Home is the best destination
Ian on Sunday
Many people go to the ends of the earth to find beauty. And certainly beauty can be found at the ends of the earth. The furthest end I have visited is Fiji and there I found one afternoon, when the conference I was attending had ended, a shadowy, green glade where immense trees grew amidst antique blocks of granite scarred by what seemed messages from the Gods. I was visiting a sacred place and there was an extraordinary, still, almost ominous beauty about it which I will always remember. That was a long way to go to catch that glimpse of the eternal.
But long excursions are not needed to discover beauty which often enough is there in your own backyard or not many miles beyond. A couple of hours out of home up the Essequibo there is enough beauty to last a lifetime without going anywhere else.
Sitting on the shore of that great river – and, believe me, it is a shore and not a bank – late evening time I know almost exactly what the poet Robinson Jeffers must have experienced in his home by the sea in California years ago and expressed in one of his most quiet, greatest lyrics:
The ocean has not been so quiet for a long while; five night-herons
Fly shorelong voiceless in the hush of the air
Over the calm of an ebb that almost mirrors their wings.
The sun has gone down, and the water has gone down
From the weed-clad rock, but the distant cloud-wall rises. The ebb whispers.
Great cloud-shadows float in the opal water.
Through rifts in the screen of the world pale gold gleams, and the evening
Star suddenly glides like a flying torch.
As if we had not been meant to see her; rehearsing behind
The screen of the world for another audience.
Peace and beauty at home is the best experience of all since it soaks every day of life with contentment.
When the moon grows big my wife and I place chairs under the trees in our garden to sit and watch the goddess of the night hold court amidst the flying clouds.
Think of all the thousands of years men and women have done this, looking in wonder at the moon come up tangled in clouds in company of a star or two – whether above the pyramids of Egypt or the slopes of the sacred mountains of …..To continue reading, login or subscribe now.