This is a time in the history of the United States when sanity seems to be in very short supply. Wendell Berry is a good antidote for that. I read this poem this week, and found it bracing. It is so much the opposite of the kind of rhetoric that has filled the air lately.
Here are some of my favorite lines:
So, friends, every day do something
that won't compute. Love the Lord.
Love the world. Work for nothing.
Take all that you have and be poor.
Love someone who does not deserve it.
Give your approval to all you cannot
understand. Praise ignorance, for what man
has not encountered he has not destroyed.
Ask the questions that have no answers.
Invest in the millennium. Plant sequoias.
Say that your main crop is the forest
that you did not plant,
that you will not live to harvest.
Say that the leaves are harvested
when they have rotted into the mold.
Call that profit. Prophesy such returns.
Put your faith in the two inches of humus
that will build under the trees
every thousand years.
Laughter is immeasurable. Be joyful
though you have considered all the facts.
The rest of it is good, too. Go on, read the whole thing.
The roundup is here today.
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