Sunday, November 4, 2012

Dona Nobis Pacem ~ The Dream: Trees In The Courage of Time

Welcome to BlogBlast4Peace 2012. Thank you for blogging peace with us today. Do check back for updates and visit our Facebook Fan Page where there are thousands blogging for peace from 152 countries. Tag me with your peace globe. We will tag and share around the world. Be sure to sign the Linky List at the bottom of this post or in a comment. Happy Peace Blogging today! Visit, visit, visit.

Today is my grandfather's birthday. There is no better way to honor him. He was the most peaceful person I ever knew.
 
 The Dream ~
Trees in the Courage of Time

 I didn't see him at first. I was more interested in her.
Stunning. In the afternoon sun, she was stunning. Dressed in her finest lace. That skirt. Those shadows. Those flaws. Those curves!

Oh, she had her fungi infirmities alright. But she was beautifully clothed in all of it.  Right down to her roots and the algae on her bark. I'd gone searching in the woods today. Searching for words. I wanted them to fall into my head and come flying out my pen like the leaves around my feet in the chill of an autumn day.

 
Enter That-Little-Voice-In-My-Pencil Head:  oh mimi mimi mimi. Why are you photographing fungus? Reeeeally, Mimi? Photographing fungus? For your peace post? said the sane voice in my head.  You're gonna write a peace post about a tree? 
Really, said I, the similarly infirmed woman-of-trees and broken limbs. I know when the muse visits, O Inconvenient and Often Wrong Voice of Sanity. And It's visiting now. As soon as I turned the corner under the tree where the summer owls lived, I knew. Her white-skirted beauty nearly took my breath away. It stopped me in my tracks. That's a muse. Oh yes, that's a muse. Would you feel better if I gave her a name? We'll call her Lily Lichens. 

I wanted to touch her skirt and talk about the woodsy mannequin of beauty she'd become, facing the evening sun like a Queen on a lace covered throne.  No wonder the owls wanted to be near her kingdom.


She had no limbs to speak of.  Only a bare-topped presence in the forest of Bloggingham.
 But given the splendor of her skirt, I hardly noticed. Maybe the other trees couldn't recognize her awesomeness. But to me she was perfect imperfection.



  Lily. She reminded me of someone. Of something.
I looked up. Poor thing had no coverage. No shelter. No life. Just barren and black. Empty arms and a trunk full of chemical compounds. In need of...yes...that's it!

 I once had a dream I remembered my whole life.
I can put myself there in an instant. I walked through a forest of trees, but not just any 'ole trees. They were trees full of hurt and trees full of pain, bent down and twisted in the sickest most crippled of ways; all of them dead and black as coal.  The gnarled trees represented people. My heart hurt to look at them because I knew them by name and I could see their naked infirmities. 
Their sorrows had become their actual physical manifestations.

 Then along came a man who walked among the trees with me. He was a healer. In my soul's frame of reference he was Jesus to me. As He walked through the forest of blighted trees, he spoke to them with love. His presence and authority brought energy and light. Suddenly there was rejoicing. At the sound of His voice they were upright and healed. Every single one of them. There was no more suffering. 



I am so weary of watching the suffering of humanity in my world. Sometimes I wonder how people who live in the midst of war manage to get up another day. If there were bombs falling in my morning commute, wouldn't I have just a tad more to worry about than broken limbs? I might want to stay in bed altogether. 

But then again, there's Lily to consider.
 
 What IS that noise in the leaves? Oh, probably just a squirrel. Wait! did I just see...no...can't be...no such things in these woods. But still. That was an awfully big squirrel darting behind that rock if you ask me.


But getting back to Lily. I wouldn't say this in front of her, but the girl is just wiry. How long has she been sitting here like this, exposed and vulnerable, prone to all sorts of vile and violent ridicule. It's embarrassing to be on display when you're a little short-changed in the display department. Not that I would say that in front of her.  I wondered how one so regal could bear the brunt of it.
 Other trees can be so cruel. 

 But even without a Jesus walker, Lily has courage. She knows deep in her roots that lichens like her need to sit in the morning sun. She will calmly nourish. She will calmly rebuild. She will heal in the sun and one day groto be the neighbor she once was - the ally, the friend, the brother, defender, the peacemaker of all trees - dependable, shade-giving, strong, sturdy, able to stand up to temporary terror.  Lily will prevail.
'Cause I'm here to tell you that when trees lose their limbs they grow strength in other places.

