Tamara Willems

acts of restoring…

As I sit, watching the birds, most especially the orioles
that have gathered, holding on to how wondrous was
the spotting of this week’s special visitor
a brown thrasher,
and noticing that the tadpoles are beginning to sprout
I find myself also working through
this morning’s bubbling up of frustration (again)
and resignation (again)
that has me thinking much about the lessons of
compassion, being gentle with things and

in the garden, we are desperately in need of rain
where those closest to the ground have begun just
laying themselves down
and most everything else is drooping and
areas where grass still grows,
crunches underfoot
it is July after all, and as it is
we are often prone to these arid stretches
I am not one to fight against nature’s rhythms
and don’t spend time hopelessly running the water
trying to
when I know how things adapt
to conditions
and every day bear witness to the magic of

the other condition the gardens (and I) are suffering
is a very large, stubborn and strong-willed
the likes of which, I have not met
where nothing is sacred, where very few boundaries
or honoured
and most everything in sight
has been
quite soundly

where again, the gardens in their infinite wisdom
although broken and bent
leaves ripped and ravaged, stems torn from the ground
and flower heads stomped on
still somehow manages to shine on in whatever state
it finds itself in
the light still insists on touching it
in just such a way
as to draw the eye to a gentle, kindly sort of

yet where today I
am finding it difficult to recognize
the same in myself
the number of times I have thrown in the towel
exasperation, defeat
I cannot do this, with this stubborn (sometimes snarling) fellow…
today I wonder, how I managed to have four children
each, seventeen months apart
with great patience and gentleness
a great deal of the time on my own
when suddenly I
so strong

I have never lived with any kind of perfection tendencies
as to torment myself with fret over the chaos
(in the gardens or otherwise)
I embody gratefulness
for the bright spots
but today, just now…

he sits for a few minutes to listen,
tries in some way to pick words of a calming
sense of support
but he has to get to work

so I sit, watching the birds
dogs asleep at my feet, and try kindly
to bring myself back
to a mindful
place of

resting in faith I suppose, that a happy median will indeed come
where all nature of wildlife here
will learn
to live
in the continued practice

of lessons, of compassion
of patience
of growing, of

in living, in loving, in breathing
and noticing

the simple every day acts
of restoring ♥

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