Old Rose and Silver by Myrtle Reed – Susan’s Newsletter March 2016

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Susan's Thursday Morning Note March 10, 2016
Time.  Letting each day go, accepting all events.  Myrtle Reed Quotes.

Good morning.  Surreal sound of Sandhill Cranes trying to interrupt my thoughts as they call down to me leaving for Canada this morning.  Would anyone notice if I magically became small and traveled with them, to see their beautiful sights at the end of their journey?  So easy to let my mind wander to northern lakes and loons that will soon greet them.  How can I enter that little world and then come back in a few days magically with no one noticing I left?  My little friends and my morning angel are all looking upward, sending their own personal messages to be delivered to the loons.  We all desire to go…even my little doves.  All are looking up at these friendly cranes, dreaming of their flight, handing them our travel dreams to experience for us.  Back to inside my home.  My reality.  Little artist across from me also dreaming of travel as he draws his particular version of a boat.  Hot coffee in my mom’s old stolen coffee mug on my right.  My book with words I cherish at my left.  Old Rose and Silver by Myrtle Reed (1874-1911).  I have just begun this book, but already underlined for you words that have crept into my mind to think about during my quiet moments.  I loved her writings from The Master’s Violin several years ago and my eyes twinkled immediately when I found this book in a donated box from one of you this week. 

Transition after grief from brokenness to determination to again live:
“For a long time, she hovered uncertainly between life and death.  Then, one day, she sat up and asked for a mirror.  The ghost of her former self looked back at her, for her colour was gone, her hair was quickly turning grey, and the light had vanished from her eyes.  Yet the valiant spirit was not broken, and that day, with high resolve, she sent her soul forward upon the new way.  I shall meet Life with as much courage as God will give me.”

When a motherless child she loved and raised moved away, giving her musical story of life a new movement to enter…
“…but Life had taught her one great lesson, and when one door of her heart was closed, she opened another, as quickly as possible.”

Comparing life to a river:
“The river itself portrays humanity precisely, with its tortuous windings, its accumulation of driftwood, its unsuspected depths, and its crystalline shallows, singing in the Summer sun. Barriers may be built across its path, but they bring only power, as the conquering of an obstacle is always sure to do. Sometimes when the rocks and stone-clad hills loom large ahead, and eternity itself would be needed to carve a passage, there is an easy way around. The discovery of it makes the river sing with gladness and turns the murmurous deeps to living water, bright with ripples and foam.

Life gives us individual days.  Each day brings gifts.  Letting each day pass, not holding on.
“You stand alone upon a height like one in a dreary land. Behind you all is darkness, before you all is darkness; there is but one small space of light. In that one space is a day. They come, one at a time, from the night of To-morrow, and vanish into the night of Yesterday.

“I have thought of the days. For you, I think, they first were children, with laughing eyes and little, dimpled hands. One at a time, they came out of the darkness, and disappeared into the darkness on the other side. Some brought you flowers or new toys and some brought you childish griefs, but none came empty-handed. Each day laid its gift at your feet and went on.

“Some brought their gifts wrapped up, that you might have the surprise of opening them. Many a gift in a bright-hued covering turned out to be far from what you expected when you were opening it. Some of the happiest gifts were hidden in dull coverings you took off slowly, dreading to see the contents. Some days brought many gifts, others only one.

“As the days grew older, some brought you laughter; some gave you light and love. Others came with music and pleasure–and some of them brought pain.” “Yes,” sighed Evelina, “some brought pain.” “It is of that,” went on the Piper, “that I wished to be speaking. It was one day, was it not, that brought you a long sorrow?”

“Yes.” “Not more than one? Was it only one day?” “Yes, only one day,”

“See,” said The Piper, gently, “the day came with her gift. You would not let her lay it at your feet and pass on into the darkness of Yesterday. You held her by her grey garments and would not let her go. You kept searching her sad eyes to see whether she did not have further pain for you. Why keep her back from her appointed way? Why not let your days go by?”

