Sometimes life gets a bit too much. Too confusing or stressful or whatever the case may be.
Shelly’s sky lark, and Keats’ nightingale, were envied by those nineteenth century poets for the peace of unreflective sentience. Today I want to share with the world a poem by Wendell Berry, the English lecturer turned farmer from the east coast of the US. Like Shelly and Keats a century before him, Berry reminds us of the peace experienced by nonhuman lives. It is an instructive lesson:
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.