A Nugget from Marcus Aurelius

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I have recently discovered the Meditations of Marcus Aurelius. In a modern world not everything he says has full resonance but this jumped off the page at me:

From Book 4 –

“So one should pass through this tiny fragment of time in tune with nature, and leave it gladly, as an olive might fall when ripe, blessing the earth which bore it and grateful to the tree which gave it growth.”

Very best wishes for a greener earth – Denny Bradbury 💚

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Early Morning Thoughts

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Village Life – 21st Century

Our lawn is not big its slopes to the field where two wild horses run;
its surrounded by trees and the bindweed just grows;
but today the majestic and cocky and lone
pheasant decided to call it his home;
he strutted and looked and then strutted some more
then caught sight of himself in a mirror
what’s more he decided that the fellow
looking out at the world
was an arrogant cove as he didn’t retreat
he just copied whatever he did in a way
that is both annoying and threatening to say
that he wasn’t at all in awe of a rival
but to rid his new place of this interloper
meant survival;
around and around did the first pheasant go
then came back to look and there he was even so
he decided to leave and go back to the lawn
where he found bits of food in this cold light of morn;
this February frost was no good for his searching
but the little he found was all right for now,
it was warm and ’twas sheltered so that was a bonus
and no resident feline to give him a scare;
he thought with what little brain was in motion
that this was a good place to wait for the spring.

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Bright February sun, still weak from winter, does its best to warm the road, damp from melting frost.

Bare trees stark against the pale morning sky hold within them the power to entrance and bring joy when finally they let forth their blossom and nascent leaves, tender and so beautifully green, a feast to the eye.

Early dustmen drag wheelie bins across the tarmac of the road, clearing away our debris, what civilisation!

Neatly we dispose then go to buy more plastic wrapped carrots for our own convenience – then latterly we are brought up with a shock as we see on the news endless aquatic acres of plastic in the pure blue white of the antarctic, bombarded as we are with pictures of sea turtles mistaking floating plastic bags for jellyfish, dying whales with guts full of plastic pebbles, responsibility burns in on me as I sit and contemplate spring.

Newly acquired pheasant on the lawn still struts his stuff safe in the knowledge of a protected space.

Are we like the pheasant – complacently living in our own wall of comfort and safety that we are daily blind to how we use the earth – all sceptered isles set in dazzling seas surrounded by murderous miles of floating debris?

Let the activists’ voices ring in our ears and bombard us daily with unpalatable pictures and beat us regularly about our conscience until we all see that we are capable of being other than we are.

DennyBradbury© All good wishes for plastic free oceans and a peaceful world.

Candlemas

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Light the winter away and look forward to the light of spring and all the renewal that comes with it. We need to have the down time of winter so that spring can bring us such joy in all its splendour.

Candlemas
(Purify and pray)

Present the child and purify,
purify and pray;
pray that all the prejudice
goes out from us today.

Light a candle, light one more,
light a thousand strong;
so we can see in darkest night
and right will conquer wrong.

Present the child and purify,
purify and pray;
pray that all injustices
are broken down today.

Light a candle, light one more,
light can do no wrong;
it lights the darkest corner,
illuminates our song.

The song of hope and faith and love;
The song of praise and awe,
that through winter’s bitter cold
the sun will rise once more.

Present the child and purify
purify and pray;
pray as we hold our candles high
that all will find their way.

Denny Bradbury© with all good wishes for a peaceful end to winter

Thoughts from Rilke

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As is my wont, I happened to pick up my book of Rilke poetry and browse. I love to randomly choose a page which leads me to ponder on thoughts from a great poet. From the beginning of human time on this Earth, as soon as the need for food and shelter became less immediate we have searched the skies and our surroundings for a ‘spiritual truth’. This is what I believe to be in Rilke’s mind:

Does it exist, though, Time the destroyer?
When will it scatter the tower on the resting hill?
This heart, the eternal gods eternal enjoyer,
when shall the Demiurge ravish and spill?

Are we really such trembling breakable
things as Destiny tries to pretend?
Does childhoods’ promise, deep, unmistakable,
down in the roots, then, later, end?

Ah mutability’s sceptre!
out through the simple accepter
you, like a vapour, recede.

We, though we wax but for waning,
fill none the less for remaining
powers a celestial need.

I wish you all joy in your search for your ‘spiritual truth’.
Very best wishes – Denny Bradbury

Love peace and joy at Christmas

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It may seem hackneyed to many to wish everyone joy and peace at Christmas. Of course I wish people joy all year round but the season can focus our attention on higher things rather than the battle to keep making ends meet and feeding the family.

Whatever your circumstances I hope that you have what you wish for – at least in part – it may be that it is never good to have all that we desire.

Christmas Quatrain

Celebrate God’s gift of joy

above the transient broken toy,

Dedicate these festive days

to loving kindness in countless ways.

Denny Bradbury© May you be safe and well and find joy this Christmas.