July 22-B, 2022

North Shore 09/21/2006 Oil Paint Rendered — Lake Louise, Banff National Park
"The peace of wild things"
(Wendell Berry)
is found in letting things be what they are,
and not incessantly willing
things to be different than they are.
Life protests its surrender to life,
but it recognizes inevitability 
when it sees it 
and acquiesces to the circumstances
without holding grudges,
planning its revenge,
or endlessly bemoaning its plight
through resentment and depression
over eons and ages.

Rivers dry up.
Species go extinct.
Earthquakes and volcanoes
remake landscapes.
And nature works with what it has
to work with
to make the best of what's what
and that's that.

Nature takes everything in stride
and keeps going.
Dandelions grow through asphalt.
Dogwoods bend themselves out of shape
reaching for the light.
Nature does what it is here to do
any way it can.

Nature's mantra is 
"Here we are, now what?"
Life lives in the service of life
as long as life lasts,
with spirit, energy and vitality
all the way along the way,
looking for what can be done
with what is left to work with,
forever rising from the ashes
with heart for the work
yet to be done,
anyway, nevertheless, even so.


Published by jimwdollar

I'm retired, and still finding my way--but now, I don't have to pretend that I know what I'm doing. I retired after 40.5 years as a minister in the Presbyterian Church USA, serving churches in Louisiana, Mississippi and North Carolina. I graduated from Austin Presbyterian Theological Seminary, in Austin, Texas, and Northwestern State University in Natchitoches, Louisiana. My wife, Judy, and I have three daughters and five granddaughters within about twenty minutes from where we live--and are enjoying our retirement as much as we have ever enjoyed anything.

2 thoughts on “July 22-B, 2022

  1. Dear Jim, No need to reply to this. I didn’t want to add the link below to the comments on your column.¬†¬† I realize this is way too much information.¬† This is an example of the ADHD in action. I look forward to each of your daily emails and just want to thank you because your words help me try to navigate our current issues – I think I mentioned before that I have been diagnosed with ADHD and it is a constant deterrant to coping with politics I find interesting, but distressing – it’s hard to stay focused because I’m interested in so many issues of the day and try to follow them but get overwhelmed easily.¬† .¬†¬† For more than 10 years I handled the political action reports to the FEC (1979 – 1990) for Occidentall Petroleum (OXYPAC), under the direction of my boss .¬† At the time time I was stressed to the max and when I was laid off when Dr. Hammer died I began to rethink my political stance – I grew up with a Republican father who was totally involved in conspiracy theories and advocated the book “None Dare Call it Treason” about John Birch Society during the 1960s and even afterwards.¬† I had been a Republican and worked for Oxy for almost 20 years (1972 – 1991).¬† My boss was head of the Tax Department and signed Oxy’s tax returns for many many years.¬† When he was promoted to VP Corporate Affairs he became the liaison to our Washington office for tax legislation.¬† Within the context of this environment I was taught that Oxy utilized tax legislation and off shore corporations to avoid paying US Federal income taxes.¬† My boss was proud of this fact. Most of my rethinking of my stance about politics came from “gut level” responses to things I observed during my time at Oxy.¬† I had a “felt sense” that what was happening on the corporate level was wrong, wrong, wrong.¬† My Dad was VP Economic Development for the Bank of Hawaii for many years.¬† He made sure I was on the list to receive the Hillsdale College newsletter.¬† My Dad and my boss were steeped in the advocacy for “Corporate” America first before anything else.¬† Again, I had a “felt sense” – eventually – that there was something amiss with this kind of focused thinking and planning for legislation, etc. I was baptized and confirmed a Presbyterian.¬† I remember at age three, when we lived in¬† El Paso for a year, walking to church with my mother.¬† Our family was always involved in weekly church attendance and other activites.¬† My gut level feelings were informed by the the Sermon on the Mount, even as I began to join study circles to find other ways to think about religion.¬† Every day I have a visceral* reaction to the news. I try to stay current with the news of today, but I balance it out (I hope!) with your columns.¬† This column helped me try to put in perspective this particular depressing story (you may have seen it): Inside Trump ’25: A radical plan for Trump‚Äôs second term

    | | | | | |


    | | | | Inside Trump ’25: A radical plan for Trump‚Äôs second term

    Jonathan Swan

    Allies want to empower him to purge potentially thousands of civil servants. |



    *Definitions – VisceralDefinitions from¬†Oxford Languages¬†¬∑¬†Learn moreadjective – relating to the viscera.”the visceral nervous system” – relating to deep inward feelings rather than to the intellect.”the voters’ visceral fear of change”

    Sandy Roggerosandraroggero@sbcglobal.net


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