Spring has come slowly this year to Vermont, cool and wet and green. Lush new pale greens, yellow greens, dots of yellow daffodils and white lilacs. Fragrances of sweetness and light. A welcome full on sensory delight after a long, hard winter. My niece sent me a poem entitled "Instructions on Not Giving Up" by Ada Limon about the patient green leaves that unfurl "like a fist to an open palm." I am encouraged by this poem as I am and we are all uplifted by spring and returning life and warmth.
This week, a few of us decided on the spur of the moment to hike up to a mountain lake to overnight camp. What a wonder to swim in a frigid spring fed lake in May, to discover a nest full of baby ducks in a circle of ferns, and a pink lady slipper growing in between boulders. What a delight to share a tasty meal that we had all packed in pieces of, to roast marshmallows and to listen to the wind and the rushing stream. We surrounded ourselves with the miracles of the spring and the new world. We read each other poetry.
Here is a favorite by Mary Oliver, "What I Have Learned so Far"
Meditation is old and honorable, so why should I not sit, every morning of my life, on the hillside, looking into the shining world? Because, properly attended to, delight, as well as havoc, is suggestion. Can one be passionate about the just, the ideal, the sublime, and the holy, and yet commit to no labor in its cause? I don’t think so.
All summations have a beginning, all effect has a story, all kindness begins with the sown seed. Thought buds toward radiance. The gospel of light is the crossroads of — indolence, or action.
Be ignited, or be gone.
May we all grow into summer delighting in the precious natural world and our humanity and also working in solidarity to defend and preserve it as best we can.