Am becoming mildly obsessed with finding new Bible study accessories, which is sort of funny and ironic given my lack of holiness. Tempted by Eerdman's Bible Dictionary and the Harper Collins NSRV Study Bible. Found a website with samples of the NSRV study bible but I really think I'm overkilling with the study bibles. Ex-nay on it. I have copious notes already via the NABRE. So it's down to Eerdman's Bible Dictionary, 25% off this week at OliveTree.
Sunday morn I was off to church followed by eine kleine reading ("Coming Apart", presenting the present dystopia), followed by the unexpectedly early arrival of company and so instant flexibility was called for and the utopia of reading about dystopia was canned for a couple hours. I resumed the book later in the sunburn-capable sun. A 20-minute workout and a beer followed, after which an anchoring in the hammock. So now I recline, cocooned by a rural coventry of varied trees, of fine dark green pines and parrot-green shrubs. It's a good place to be, especially with a beer.
And the day is downright summery. The perfect blend of weekend is a blah-humbug chill Saturday followed by a sunny and effervescent Sunday. The best of both worlds. Surrendered to the peace and quiet, I look over the sun-spackled greens and feel a nostalgia for things I never experienced. Or maybe it's for half-experiences, for time spent in the haze of only semi-awareness, of only semi-presence.
Too often I think the key to life is to love reading, as if reading will save me. I look at it as a savior and crutch from boredom and loss. As a fine accompaniment to old age when you can't do anything else. And yet even reading can't be depended on - only God. God alone. Do I forget?
I love the dappled sun against the fence. If the fence serves little purpose now - no longer a hedge against the nosy neighbor who's since moved - it still serves as a fine backdrop on the occasion of tree-filtered sun. It still serves, like a Donald Hall book, as a delimiter of beauty.
A solitary beer sits in the prefiguring sun and I wonder how fast I must consume to avoid it getting warm. I overlook the svelte curve of the landscape bend, the rich allusive nature of the hammock strings, the craggy bark of the poplar. The grass is freshly mown, giving it an especial attractiveness, a gleamy Greenness. The hammock swings slightly, representing the siren song of comfort. No wonder Jesus often said, "Awake!", for we long to rest, to sleep instead of pilgrimage, to bend the elbow rather than the knee.