Feeling Poignant

I read Out of the Dust by Karen Hesse a couple weeks ago and haven't been able to get it out of my mind since. It's a quick read, entirely in free verse, and I highly recommend it. It's a little My Antonia, a little Sarah, Plain and Tall in flavor, and if you like historic fiction a la Grapes of Wrath, you will like this book. The part I started bawling at was her "Thanksgiving List" - all the simple and precious things she was grateful for even in the midst of tragedy and loss.

I also read a post about cherries today that got me thinking about the moments in our lives when everything seems to converge into a moment of appreciation, joy and gratiitude, just happiness at life, and how those moments are often inextricably connected with moments of pain, fear and loneliness but somehow made even more intensely beautiful because of the things that hurt.

These are the things I'm thinking about today, and can't really find adequate words, but I think I am grateful for the times that aren't perfectly wonderful as much as I'm grateful for the times that are. In fact, I don't think I would appreciate the joy without the sadness, or learn anything if life were constant bliss.

What do you think?


Anonymous said...

Thanks for the mention today Code Yellow and thank you for your poignant comments over at Antique Mommy as well. I thoroughly enjoy your blog. You are right in that the darkness defines the light. Since having a child, I've learned how important it is to dial in on those special moments and try to memorize and capture them.

Angela said...

I think you have a beautiful way of putting things. On a smaller scale, I've been struggling with just the little things, feeling happy about where I am in life and today I sort of came out of it and I swear, the sunlight, deliciously refresshing pool, my daughter's giggles, my son wiping off my kisses, crisp red grapes---they all just seemed so much more wonderful to me, having come out of my funk.
Thanks for the reading recommendation!

someone else said...

As difficult and painful as the hard times are, I agree that the blessings wouldn't be as recognizable without the contrast. I'm grateful that I don't have to go through the sadness alone.

Millie said...

Sometimes I think, "Oh no - I would know the best from the good and the better - I don't think I need the BAD to show me how good the good is."

But there's something about triumphing over extreme hardship and pain that makes not only the sweet things sweeter, but gives you strength and knowledge enough to know that whatever might come next, you'll be able to handle it. Once you go through several cycles of that, I think you get more comfortable in your own skin. It doesn't make hard stuff easier, but it does make you realize that it actually does pass.