I am a frayed and nibbled survivor in a fallen world, and I am getting along. I am aging and eaten and have done my share of eating too. I am not washed and beautiful, in control of a shining world in which everything fits, but instead am wandering awed about on a splintered wreck I’ve come to care for, whose gnawed trees breathe a delicate air, whose bloodied and scarred creatures are my dearest companions, and whose beauty beats and shines not IN its inperfections but overwhelmingly in spite of them, under the wind-rent clouds, upstream and down.
One evening, just when I needed it most, a very good friend of mine sent this passage from the book PILGRIM AT TINKER CREEK
by Annie Dillard.
When I read it, it spoke to me. I read it again and again. I really wanted to share it with you, too.
A very long time ago I tried to read PILGRIM AT TINKER CREEK. It was just a year after she wrote that book that I was living in a tiny old log cabin in Southesast Alaska, reading by the light of a kerosene lamp. But, I didn’t get it then. I wasn’t ready, I guess. Maybe I was too young to understand what she really meant.
Now I’m revisiting The Pilgrim.
TEACHING A STONE TO TALK is also new on my night stand. I am enthralled with the essay LIVING LIKE WEASELS.
Everybody knows how the weasel lives. Joyfully, right?
“I would like to learn, or remember, how to live.”
I would like to live as I should, as the weasel lives as he should. And I suspect that for me the way is like the weasel’s: open to time and death painlessly, noticing everything, remembering nothing, choosing the given with a fierce and pointed will.
—Living Like Weasels
Thank you Nikki, for sending me those words the other night. For turning me on to Annie’s writing, again. Now, I know I’m ready.