I didn’t realize how badly I needed to bask in the beauty of nature. Today unexpectedly I found myself in an old city park surrounded by those giants of nature that have seen such longer life than I. It was one of our “adventures” as the kids like to call them.
We had already frequented a free tourist attraction available on MLK and were planning to proceed next to the local children’s museum, but the sun was shining and calling to us to stay outside and play. In Indiana, you savor a forty-four degree, sunny day in January. They are precious and few.
Everyone agreed to skip the children’s museum and to find an adventure, which turned out to be this old park. It was beautiful. It was an older park and frankly a bit run down, but I found the lack of man’s recent fiddling refreshing. We eventually found our way to the playground and the boys found other young lads with which to run and chase. The Beauty gravitated to the swings also as usual. We swung together for a bit and the words of Stevenson’s The Swing flitted through my mind.
How do you like to go up in a swing,
Up in the air so blue?
Oh, I do think it the pleasantest thing
Ever a child can do!
Up in the air and over the wall,
Till I can see so wide
Rivers and trees and cattle and all
Over the countryside-
Till I look down on the garden green,
Down on the roof so brown-
Up in the air I go flying again,
Up in the air and down!
Eventually, I found my way to an old wooden bench actually much more comfortable than the new ones that somehow are much more hard and rigid. I closed my eyes, felt the warmth on my face, breathed in the fresh air, and thanked God for it all. Oh, how I have missed just being outdoors, relishing in the delight of nature! Today, there was no hustle and bustle, I just sat there and breathed and took it all in. Ah, it was truly wonderful!
Just recently, I heard the bare trees of winter described as tree skeletons. This phrase for some reason just brings a smile to my face. So today, I looked all around me and savored the view of the majestic tree skeletons that surrounded me. They were beautiful. An interesting thing occurred, as I sat so small amongst these winter giants, somehow my soul was refreshed.
Our hearts are inclined to love and worship; and we become prepared by the quiet schooling of Nature to walk softly and do our duty towards man and towards God. CM Vol. 4, Book 2, p. 98.