And that came in mighty handy a few minutes later.
I'd wandered up the mountain, much farther than I should have been alone with a broken arm and toting a camera in the other. But you know me. There's something there, up near the cluster of my mountain rocks I know I must see. I need to get there. Just watch your step, Mimi, don't hurry. You'll still make it in time to photograph those high-hilled shadows and get back before dark to write your peace post in plenty of time before midnight.
And I was alllmost there when I heard it again.
Did you see that?

 I don't have mortar shelling in my life, violence at my door or bloodshed on my streets like so many are experiencing at the moment. I have wild noises in the woods.  And trees full of lichen. Inconvenient mishaps that trip me up at the smallest sound of trouble. I've had a lot of that lately. And worries. Stress. Life is full of challenges big and small. How does one stay peaceful in the midst of chaos? I've asked that out loud quite a lot lately. You see one thing through and something else shows up to throw you off your game. And just when you convince yourself it's OK to have a temporary pity party, you realize your blessings and the things you think catastrophic are nothing in comparison to children in the sand with no food. 
Sometimes I am shadow and sometimes I am light.
That is what it means to be human. 

And I have learned this: Suffering causes people to lose their peace. Just as my dream trees mourned in sorrow, just as my Lily waits for sunshine, so do children play in streets with bombs and bullets waiting for someone to change their world.
 
I want to wake up one morning and hear on the morning news that an unknown Bringer of Peace attacked the streets of Syria, or the roadsides in Baghdad or the majestic hills of Afghanistan carrying nothing in his arms but an olive branch and a batch of cookies. "He was met with much rejoicing," they'll say, as they all lay down their weapons.

They were trees in the courage of time.
Bent and listening for a spoken word of power.

 

It takes courage to be peace in the midst of conflict. 

   Everywhere you go you will walk among people striving for something - standing bare in the forest waiting for something -  because nations are just people and people are just humans camped out on the same global axis. At the root of it all, we are just trying to walk our own peace wherever we are.
  Sometimes people need to latch onto your peace before they can find their own. 
Be that peace.
 (Even if your limbs are falling off)

 We are made ever stronger when sheltered in the shade of our allies, our truest trusted friends, our most honest relationships. Nothing else in life is worth fighting for. 


The reality is that we live in a world where people spin hatred stronger than a peoples' will to be free. What kind of courage is that? What kind of world is that?
I'll tell you what kind of world. A planet full of an ever- growing number of humans who are so desensitized to the brutalities of life and human suffering that they begin to believe that the taking up of arms is strength, when in fact it is only power, and that the laying down of arms is weakness when in fact it is holy surrender. 
This must stop. 

Because if it doesn't, we will shoot the branch bearer when he appears.
And I might want some cookies.

The fox was faster than I. About half my size and poised to pay me an up close and personal visit. And I'm standing in a clearing? Now?? Wearing a long sweatercoat to further trip me up with a white-tailed fox?
There are a million trees and I am six feet from the nearest one with no where to go but up? Or down...if the fox has his way. Who am I kidding? Me and my broken lichen limbs couldn't climb a tree if we found one. I could not see the tree for the forest this time. So I had to walk. And pretend I wasn't afraid. W.A.L.K. S.l.o.o.o.w.l.y. M.i.m.i. and get yourself off this mountain. Yes, folks, this time I listened to the well-timed voice of Sanity. That creature looks hungry, all bent over with his nose to the ground sniffing around for...for...food.  
I really didn't want to be his dinner.

 I made it back home safe and sound, vowing never to walk that mountain alone again (you know how long that will last) and wishing just a little that I'd not strayed so far from home when the fox came to my forest.  There are worse things in the world ya know. Lily, in her infinite wisdom, continues to rebuild at dusk, sitting in the sun.  She surrenders and waits. A tree in the courage of time. I put aside my fear and walked away from the fox. Given a bigger challenge or a bigger fox, that might mean the difference between life in a war zone and life under green green leaves..



Maybe the world doesn't need a savior. Or a hero. Or even a fatigue-wearing band of well-meaning revolutionaries armed with bigger and better weapons. 
Maybe we need dream walkers brave enough to arrive with empty arms and powerful words.
 As for me? I would just like to grow an olive branch.
Or two.




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64 comments:

Travis Cody said...

And cookies. And maybe CAKE.

Because you can't argue or fight with someone when you're sharing cookies and CAKE.

