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Showing posts from February, 2019

A Poet's Journal: June 30th, 2014

June 30th, 2014

A 4-day hike in the Basque Mountains

Lying low upon the ground, breathing in the night air, and awakening to a slight chill, though it is the middle of summer, is enough for the body to regain its vitality.  It would be easy here for the mind to leave its thoughts to the scattered mist, but even if we tell ourselves that an unfettered freedom lies before us upon the trail, there is always something of our nagging and mundane lives following.  The contrast is too simple for us not to notice, and instead of feeling enlivened by it, there is the realization that we have not yet broken free from it all, but neither have we decided what we want to break free from.
A constellation arose on the door of our tent at night, and following it, the first rays of sun spread through our damp affairs with the enduring scent of heat--all of it though matters not unless one can see the place and the meaning it gives to his onward movements.
Douglas Thornton

A Poet's Journal: November 26th, 2013

November 26th, 2013

Some wither, some have the barest trace, and others are just beginning: this is the state of the autumn trees at the moment.  This is, however, not very interesting to know, but the value lies in recognition.  We may use the same language to describe people as well, but if we do not know their momentum; if we do not perceive the movement of their spirit from the outward motion of their bodies, it touches us not even if we had the knowledge of ten thousand men in front of us.  We open ourselves to the reality and the possibility of knowing something through appearance or intended purpose, but take as a sign for understanding the familiarity it brings to our own ideas.  Yet to know something is to respond to it, just as the colour of the sky responds to the inclination of the sun; for we are all speaking even if we pronounce not the slightest word, but it is only those who answer us that we care to talk to--and so it is with the autumn trees.
Douglas Thornton

A Poet's Journal: November 21st, 2013

November 21st, 2013

It is unfortunate to see idleness as negative; for it is a rare thing for one to admit that staring at a wall can bring our livelihood to its ultimate goal, and it is of no concern of ours with what way we occupy our time, as long as we can account for it and produce facts against the contrary.  Do your duty and live well, most of us will say, and the common turn of solitude shall withhold its obligations.  But there is an august reflection in all this: that we are far from ourselves when we would be most intimate, and the idleness we look upon with such offensive gaze, the dearest part of our most successful activity.
Douglas Thornton

A Poet's Journal: November 13th, 2013

November 13th, 2013

This morning a great flock of cranes came in from the ocean and passed inland to the hills; many seem to use this valley as a corridor when the winds are high though their passage lacks not a curious inspiration.  Fog and rain over the last few days have given way to sun, exposing the sudden change to autumn colours; the golden birches to the south are amongst the first to be perceived and admired.  One oak tree, which had taken on a beautiful pink colour last year, and held the sunlight so well, this year looks diseased, so that one would think it melancholic that the sun must shine.
Whatever the day, it is a singular occasion to remain indifferent to daily concerns, and gather within us an appreciation for what is unacknowledged.  It is often that we find ourselves being elicited to speak a certain way, but rare when we should have the chance to speak for ourselves.
Douglas Thornton

Seasons Of Mind Ebook Free!

To celebrate the release of the ebook of Seasons Of Mind, it will be offered free over the next three days to anyone willing to take the time to download it.  Please review it on Amazon if you have found it worthy.
Click here for the epub format (starting February 5th)
Or click here for the kindle format (starting Februrary 6th)
In the meantime, let the following excerpt from August 12th, 2011 of Seasons Of Mind take the place of supplication:
'This morning as I leaned against a rock in the pale of dawn, the soft flame and subtle heat of the sun grew upon my back, as if some giant overstepping the valley, and on the ground in front of me, against the increasing light, my shadow appeared within the very air of which a moment before gave no semblance of human being. The grandeur, or the deep, profound obscurity of things, that lay hidden in the mellow breath of time, wherein the center of our universe comes to completion, and the most important point of that now-revolving cycle of l…