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  • David Carlson

336 She turned to the sunlight, shook her yellow head and whispered to her neighbor; Winter is dead

Day 336 Monday, February 15th, 2021

She turned to the sunlight, shook her yellow head and whispered to her neighbor; Winter is dead

Last night Patti, Enid, and Sandy shared stories of their love for daffodils -- the first blooms to come from the winter ground, even pushing through the late snows and cold rains. They are the first signs that life is returning, that there is hope for Spring and the abundance of Summer.

Jay found the first bloom and delivered it to Patti in a bud vase. Could any story be more perfect or more romantic for a Valentine's Day? That first fresh daffodil lit up their home and their hearts whether or not the rain came down. "Daffodils in a green bowl and let it snow if it will."

As Madelieine L'Engle writes: " Life is the greatest gift that could ever be conceived ... A daffodil pushing up through the dark earth to the spring, knowing somehow deep in its roots that spring and light and sunshine will come, has more courage and more knowledge of the value of life than any human being I've met." A little dark perhaps but I love the phrase "knowing somehow deep in its roots that spring and light and sunshine will come." I feel the same way about our beloved community. Spring and Light and Sunshine, all gifts of the magnificent divine breath will come...

“A daffodil doesn’t strive to impress anyone. It doesn’t struggle to be different than a rose. It doesn’t have to. It is different. And there’s room in the garden for every flower. You didn’t have to struggle to make your face different than anyone else’s on earth. It just is. You are unique because you were created that way. Look at little children in kindergarten. They’re all different without trying to be. As long as they’re unselfconsciously being themselves, they can’t help but shine." ― Marianne Williamson

As we look at ourselves on ZOOM we realize that we too can't help but shine. We are all so different but so much the same, united in kinship and love.

Who are the gardeners in our lives? For me it was my mother who tried to encourage flowers from the adobe and harsh sun of New Mexico. And I think of her as Leo Buscaglia thinks of his father "To this day I cannot see a bright daffodil, a proud gladiola or a smooth eggplant without thinking of Papa. Like his plants and trees, I grew up as a part of his garden. " We are all part of this amazing garden. Enjoy today.

"I could hear you, talking to the daffodils and tulips, whispering to the fairies that lived inside their petals. Each separate flower had a different family inside it.”

― Lucy Christopher, Stolen: A Letter to My Captor

I Wandered Lonely as a Cloud

I wandered lonely as a cloud

That floats on high o'er vales and hills,

When all at once I saw a crowd,

A host, of golden daffodils;

Beside the lake, beneath the trees,

Fluttering and dancing in the breeze.

Continuous as the stars that shine

And twinkle on the milky way,

They stretched in never-ending line

Along the margin of a bay:

Ten thousand saw I at a glance,

Tossing their heads in sprightly dance.

The waves beside them danced; but they

Out-did the sparkling waves in glee:

A poet could not but be gay,

In such a jocund company:

I gazed—and gazed—but little thought

What wealth the show to me had brought:

For oft, when on my couch I lie

In vacant or in pensive mood,

They flash upon that inward eye

Which is the bliss of solitude;

And then my heart with pleasure fills,

And dances with the daffodils.



Something Special: An NPR Tiny Desk Concert with Gregory Porter

Gregory Porter's healing soul music sends a message of compassion, and he's got a baritone voice that resonates love. When Porter visited NPR, we'd just learned that our colleague, photojournalist David Gilkey, had been killed while working on a story for NPR in Afghanistan. When Porter began singing the calmly beautiful "No Love Dying," he may not have known how much it would mean to us. Yet this song of compassion and hope, from his Grammy-winning 2013 album Liquid Spirit, was just what we'd needed.

Porter and pianist Chip Crawford continued their thoughtful, entrancing set with "Take Me To The Alley" (the title track to Porter's new album), a song about how we treat and think about those who live on society's margins. Closing this Tiny Desk concert is "Don't Be A Fool," another new song of love, loyalty and trust. For us, Porter's set provided a timely reminder that we can all use comfort, counsel and guidance — and that music can be serious and heartwarming without losing its sense of wonder and delight.

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