“The other days,” murmured Evelina, “have all been sad.” “Yes, and why? You were holding fast to one day–the one that brought you pain. So, with downcast eyes they passed you, and carried their appointed gifts on into Yesterday, where you can never find them again. Even now, the one day you have been holding is struggling to free herself from the chains you have put upon her. You have no right to keep a day.”

“Should I not keep the gifts?” she asked. “The gifts, yes–even the gifts of tears, but never a day. You cannot hold a happy day, for it goes too quickly. This one sad day that marched so slowly by you is the one you chose to hold. Lady,” he pleaded, “let her go!

“Heart-aches are forgotten, tears lose their bitterness, and like a leaf of lavender in a store of linen, so does Memory make life sweet.”

“I’ve always thought my flowers had souls.”

“On that first day when we look back, either happily or with remorse, to the stony ways over which we have traveled, losing concern for that part of the journey which is yet to come, we have grown old.”

A bird is joy incarnate.  Each separate flower has a magic all it’s own.”

“A book, unlike any other friend, will wait, not only upon the hour, but upon the mood.”

“The heart’s seasons seldom coincide with the calendar. Who among us has not been made desolate beyond all words upon some golden day when the little creatures of the air and meadow were life incarnate, from sheer joy of living? Who among us has not come home, singing, when the streets were almost impassable with snow, or met a friend with a happy, smiling face, in the midst of a pouring rain?”

“Somewhere in this great world the sun is always shining, and it will sometimes shine on you.”

“Nothing in the world was ever built without a dream in the beginning.”

“The lavender was a little woman in a green dress, with a lavender bonnet and a white kerchief. She’s one of those strong, sweet, wholesome people, who always rest you, and her sweetness lingers long after she goes away.”

“When a little pleasure has flashed for a moment against the dark, I have made that jewel mine. I have hundreds of them … I call it my Necklace of Perfect Joy. When the world goes wrong, I have only to close my eyes and remember all the links in my chain, set with gems, some large and some small, but all beautiful with the beauty which never fades. It is all I can take with me when I go. My material possessions must stay behind, but my Necklace of Perfect Joy will bring me happiness to the end, when I put it on, to be nevermore unclasped.”

Again, the thought, who do I want to meet when I meet myself in 10 years?  When I picture who I will see in the mirror what thoughts will be in her mind?   What books?  What words?  What memories?  Regardless of what happens in the next ten years, what inner person can I become?  So much will be determined by what I choose to read a few moments each day, or even a few moments each week.  New words to add to our minds this week.  “Should I not keep the gifts?” she asked. “The gifts, yes–even the gifts of tears, but never a day. You cannot hold a happy day, for it goes too quickly. This one sad day that marched so slowly by you is the one you chose to hold. Lady,” he pleaded, “let her go!”   “But Life had taught her one great lesson, and when one door of her hart was closed, she opened another, as quickly as possible.”  “Yet the valiant spirit was not broken, and that day, with high resolve, she sent her soul forward upon the new way.  I shall meet Life with as much courage as God will give me.”  Beautiful gift.  Today.  Regardless of what Life brings the cranes are flying overhead, the little birds are singing above my roof, my angel of dawn peers into my home, and little green buds have broken the soil outside my door, showing me there is life under the hard soil, waiting at an moment to show it’s beauty.  To show our creator continues to hand us His gifts.  To encourage us to look to the heavens, to drop even if mentally, to our knees.  The peace that passes the understanding of any looking our way will be handed to us.  Thank you for letting me again enter your Thursday morning.  For coming to our store for your gifts.  For friendship.  For coffee.  For a moment away from your own reality.  I hope you can come in again soon.  A book may be waiting for you whose words will change the rest of your life.  Susan


Latin for this week:
Beneficium, donum, gratuitas – gift
Lavandula, lavare – lavender, to wash
Grus – crane. To cry hoarsely.