I'll be back shortly to get Pam and I signed in. It's 10 minutes to Blog Blast Day here in the pacific northwest.

Mimi Lenox said...

Yippee! And we're off.
You're right. No fighting with hands full of cookies.

Karen Jo said...

Great idea and wonderful post.

Christine said...

A beautiful post, Mimi. Let's bake cookies!

Annelisa said...

[:-) I wrote a comment here earlier, but it seems to have disappeared...]

I love the Lily Lichen, and I absolutely love the lovely autumnal pictures...beautiful! But most of all, I love your story, your dream...I think most of us would love that dream to come true; for a healer to walk through the world and take away the hurt and pain and hunger and make it a better place. We can wish for it, and there are some in the world brave enough to make it happen, to put their lives in danger in the attempt.
I wish I was that brave.
But we do what we can, where we can, and today we join together and think about peace. It's a start. And that start has grown from a few years ago.

Have a wonderful BlogBlast 4 Peace, Mimi, my dear. Let's hope this is the best so far!

(I will start my rounds once I've got my own post finished and up [Unfortunately, I'm not as organised as you :-D ] and will start to send you links I find xx)

Jennie Marsland said...

Happy peace day, Mimi! Beautiful post, and beautiful pictures. And the message is so true - peace takes more courage than anything else in this world.

Milo and Alfie Marshall said...

Sending LOVE and PEACE your way Mimi ~ and hoping that one there is world peace too.

Michelle said...

Beautiful photos - even better words and thoughts. Absolutely loved it, Mimi. You costantly awe and amaze me.

The tree dream with the healer... so beautiful! I want to be there and see Him too. And yes, I've had the same year of stress and some heavy moments of feeling pretty much exactly what you described.

I'm glad the fox didn't mistake you for a peace cookie. ;-)

Susan said...

"I want to wake up one morning and hear on the morning news that an unknown Bringer of Peace attacked the streets of Syria, or the roadsides in Baghdad or the majestic hills of Afghanistan carrying nothing in his arms but an olive branch and a batch of cookies. "He was met with much rejoicing," they'll say, as they all lay down their weapons.
They were trees in the courage of time. Bent and listening for a spoken word of power.

"It takes courage to be peace in the midst of conflict. "

You speak my mind. We have very different writing styles, but you may see some of the same thinking in my writing. ANd I will be looking at my feet, other's feet and tree roots all teh rest of my life.

Ginger Jasper said...

Love and peace to you. We joined in on our blog and FB too .. Hugs GJ xx

Akelamalu said...

Peace to you and yours Mimi. x

Laura said...

May you be blessed with peace Mimi... may it be so for all beings, for our precious planet and all that exists here.

Kathy said...

Thank you Mimi, for preaching peace every day, and for reminding us that it is up to us.

Dawn Drover said...

Sometimes people need to latch onto your peace before they can find their own...

So very true.. beautiful post my friend!

sue said...

beautiful post, mimi.

I wondering though if your fox weren't more likely to be a coyote...they've found their way into much of the eastern mountains.

Stacy Uncorked said...

Happy Peace Day, Mimi - thanks so much for orchestrating this! Loved your story.

Emily said...

It takes more courage to be peaceful in this world than to fight. Peace is no longer an option. Without it, we are doomed.

Vinny "Bond" Marini said...

6 years dear friend...a wonderfully fulfilling 6 years and the movement gets stronger each year.

You are our muse Ms. Mimi

Dona Nobis Pacem

Janet White said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Janet White said...

You bake cookies, Travis can bake cakes, and I'll bring the pie ... In peace we all get our just deserts with dessert.

goodnightgram said...

Happy Peace Day! I didn't bake cookies, but I bought chocolates and made peace jewelry to share. You can see it on my peace post.

Janet White said...

For everyone with access to Twitter, remember to use hash tags to get Blog Blast to trend #donanobispacem #blogblast #blogbast4peace

Anonymous said...

"Sometimes I am shadow and sometimes I am light. That is what it means to be human." Wow! I like this.

Profound as always Mimi. Thank you for starting this movement!

Julie (Rose)

Banker Chick said...

I have posted this year, as many of my friends have reminded me.

Sun Singer said...

What a wonderful post. I'm reading it multiple times to take it all in.

