From a friend, last week, at Madonna House in Combermere, Ontario: “The Loons and the Great Blue Heron have returned from the south. The maple sap has quit running and the maple trees are budding. Yesterday there was a work bee to take the leaves off the flower beds because the crocuses have just started […]
When journalist John Hersey arrived in Japan, over a year after the dropping of the bombs, he was staggered by what he found. A mother who’d clung to her dead infant daughter until the body started to decompose. Human beings who had been vaporized, leaving only shadows on the ground or walls. Residents, desperate to rebuild, who were still coming across severed limbs and charred corpses.
St. Paul fell off his horse, but Christ comes in the form of a lamb, a dove, a heron. That’s not to say he’s always gentle. But he’s often gentlest when we’ve been doing terrible violence to ourselves and others.
At first she stayed mostly with friends and, along the way, experienced unexpected healing. “My core wound is the belief that I have to earn love. But everywhere I went, people would say, ‘Don’t leave. Just move in.’ ‘You don’t have to earn love,’ the Lord was telling me. ‘You already are enough.’ ”
His capacity to conjure landscape is alone astounding. Add to that an astonishingly wide-ranging grasp of geography, geology, natural history, cartography, and literature. Throw in the fact that he’s no mere scholar or armchair philosopher: every book is grounded in his willingness to take on the physical hardship of mountain climbing, hiking, camping, sailing, and tramping. But what makes Macfarlane sublime is the aching longing for a lost Eden that sounds like a bass note beneath all his work.
Advent, as always, has been packed with emotion. I become over-excited, awaiting the birth of the Christ child so eagerly that my sleep is thrown off. With Daylight Savings Time, my circadian rhythm naturally leans more toward both early nights and early mornings. I love waking in the dark, lighting the beeswax candles, opening the […]