“In a way winter is the real spring, the time when the inner things happen, the resurge of nature.”
~ Edna O’Brien
“It seems to me we can never give up longing and wishing while we are thoroughly alive, there are certain things we feel to be beautiful and good, and we must hunger after them.”
~ George Eliot
“He who limps still walks.”
~ Stanislaw Lece
During the summer, one night, I was riding my bike home. Though it was late in the evening the sun was still shining. I love those kinds of evenings. I love to be out and about on my bike late in the evening in the summer. I was heading home and decided, oddly, to stop at the bank’s drive-through area to check my balance with my bank card. Oddly, because I didn’t usually use the machine at my nearest bank, at least I hadn’t yet since moving.
I steered my bike into the bank’s parking lot and saw a birdie laying on the asphalt. It was trying to get away, trying to fly, but it couldn’t. I thought that a car had turned from the street into the parking lot, going fast, and ran into the little birdie as it was flying, hitting it.
It was laying right where the next car would have driven. So I decided to get off my bike and move the bird. I wanted it to be safe from another car. I sat nearby and waited and hoped that it was just stunned and would recover.
After a couple of minutes I decided to take the little birdie and hold it in my hands. It was small and black, with one purple feather on each wing. I settled it in my lap and kept touching it.
I tried not to scare it, but it was a wild thing and I realized that it could be scared of me and that my presence could make things worse for the birdie. It didn’t seem to be overly scared. I was glad. I didn’t want to just walk away from it.
I wanted to make things better. But I couldn’t make the birdie be well, probably no one, at that moment, could have. It was hard for me, but it was more important for me to be there with the little birdie than anything else at that moment. So I stayed.
I don’t know if I made a difference for the little birdie, if I was any comfort, or if being near another being was helpful for birdie. I just know that those were my intentions. I don’t know if I made a difference for the little birdie. But it made a difference in my life.
“Listen to your life. See if for the fathomless mystery it is. In the boredom and pain of it, no less than in the excitement and gladness: touch, taste, smell your way to the holy and hidden heart of it, because in the final analysis all moments are key moments.”
~ Frederick Beuchner
“Yield not thy neck
To fortune’s yoke, but let thy dauntless mind
Still ride in triumph over all mischance.
In the difficult are the friendly forces, the hands
that work on us.”
~ Rainer Maria Rilke
“My friends have made the story of my life. In a thousand ways they have turned my limitations into beautiful privileges, and enabled me to walk serene and happy in the shadow cast by my deprivation.”
~ Helen Keller