How many thousands of divinity students
have dipped their bodies into the old night of your name.
What the girls waken to is you,
and when the young men dressed in silver weave
and flash in battle – that is also you.
The poets always met
in your long vaulted corridors.
And they were emperors of pure sound
and moving and deep and assured.
You are the delicate hour at nightfall
that makes all the poets equally good;
you crowd full of darkness into their mouths,
and every poet, sensing he has discovered greatness,
surrounds you with magnificent things.
A hundred thousand harps take you
like wings and sweep you up out of silence.
And your primitive wind is blowing
the fragrance of your marvelous power
to every being and to every creature in need.
Are the great visions of the ultimate peace among all people and the ultimate harmony of all creation just utopian fairy tales? No, they are not! They correspond to the deepest longings of the human heart and point to the truth waiting to be revealed beyond all lies and deceptions. These visions nurture our souls and strengthen our hearts. They offer us hope when we are close to despair, courage when we are tempted to give up on life, and trust when suspicion seems the more logical attitude. Without these visions our deepest aspirations, which give us the energy to overcome great obstacles and painful setbacks, will be dulled and our lives will become flat, boring, and finally destructive. Our visions enable us to live the full life.
– Henri Nouwen
For I, the Lord your God, hold your right hand; it is I who say to you, “Do not fear, I will help you.” – Isaiah 41:13
IN BUDDHISM, knowledge is regarded as an obstacle to understanding, like a block of ice that obstructs water from flowing. It is said that if we take one thing to be the truth and cling to it, even if truth itself comes in person and knocks at our door, we won’t open it. For things to reveal themselves to us, we need to be ready to abandon our views about them. – thich nhat hanh
from: Life Doesn’t Frighten Me – Maya Angelou
illustration: Jean-Michel Basquiat
Emily Dickinson was born this day in 1830. Celebrate with her handwritten recipe for coconut cake:
Fame is A Fickle Food
Fame is a fickle food
Upon a shifting plate
Whose table once a
Guest but not
The second time is set
Whose crumbs the crows inspect
And with ironic caw
Flap past it to the
Men eat of it and die
Jesus said to his disciples:
“What is your opinion?
If a man has a hundred sheep and one of them goes astray,
will he not leave the ninety-nine in the hills
and go in search of the stray?”
(Photo: Greene, Maine – January 2019)
Whoever has ears ought to hear.