Malcolm

Bing Yap said...

what an insightful walk with you in the woods... thanks for sharing your beautiful thoughts on peace. i am lucky enough to have never experienced the sound of exploding bombs and war sirens... i cannot imagine the hardship of living in that kind of world... i cannot imagine the intense fear that mothers in war-torn areas feel for their children's safety...

like you, i dream of waking up one morning and hearing good news that there is no more war in any part of the world... that there will no longer be a possibility that war of any sort will invade our shores...

blessings to you, mimi... thanks for linking me in...

and KUDOS to you for a successful BlogBlast this year!

Team Beaglebratz said...

This year iz our furst time tue join in here. Our mom duzn't know much on the artsy stuff so we just did what we cood.

We really like your pikchurz.
Shiloh'n The DIVA Shasta
(an'mom Kim)

CherryPie said...

A lovely post to accompany BlogBlast for peace day :-)

meowmeowmans said...

Thank you, Mimi. Sending you much love and peace this day and every day.

Mimi Lenox said...

Good morning, Peace Bloggers! Thank you for blogging peace today.
So many beautiful posts to read. I am taking my time and enjoying all of them.

No stress.
No fox.
No worries...

Just sayin.

Peace to you. Time for more coffee.
See you soon!

Mimi Lenox said...

Checking comment function...someone said it is broken. Nope.
Thank goodness.

Dear Mr. Linky: We hope not to break you. Love, The Peace Bloggers

P.S. Do you have a peace globe?

Sherry Blue Sky said...

Your writing is always so beautiful, Mimi, and hits me right in the heart. I think the fox came your way as a blessing, to show you that, though you are two different species, each there for your own reasons, there was little to fear, if neither attacked the other. In respect, you each went your own way. I wish we had a photo of that beautiful little being. I love "Be a tree in the courage of time." Wow.

Pam J. said...

i made it! been sick since thursday, but i couldn't miss this for anything. peace be with you, mimi xo

Naila Moon said...

Thanks for coming by and being in peace with me awhile.
*hands you a cookie*
Peace,
~Naila Moon

http://yaknowstuff.blogspot.com/2012/11/day-4-dona-nobis-pacem.html

Kathy said...

I put the wrong URL in this morning. It's one of those years. Sorry..
Kathy

coopernicus said...

peace in our time....

Lizza said...

Wonderful story, thoughts and insights as always, Mimi. I'm not surprised that you were able to find beauty and life in lichens.

Peace, dear friend.

Katie and Glogirly said...

Beautiful post, Mimi. Thank you for creating an opportunity for us to pause, in peace.

xo,
Katie & Glogirly

"Peace begins with a smile."
-Mother Teresa

Behind the Smile said...

Such a lovely post with so many messages within the reading. From world peace to inner peace. Sorrow causes inner peace to flee, you are so right about this and it takes a long time to reclaim that inner peace. Meanwhile a world longs for peace an end to fighting. Beautiful writing, thank you.

Marian said...

suffering causes people to lose their peace. indeed.
what a beautiful post and a beautiful effort.
i just added my link and then realized i'm already here :) apologies & kudos on your organization! yay!

Travis Cody said...

I have followed 135 links back to wonderful words and creative graphics in support of Peace. I was even able to see some things on FB, although I don't have an account.

It's been a good day. I'll check back to see if anyone else comes by to sign Mr Linky.

Mimi Lenox said...

Karen Jo - Love seeing you here. You've been blogging peace since forever!

Christine - You want me to bake? Stop and think what you are saying.

Annelisa - You and your sunrise photography. Always here for me. Thank you. Anticipating links!

Jennie - It does take courage but is not impossible. Going to read your post now.

Milo and Alfie - Two cats with a passion for peace (thank you, Jan)

Mimi Lenox said...

Michelle - I knew you would love the tree dream. We are two peas...peace peas that is.

Susan - I DO want to hear that. I wish they would report the good news. There is lots of it happening everywhere.
I will be by to read you. Thank you for blogging peace with us today.

Ginger Jasper - The wonderful cat bloggers have arrived. Peace to you.

Akelamalu - Love you. Peace.

Laura - Blessings to you as well.

Kathy - Thank YOU for keeping the faith.

PG Forte said...

Happy Peace Day!

Mimi Lenox said...

Dawn - Thank you, dear friend. I will catch up with you later.

Sue - Perhaps. Don't think so..it had a reddish color that blended in with the leaves on the ground and a white bushy tail. But I didn't stick around long to investigate. ha!

