The Presence of Stillness









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 green 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.
~Wendell Berry “The Peace of Wild Things” from The Selected Poems of Wendell Berry






When our young grandchild visits
and I watch her discover
the joys and sorrows of this world,
I remember there is light beyond the darkness we feel,
there is peace amid the chaos,
there is a smile behind the tears,
there is stillness within the noisiness,
there is grace as old gives way to new.







7 thoughts on “The Presence of Stillness

  1. I never know what I love most about your blog – the gorgeous photographs, the profound poetry, or the insight you so lovingly compose. But then I realized what I love most is the fact you share it with us. Thank you for imparting this grace.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Your thoughts evoke lovely memories of the treasured times when I actually experienced the peace that you describe and picture here, Emily. Your words, ‘light beyond the darkness,’ especially, are beautiful and hopeful in the way that they describe the elusive, fleeting qualities of the words ‘peace and stillness.’
    Thank you.

    Liked by 3 people

  3. Yes, the great blue heron came to our farm pond every day and went fishing there.
    One of the bits of nature I miss seeing here in my new space.
    Is that a picture of the moon Sunday night with Venus nearby?
    For some reason and I guess it is the vast view from our sunroom here,
    I appreciate the night sky more than I did in years past..
    Thank you for activating my memory and my appreciation for all of God’s creation.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. And it’s not a harsh light beyond the darkness, but a warm, comforting light. An incubater of wellness, a spiritual multi-vitamin, the ultimate “good vibe.”

    Liked by 1 person

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