Thoroughly Alive

We must hunger after the beautiful and the good...



Oh, the craziness of the conference season. I'm back home after three weeks away, and today I'm doing my best to defeat my mountainous backlog of unanswered emails. You see, I must have Saturday free. A blizzard is expected to lay siege to the mountains early that morning and I'll need every hour of that wondrous sort of day for countless cups of tea, the reading of my newest stack of books, and the tromping through wild and windy hills. Blizzard make for festival days.

However. I cannot neglect this friendly space for one more day. I've been storing up things I wanted to share, so today you get a this and that, tidbits from the road sort of post.

First, The Old Schoolhouse Magazine asked me to write an article on the value of libraries in the making of lifelong learners. You can read the online version here: A Few Good Books

Second, my brilliant brother Nate has begun work on what I think will be a poignant and powerful movie. The name? Confessions of a Prodigal Son. I would love it if you would watch the trailer he has  crafted below. And if you are captivated by it, as I was, perhaps you'll take a glance here at his Kickstarter campaign (only 24 days left!) and consider supporting him as he gets this thing off the ground. Nate is a great lover of people and a soul who chases hard after God and this movie comes straight from his lively heart.


Third and last (for now), I found this poem by Gerard Manley Hopkins. I thought I knew most of his work, but somehow I missed this one. Since I did a good bit of wandering in the woods when I was on the east coast and went on treasure hunts for crocuses and daffodils, this spoke my joyous mood. I'm glad the quickening of the year is soon to be upon us.


By Gerard Manley Hopkins

Nothing is so beautiful as Spring –
   When weeds, in wheels, shoot long and lovely and lush;
   Thrush’s eggs look little low heavens, and thrush
Through the echoing timber does so rinse and wring
The ear, it strikes like lightnings to hear him sing;
   The glassy peartree leaves and blooms, they brush
   The descending blue; that blue is all in a rush
With richness; the racing lambs too have fair their fling.
What is all this juice and all this joy?
   A strain of the earth’s sweet being in the beginning
In Eden garden. – Have, get, before it cloy,
   Before it cloud, Christ, lord, and sour with sinning,
Innocent mind and Mayday in girl and boy,
Most, O maid’s child, thy choice and worthy the winning.