The Patience of Ordinary Things

Wych Hazel AKA Witch Hazel
Wych Hazel AKA Witch Hazel

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 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

Being a bit pushed for time and mind space to write posts it’s so good to have some blog contributions to keep the boat afloat. Well I hope I can be delicate and fragrant, as the Wych Hazel is, under the stress and strain of these in-between times.

Between Winter
and Spring
between now and
what’s up-ahead.

Be patient O ordinary things
be patient with us
as we wriggle and chomp
our ordinary days

Thanks to Diane in Victoria, Canada for the poem and to Mark in the UK for the photograph. He writes thus:
The witch hazel in our front garden blossoms in late January / early February. Although everyone writes it ‘witch’ hazel, it’s actually ‘wych’ (as in ‘wych elm’). ‘Wych’ derives from an ancient word meaning pliant, or pliable, and related to ‘weak’. But these fragile petals are unhurt by frost or snow, and on the coldest days they give out a delicate and lovely fragrance. I expect you could work up a teaching from that!
Hope you’re hale and hearty.

Pliable? “Able to adjust readily to different conditions”
A strength.

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4 thoughts on “The Patience of Ordinary Things”

  1. This post reminded me of a verse from the Tao Te Ching:

    While alive, the body is soft and pliant
    When dead, it is hard and rigid
    All living things, grass and trees,
    While alive, are soft and supple
    When dead, become dry and brittle
    Thus that which is hard and stiff
    is the follower of death
    That which is soft and yielding
    is the follower of life
    Therefore, an inflexible army will not win
    A strong tree will be cut down
    The big and forceful occupy a lowly position
    While the soft and pliant occupy a higher place

  2. A wonderful post this time around…as we look forward to sunnier days and the return of warmth. Indeed poetry feeds the soul and mind as it has this day for me. Thanks all.

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