On Having Misidentified A Wild Flower
By Richard Wilbur
A thrush, because I'd been wrong,
Burst rightly into song
In a world not vague, not lonely,
Not governed by me only.
back later, I hope.
and here I am, after another good day. I made a pastoral call this morning -- getting mileage out of my new white blazer, and very happy with the effect of the white jacket over black clerical shirt and slacks...
Mrs. B and I had a mutually satisfactory time talking about the poetry we remember and how different it sounds to us in our "old age"...and how grateful we are to have been made to learn so much by heart when we were younger.
This led on to reflections on the pastoral and homiletic utility of English poetry in ministry to seniors...how much they recognize, how much they remember -- I'm talking about things like Tennyson (In Memoriam and "Crossing the Bar") and Kipling and Browning and Leigh Hunt ("Abou ben Adhem").
It has been a very pastoral-visit kind of week -- this was the third -- and I have been writing thank-you notes, and I have a phone-call to make tomorrow -- then wallop the lections into submission for Sunday's sermon, and do the shopping and pre-prep for our students' supper on Sunday evening.
The sermon "series" is going well. I am working in part from Chrysostom's principles e.g. that Jesus ALWAYS knows EXACTLY what he is doing -- and that he is manoeuvring his auditory (sometimes a doubled one, disciples and crowd, or disciples and Syro-Phoenician woman) into seeing for themselves what they would resist if it were simply offered to them didactically. If there is a theme, it would be "Jesus is the Lord of Improv." (I have theatre-folks of great age and eminence in the congregation, and they leap about gleefully, within their limits, whenever I talk about the theatricality of the gospel stories. It is FUN!)
At the end of the day I had a good supper at home: a nice modest-sized piece of steak, a baked potato with a sliver of blue cheese, and a great wad of fresh spinach cooked helpless and anointed with balsamic vinegar. Introduced by a large bowl of salad -- as Peg Bracken said, it fills the stomach and tires the jaws, and that's all good.
Oh yes! a beautiful lunch with The Lady Father today, by way of celebrating BIRTHDAY!