270. Nature looks dead in winter because her life is gathered into her heart. ~Hugh Macmillan

She (nature) withers the plant down to the root
that she may grow it up again fairer and stronger.
She calls her family together
within her inmost home to prepare them for being
scattered abroad upon the face of the earth.
~Hugh Macmillan


Early morning light steals across straw-colored grass and slowly warms the biting chill of a February dawn.  Splinters of sunlight glisten and sparkle as they move over the garden’s frost-laden, bare bones.  From my vantage point inside I can make out a lone, reddish leaf, not quite ready to be a memory, clinging tenaciously to a branch in the ornamental cherry tree.  It reminds me that a wellspring of life lies dormant below in nature’s “inmost home” where “her life is gathered into her heart.”  My attention is diverted next to the dogs I hear barking up and down the alleyway.  The feral cats must be on the move in search of food.  Then birds begin to show up at the feeders and high above their flutterings I see the first squirrels running the high wires.  Soon birdsong breaks morn’s silence, and lights start coming on in the once darkened houses around us.  The neighborhood is coming alive and gearing up for the day, but no, not I.   Since retirement I’ve been able to linger as long as I like most mornings and from my well-situated chair watch the days and the changing seasons pass over my yard.  Nature’s recurrent patterns and rhythms have always comforted me, and it’s delightful to be able to partake of her daily feasts.  Though evidence of God’s grace is readily apparent in the spectacular moments of life, perhaps sweeter are the ones ferreted out of day to day, ordinary living.  These are blessings that are not unlike the contrast of a mass of diamonds scattered out on a dark piece of velvet in which all are lovely but none seems particularly more special than the other and that of a singular diamond’s loveliness on the same piece of fabric which in its aloneness is brilliantly stunning.

For the word of the Lord is right and true; He is faithful in all He does.  ~Psalm 33:4  ✝

11 thoughts on “270. Nature looks dead in winter because her life is gathered into her heart. ~Hugh Macmillan

  1. Pingback: 270. Nature looks dead in winter because her life is gathered into her heart. ~Hugh Macmillan | Sacred Touches

  2. This is a great post. I’ve noticed you have written several times about what you see out your window from your chair. I’d love to see a post about your chair and show us a pic from the inside out. God Bless!


  3. I must say that the ability to linger in the morning hours has been one of the greatest treasures I relish since retiring. When teaching I was up at 5 and at school by 6:45—till dark thirty — I love the ability of lingering—-thank you for sharing the birth of your mornings—
    love to you—cookie


  4. Natalie, what a lovely read this is. I would so love to drop in and have tea with you and watch the birds together in gentle quietness. This reminds me to appreciate the “diamond” I may find in each winter day. This chilly morning, when we were out walking, I enjoyed a single eagle soaring in a blue sky. Of course I tried to photograph it – it’s a tad blurry but my memory of it is not.

    Blessings ~ Wendy


    • Wow, when you said you were going to get caught up you meant it missy. Other than the aches and pains of an aging and worn body, it is idyllic, Amelia. I worked for nearly 40 years (only 31 were in teaching) and it’s nice to own my own time now. God is good, life is good, and I am happy with what I am and who I am. I hope one day you find yourself in an idyllic situation as well. God bless you too, my friend, and thanks for all the comments tonight. Hugs and love to you, Natalie 🙂


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