Sometimes you can find unexpected bits of wisdom in unexpected places. Poetry, for instance. And especially in the words of one of my favorite poets, William Wordsworth.
Say what? Isn’t he some old dead dude?
Well, yes. He died in 1850, but his words ring true to the Pagan soul. Don’t believe me? Have you ever read “The Tables Turned”?
Don’t care to wade through the whole thing? Have a few excerpts:
(Note: emphases are mine.)
Books! ’tis a dull and endless strife:
Come, hear the woodland linnet,
How sweet his music! on my life,
There’s more of wisdom in it.
And hark! how blithe the throstle sings!
He, too, is no mean preacher:
Come forth into the light of things,
Let Nature be your teacher.
She has a world of ready wealth,
Our minds and hearts to bless—
Seriously. How many Pagans do you know who can quote long passages from many books on the Craft or religion or whatever, but who never venture out into nature, who have never sat next to a stream to hear its song, have never merged their energy with a tree, or grounded into a boulder?
Or maybe they’ve gone out, but have never taken the time to notice what is all around them, have never thanked the sun and breeze for their caresses, have never smiled at the flash of color as a bird flits across the path in front of them, and never stopped to ponder the message that they have been given?
Sweet is the lore which Nature brings;
Our meddling intellect
Mis-shapes the beauteous forms of things:—
We murder to dissect.
We tend, I think, to over-think. Maybe it’s the nature of our world today, but many seem unable to just to accept what is. We have to murder it, tear it apart, shape it to our will. And in the process, we destroy the very thing that makes us whole.
Enough of Science and of Art;
Close up those barren leaves;
Come forth, and bring with you a heart
That watches and receives.