I wake up every morning at dawn and look out my garden window to the soft pink clouds that beckon me eastward. Sometimes I go on my walk immediately, taking blue and blackberries with me. Sometimes I have a silent, joyful breakfast at my small table and then I venture out into the blue, green, red, yellow, and orange world of a sunny autumn day. Sometimes, seeking wind and waters, I walk to Prospect Lake. Other times, seeking earth, I saunter through the old woods in the park. Sometimes, seeking human fire, I walk to watch people passing me by in the sidewalks of Brooklyn.
Then I return home and open a book of poetry to read a few verses. The other day it was Mary Oliver’s poem “Loneliness” from Blue Horses:
“I too have known loneliness.
I too have known what it is to feel
rejected, and suddenly
not at all beautiful.
Oh, mother earth,
your comfort is great, your arms never withhold.
It has saved my life to know this.
Your rivers flowing. Your roses opening in the morning.
Oh, motions of tenderness!”
As I read I empathized with the poet. Nature too has comforted and held me many times, as it has in these recent autumn days. I found soothing company in the poet’s voice.
And I felt an ecstatic rush as I mused, imagining a Naiad standing on the banks of a flowing river and a caring angel tending to the roses in our garden.
(Photo: Roses at Brooklyn Botanical Garden by Andrew Hayward)