Wednesday, January 1, 2014

the tender attempt, and other resolutions

"A look into a mirror will confirm it
What disturbs us often as disjointed
becomes clear and simple in a poem:
Flowers start laughing, the clouds release their rain,
the world regains its soul, and silence speaks."

- Hermann Hesse, from "The Living Word"

“Learn what is to be taken seriously and laugh at the rest.”

- Hermann Hesse

“To hold our tongues when everyone is gossiping, to smile without hostility at people and institutions, to compensate for the shortage of love in the world with more love in small, private matters; to be more faithful in our work, to show greater patience, to forgo the cheap revenge obtainable from mockery and criticism: all these are things we can do. ”

- Hermann Hesse

“Life will break you. You have to love. You have to feel. It is the reason you are here on earth. You are here to risk your heart. You are here to be swallowed up. And when it happens that you are broken, or betrayed, or left, or hurt, or death brushes near, let yourself sit by an apple tree and listen to the apples falling all around you in heaps, wasting their sweetness. Tell yourself you tasted as many as you could.”

- Louise Erdrich

"Let us be less luxurious but more magnificent."

- Kakuzo Okakura

And these, I suppose are something like my new year's resolutions. And so the world regains its soul, when we are quietly magnificent, when we fill the spaces with love, in those small, private ways.

Rob went out and bought roses and hydrangeas for us to enjoy through the holidays. And though it seems like weeks since we've seen the sun, I've been photographing them. Yesterday I cut the roses down and put them in my stone bowls. So you'll be seeing those in the coming days......

Another lovely gift I received for Christmas from Rob and Chloe - a large, green iron teapot. As an object, I find it soothing to gaze upon. And it adds another dimension to our afternoon tea ritual.

Also, a book I've been reading: The Book of Tea by Kakuzo Okakura. (On the recommended shelf above).

“Teaism is a cult founded on the adoration of the beautiful among the sordid facts of everyday existence. It inculcates purity and harmony, the mystery of mutual charity, the romanticism of the social order. It is essentially a worship of the Imperfect, as it is a tender attempt to accomplish something possible in this impossible thing we know as life.”

- Kakuz┼Ź Okakura

Well, I am all for a worship of the imperfect, and of course, I'm a proponent of the tender attempt. Also, I'm a fond believer in the possible. 

And so, I wish you a most happy 2014, full of tender attempts.....


  1. Lovely peaceful and sweet images...
    I really enjoyed the Louise Erdrich quote- very touching.
    2014 is filled with possibilities and spaces for love.
    Wishing you a wonderful year ahead.

  2. To the possibilities . . . . (insert clink, now drink . . . )

  3. Yes! Wishing you both a fab 2014! To the possibilities....

  4. Beautiful. Thank you for sharing these powerfully simple quotes. Happy 2014 .. may it fill you with what you need.

    1. So far so good :) Thank you for dropping by and Happy 2014 to you too!


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