Tag Archives: Thoreau

My life has been the poem

National Poetry Month, Day 14 // “Life is what happens to you while you’re busy making other plans,” John Lennon sang in “Beautiful Boy.” The song was recorded in 1980, but the phrase was a variation of one printed in 1957 in the “Quotable Quotes” column of Reader’s Digest. I don’t know how long before […]

Lifting the angel latch

“The secret of happiness,” Socrates said, “is not found in seeking more, but in developing the capacity to enjoy less.” Tradition holds that when a person desired to enter a monastery, he would stand on the threshold, strip naked, and plead for admission, upon which he would be given new clothing appropriate to the new […]

So I praise what comes

For fifty-two years I’ve been gainfully employed, thirty-six of them as a parish pastor. Now it’s time to stop pushing my particular barn and muck out its stables. On July 1, I will officially retire and start giving better attention to cultivating these few cubic feet of flesh. The years have held their common mix of […]

Time to saunter

“When we walk, we naturally go to the fields and woods: What would become of us, if we walked only in a garden or a mall?” wondered Henry David Thoreau (“Walking,” The Atlantic, May 1862). When I started to reread his article today, I wondered how he could sit still to write all those words […]