We still have lots of retreatants around and some of our sisters, too, are getting in some last days of summer quiet time. Here's a beauty by Mary Oliver that would certainly take care of a day of retreat reflection by itself.
How Many Days
How many days I lived and had never used
the holy words.
Tenderly I began them when it came to me
to want to, oh mystery irrefutable!
Then I went out of that place
and into a field and lay down
among the weeds and the grasses,
whispering to them, fast, in order to keep
that world also.
As a sign of the lessening number of summer days we have a number of patches of Black-Eyed Susans that are dying away. On the other hand, luckily, we have other patches that are alive and bright.
This is one of my favorite trees on our property. It probably looks like a rather average tree to most, but it has three outstanding characteristics: 1) It is beautifully shaped, with feathery leaves that give it a rather wispy look; 2) It is positioned in the backyard so that whenever we eat out on the patio we get a perfect view of it; and 3) It's the last, very last, tree to get its leaves each spring, so late in fact that we all say, "Is that tree dead?" and luckily someone who knows its cycle is nearby and says, "No, it's just the last to come out, but wait until you see it." The proverbial best for last?!
And, welcome Alyssa and Carrie!