This month's collection of tidbits truly is a potpourri. No particular theme, just whatever has caught my eye and mind. The first two quotations, though, really hit home, since lately I've been spending more time than usual staying in one place and sitting still.
We spend most of our time and energy in a kind of horizontal thinking. We move along the surface of things . . . [but]there are times when we stop. We sit still. We lose ourselves in a pile of leaves or its memory. We listen and breezes from a whole other world begin to whisper.
-- James Carroll, novelist
When we commit to a particular place, a certain element of choice is removed. We are free to dig in, and allow ourselves to be mentored by the life around us. We begin to see the world whole instead of fractured. Long-term strategies replace short-term gains. Routine opens the door to creativity.
-- Terry Tempest Williams, in The Open Space of Democracy
Readers have been changed by books--it is not such a large step to think that the world could be changed as well.
-- Sharon Rab, founder, Dayton Literary Peace Prize, quoted in Poets & Writers magazine, May/June 2017
There is a theory which states that if ever anybody discovers exactly what the universe is for and why it is here, it will instantly disappear and be replaced by something even more bizarre and inexplicable. There is another theory which states that this has already happened.
-- Douglas Adams, author
Ideas are contagious; emotions are contagious; hope is contagious; courage is contagious.
-- Rebecca Solnit, writer, historian and activist
Sooner or later we all discover that the important moments in life are not the advertised ones, not the birthdays, the graduations, the weddings, not the great goals achieved. The real milestones are less prepossessing. They come to the door of memory unannounced; stray dogs that amble in, sniff around a bit, and simply never leave.
-- Susan B. Anthony, social reformer and women's rights activist
Besides the noble art of getting things done, there is a nobler art of leaving things undone . . . The wisdom of life consists in the elimination of nonessentials.
-- Lin Yutang, Chinese writer and educator
Let mystery have its place in you; do not be always turning up your whole soil with the ploughshare of self-examination, but leave a little fallow corner in your heart ready for any seed the winds may bring.
-- Henri Frédéric Amiel, Swiss philosopher, poet and critic
Peace of mind comes piece by piece.
-- Message on a Yogi Tea bag tab
Written from the heart,
from the heart of the woods
Read the introduction to HeartWood here.
Nan Sanders Pokerwinski, a former journalist, writes memoir and personal essays, makes collages and likes to play outside. She lives in West Michigan with her husband, Ray.