the side of the road in Francistown. The woman was desperate, and Mma Ramotswe, who did not need a basket, had bought it to help her. It was a traditional Botswana basket, with a design worked into the weaving.
“These little marks here are tears,” she said. “The giraffe gives its tears to the women and they weave them into the basket.”
The American woman took the basket politely, in the proper Botswana way of receiving a gift with both hands. How rude were people who took a gift with one hand, as if snatching it from the donor; she knew better.
You are very kind, Mma,” she said. “But why did the giraffe give its tears?”
Mma Ramotswe shrugged; she had never thought about it. “I suppose that it means that we can all give something,” she said. “A giraffe has nothing else to give–only tears.” Did it mean that? she wondered. And for a moment she imagined that she saw a giraffe peering down through the trees, its strange stilt-borne body among the leaves; and its moist velvet cheeks and liquid eyes; and she thought of all the beauty that there was in Africa, and of the laughter, and the love.
The boy looked at the basket. “Is that true, Mma?”
Mma Ramotswe smiled. “I hope so,” she said.”
― Alexander McCall Smith, Tears of the Giraffe
“I feel about my dogs now, and all the dogs I had prior to this, the way I feel about children—they are that important to me. When I have lost a dog I have gone into a mourning period that lasted for months.”
Mary Tyler Moore
Beautiful music is the art of the prophets that can calm the agitations of the soul; it is one of the most magnificent and delightful presents God has given us. Martin Luther.
"National proverbs: Serbia"
are a living wonder
for those who take time to open
ty SUZIE’S SANCTUARY
foto – nsw archives in armidale 2008
"National proverbs: Serbia"
One day the gift arrives — outside your door,
Left on a windowsill, inside the mailbox,
Or in the hallway, far too large to lift.
Your postman shrugs his shoulders, the police
Consult a statute, and the cat miaows.
No name, no signature, and no address,
Only, “To you, my dearest one, my all …”
One day it all fits snugly on your lap,
Then fills the backyard like afternoon in spring.
Nicholas Birns: From Man Alone to Global Potentiality; The Course of Australian Poetry
foto – coldstream street and the books of w w jacob. nov 2009.