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Friday, April 01, 2005

Back to the Basics

As you may have noticed, before my long and apparently spring break-induced absence (for which I offer my most profuse apologies) I made a great many "Hey, here's a poem" type of posts. Now, while I have absolutely nothing against such posts and find great worth in them personally, I feel that this small semblence of a blog seems to be lacking something that perhaps it once comments that aren't simply the "wow, that was nice. I really liked that" kind of comment that does wonders for my self-confidence (and are part of the reason you had so darn many of those poem posts and which have begun to turn my ego into a slathering, monstrous beast of nigh epic proportions that threatens to consume us all and all the alchohol in the house. I don't know why egos like booze, but apparently they just do). So yes, the ol' girl needs something to revitalize her, to bring her back to life. Thus I have decided to go back to my roots and to what I do best: rambling incoherently. And so, let us ramble together, you and I, in a dance of words that shall take us lightly around the universes deepest mysteries and its greatest trifles as we spin around in the rain of our own thoughts and flights of fancy. Where shall we go tonight? Don't ask me. I just write these things. We shall go where ever the wind carries us I suppose....

So after my Holland team meeting earlier tonight and after a beautiful drive through the rain-washed night I arrived home to discover that there was a cloud in my driveway. Not a very large cloud mind you, but a cloud nonetheless. Further inspection revealed that it was not so much that there was a cloud in my driveway as there was a cloud in my front yard (which was actually the edge of the cloud in my neighbors yard, but we don't like to talk about them or their satanically possessed, evil dog who thirsts for my father's blood). Now, when I say cloud you may be thinking I mean a light conglomeration of mist tendrils floating about above the ground. You would, however, be greatly mistaken. When I say cloud, I mean cloud. I had a cloud sitting in my yard. I could not see beyond the edges of my yard below about six feet above the ground, and as I stood in the middle of my yard under the pale light of the moon I would not have been surprised in the least if an army of blue-painted Scottish warriors had slowly taken form in front of me as the strode out of the mists (in slow motion and accompanied to dramatic orchestral music nonetheless). There is something hauntingly beautiful about the mists though, about the moonlit fog that rests quietly upon the brow of the earth. The way the light gets caught in the air and held there in muted tones of pale softness....the way the darkening whiteness wraps around you and everything like a warm frost and then there is stillness....such a stillness that steals your breath for fear of breaking it...if there is magic in this world, and there is, then it is found on foggy nights beneath a cool and gentle moon....I have slowly discovered that I have a somewhat large capacity for appreciating beauty (it's in all of us really). I look around and if I take the time, I can see some little shard of beauty everywhere. Now my dad's a real sucker for vista points. When we're on a road trip or we're off driving somewhere on scenic road, he's bound to pull over somewhere over-looking some gorgeous spot where we will stay for a while, take some pictures, he'll tell a story from his youth either about the place we're viewing or about a place very similar to it, and then we'll drive on. Now I love great views. I'm not particularly one for cityscapes, but I still remember standing on the peak of a mountain in the Rockies and just looking around, out across the land so far below out to the shadowy wall of the approaching storm and its robe of rain. There is great beauty in that, and in the spectacular that our world has to offer, but there is also beauty in the things we tend to pass by. Most nights we think of having a cloud on the road as a nuisance and a danger, what with not being able to see but three feet of road in front of us, but if we only slow down and look, we find the beauty. We see not how the fog obscures our vision, but how it frosts the dark world around us and how we seem to find light shining through it in the most unlikely of places. Every morning I drive to school, I look out at the building as I walk towards it and most mornings I see something akin to a prison with brick trim and a green color scheme inside, but then there's that rare morning that I have come to look for when I look out at that school and I see the beams of the morning sun reaching out to it, caressing it and bursting forth from the clouds to shune upon it and it alone and I see not simply my school and the drudgery that may be associated with it, but I see the beauty of a promise, and of hope. I look at people and I find that I have a tendency to see the beauty in them in spite of the faults, and believe me there is greater beauty by far in each single life that inhabits this earth than there is in all the universe. Maybe it's something to do with being an encourager that helps me to see the beauty in people, but it is there regardless, in all of us. All it takes is an open heart to see it (although a helping hand from the Father doesn't hurt. Not at all). It is a gift to be sought after with fervent prayer to be able to see the beauty in the ones who hurt us, in the ones who we long to hate. It may seems a strange gift, but it is one of the greatest we can receive, for it break our hearts and heals them through the breaking so they can be saved...we are a people made to thirst for beauty and, when we find it, to drink it deeply and give glory to the Beautiful One who made it for us. I just think that we need to stop more often and breathe, and in the moment of that breath see around us all the great beauty of our lives and of our Father, and then breathe again...and know that life is good.

Take care of yourselves and God bless.
Sleep well.


Blogger Kim said...

The Ben blog is back!
Oh, I love driving in the mist. and I love, love, love climbing on top of Mountains and looking all around. I did that last week in Wytheville and we looked over the whole town and I saw where Mr. Ritch goes to work and where Ryan goes to college and stuff. Way cool.

1:19 PM  
Anonymous Heather (fuller) said...

Hi Ben,
I made my way to your blog via your posts on Jo's and George's blog. I felt the need to explain my presence :-)
Your "incoherent rambling" as you called it was...well...the best word to describe it is "beautiful"- a rather redundant description I know, considering the topic of your rambling. But truly, that was lovely and thought provoking and breathtaking all at once. I was once trying to describe to someone how I experience the world and I think you've summed it up the best when you said- "I have a somewhat large capacity for appreciating beauty". Yes, I believe you do. It was wonderful to hear you put words on the way I too so often experience life. I think when we recognise that kind of beauty in the world, we've stumbled upon the fingerprint of the eternal that was left on this mortal world.

1:25 PM  
Blogger gelfling said...

wow, that was nice. I really liked that

...teehee :D

hm.. i think you've got some explaining to do in regards to that thing that was not a guilt trip.. hm..

1:26 PM  
Blogger heartlikeaglass said...

hmmm. funny. in the backing off from the poetries, you have fallen (inadvertently?) into your lovely poetically-written prose... (:

12:35 AM  
Blogger PlushToy said...

Yeah, I know....ain't I a stinka?

1:23 AM  
Blogger ross said...

hello ben from , nc i have made my way to your little universe of ramblings by way of my blog actually , becuase you posted a comment there and i felt the need to you know return the "favor" haha , well your entry was very well written and if thats a rambling , well my ramblings are dirt on the ground , under the cloud that was in your driveway/yard/neighbors wow thats great , that would be awesome to find a cloud in my driveway because that dosen't happen very much in Texas, well actually it never has happened to me , but I did find a $100 bill on the ground once wiich is cool, but compeltley off subject and does not nearly supress your cloud, oh the sweet sweet sadness of my boring life wow...this a long post , well done...

9:28 AM  

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