Looking for order. I suppose that’s where I am just now–trying to establish position and purpose in the spinning cosmos of time and place, of the creative and necessary, the urge and the obligation. And I take my clues where I can find them.
“What’s Dumpa taking a picture of?” Abby asked incredulously as her grandfather lagged behind the walkers on the WCU campus Sunday afternoon, wandering off into the sidewalk landscaping.
“It’s the big bang the day after creation” he told her as he peered through the Hubble telescope toward the meticulously ordered plantings in the mulch.
And of course, it was simply a flowering kale. But of course, it was also more than that.
To see a World in a Grain of Sand
And a Heaven in a Wild Flower,
Hold Infinity in the palm of your hand
And Eternity in an hour. — William Blake
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Fred First holds masters degrees in Vertebrate Zoology and physical therapy, and has been a biology teacher and physical therapist by profession. He moved to southwest Virginia in 1975 and to Floyd County in 1997. He maintains a daily photo-blog, broadcasts essays on the Roanoke NPR station, and contributes regular columns for the Floyd Press and Roanoke's Star Sentinel. His two non-fiction books, Slow Road Home and his recent What We Hold in Our Hands, celebrate the riches that we possess in our families and communities, our natural bounty, social capital and Appalachian cultures old and new. He has served on the Jacksonville Center Board of Directors and is newly active in the Sustain Floyd organization. He lives in northeastern Floyd County on the headwaters of the Roanoke River.
I myself just quoted Blake’s a world in a grain of sand in a post the other day:
Coincidence or cosmic convergence?
Beautiful post, by the way.
Remember that old song “Searchin’ “? I’ve been searchin’ for you, Fred, and I just found you again! I’m happy.