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The World is Made in Belonging

credit: Sofie Laier Henriksen

credit: Sofie Laier Henriksen


It’s over a hundred degrees today. Apart from a bit of time spent watering some seedlings early this morning, I’ve been indoors hiding from the heat. Even the dogs show no interest in venturing out.

I find myself appreciating the stillness and familiarity of my indoor surroundings. But it’s more than gratitude for a cool haven. I find myself resting in a feeling of comfort to do with the way that everything is holding me, and holding everything else together.

I notice how everything seems to belong. My world and my body are in a continual relating, that I can only half grok with my mind. It precedes the mind. And goes beyond it. Perhaps I’m talking about what Cormac McCarthy calls “the joinery”. Everything necessarily belongs to everything else. And when I can become aware of this and settle into it, I find that it is beautiful and pleasing.

I am rambling. But I know a good way out of it. Pat Schneider writes about such things in this excellent poem. The plainness of her style, which always delights me, is so fitting here.


The Patience of Ordinary Things

It is a kind of love, is it not?
How the cup holds the tea,
How the chair stands sturdy and foursquare,
How the floor receives the bottoms of shoes
Or toes. How the soles of feet know
Where they’re supposed to be.
I’ve been thinking about the patience
Of ordinary things, how clothes
Wait respectfully in closets
And soap dries quietly in the dish,
And towels drink the wet
From the skin of the back.
And the lovely repetition of stairs.
And what is more generous than a window?

~ Pat Schneider


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