Stacy - Thank you for your wonderful contribution!

Emily - There is no choice. You are right.

Vinny - Six years of life on and off the blog. We are so bound..these peace bloggers. It is beautiful.


Mimi Lenox said...

Jamie - "just desserts" would not include my cooking. Think what you say! But I'll take your pie and your Trav's cake. Peace food.

Gram~ I cannot wait to see your peace post. I am trying to make the rounds. Save me some chocolate!!!

Teri and the cats of Curlz and Swirlz said...

I so look forward to this day each year. Your stories bring such a personal and tremulous voice to the wish for peace.

In writing my short post for today, I too felt powerless to stop war, so looked for another peace I could bring to the world...

In my little way, today, I donated 16 pairs of shoes to Souls4Soles to help those whose life is not peaceful. I cannot stop war, but I can bring an 'olive branch' in a way...

Thank you for everything you do to keep this going...

Leave It To Davis said...

Peace....what a wonderful dream. If only it would come true....

Mimi Lenox said...

Julie - Shadow and light. Yes.

Banker Chick - I saw your post and loved it. Thank you!

Sun - I will be by to read yours as well. Thank you.

Bing - I am glad you are back among us. I believe you have the soul of a peace blogger.

Coop - Amen

Team - Welcome!!! I shall come visit you!!

CherryPie - Peace and love to you

Meows - Sending purrs and peace right back to you.

Sherry - You have a poet's heart thru and thru. I am so thankful to you for alerting the online poets of today's event. Their peace poems are incredible.

Pam - You cannot be sick on Peace Globe Day. I decree it.

Lizza - There is beauty in all things. Sometimes it takes awhile to find it. Smile.

Mimi Lenox said...

Naila - I will share that cookie with you anytime. Peace.

Kathy - No worries.

Katie/GloGirly - Thank YOU for being a consistent peace blogger.

Behind The Smile - Hope is present in the presence of love. That is a fact.

Marian - No need for apologies. I placed your link there earlier as I saw it float by somewhere in the blogosphere today. Beautiful post.

Travis - You did what??!! Already??! **falls over in amazement**

Mimi Lenox said...

PG Forte - And to you!

Teri - Souls4Soles for shoes sounds like a great organization. I commend you for donating and caring. Please send the link and I will put it in the peace gallery sidebar.
I look forward to this day as well and wish you continued prosperity and peace.

Davis - Don't you think we're closer? I surely hope. Thank you for stopping by. Peace to you.

ilovemylife said...

I loved reading your story. Such a flare for writing. So nice that we come together in peace. Sending warmest wishes for peace now and all the futrue "nows" ~ Sandra from Rhode Island

Amber said...

I do not know what to write here other than to say that a peaceful world is something that my whole body aches for, and while I know that it is unlikely to ever come to be, I am happy that I have the ability and freedom to seek it, pray for it and offer my help in any place that it is welcome.

Happy peace day, everyone. :)

Kay L. Davies said...

Cookies! That's the idea, Mimi. And someone said cake, which made me think "A peace of cake"!
Fabulous.
Your tree is beautiful in her white-lichen skirt. I'm an old tree-hugger in the most literal sense.
And I'm glad you weren't eaten by a fox.
K

Anndi said...

You always make me smile... always... and who could ever be unpeaceful when smiling?!

Thank you Mimi.

lime said...

i go to the trees to find peace myself.

CyberCelt said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Dennis said...

Cookies and Peace, my two favorite things. Hope your arm mends soon Mimi. Thank you for initiating this wonderful blog movement.

Fisher and Staff said...

Very beautiful, just as you are, Mimi. Peace and love from our little corner.

Laurie Kolp said...

Thanks for all you do!! Peace!

Kerry O'Connor said...

This is such a unique way to talk about the concept of peace. Thank you for visiting Real Toads: perhaps my own post was not entirely in keeping with the others on Blogblast4peace, but I wanted to show my solidarity with your cause.

Walk in the Woods said...

I just love this post … and will likely return to reread it on occasion. Thank you, Mimi, for manifesting this beautiful event. And I thank your grandfather too for the inspiration.

Peace.

Rosidah Abidin said...

Thanks for another inspiring year and post. I hope your arm recovers soon. Bless you, Mimi. Dona Nobis Pacem.

Mimi Lenox said...

http://www.brianshomeblog.com/2012/11/blog-blast-for-peace-2012-blogblast4peace.html

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