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Something Wonderful: Murmurations

Seldom are a word and what that word signifies found in such a perfect meld.

The world is charged with the grandeur of God.
    It will flame out, like shining from shook foil;
    It gathers to a greatness, like the ooze of oil
Crushed. Why do men then now not reck his rod?
Generations have trod, have trod, have trod;
    And all is seared with trade; bleared, smeared with toil;
    And wears man’s smudge and shares man’s smell: the soil
Is bare now, nor can foot feel, being shod.

And for all this, nature is never spent;
    There lives the dearest freshness deep down things;
And though the last lights off the black West went
    Oh, morning, at the brown brink eastward, springs —
Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
    World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.

—  God’s Grandeur by Gerard Manley Hopkins

Comments on this entry are closed.

  • Rob De Witt February 25, 2021, 10:47 PM

    In a storm…:

    Sam began to sing, howling into the storm his admiration of the Creator, whose genius had wrought such marvels. Of a storm in Beethoven’s pastoral symphony a musician had said that it was more than a storm; it was a cataclysm, a stupendous convulsion of all the powers; but for Sam it was nothing compared to what he had heard in these mountains. Beethoven had hardly done more than whisper among the aspens. Sam’s spirit in such hours as this needed stronger music than any Beethoven or Bach or Vivaldi had dreamed of. He shouted his head off, knowing that once the conductor got the hang of things he would open with a prelude that would shake the earth. He thought of Blake’s words, that music exults in immortal thoughts; but at its greatest reach, when the heavenly instruments flung down the grandeur of their thunders, music was a lament over what Thomas Browne had called the iniquity of oblivion – the lonely finality of death and the eternal night of the grave. But he was young today…

    – Vardis Fisher, Mountain Man

  • gwbnyc February 25, 2021, 11:23 PM

    I’m in northeast NC many times at thanksgiving, there’s a blackbird migration that coincides at that time, it lasts for close to two days- a vast, constant horizon-to-horizon sinuation without prediction.

  • John Venlet February 26, 2021, 3:50 AM

    The earth’s form of beauty is a sort of voice of the dumb earth. Thou observeth and seest its beautiful form; thou seest, and by thy musing as it were, and the very enquiring is a questioning…Doth not, on considering the beauty of this universe, its very form answer thee, with one voice, “Not I made myself, but God?”

    St. Augustine

  • Kevin in PA February 26, 2021, 3:54 AM

    Murmuration – not to be confused with murmuring. https://www.dictionary.com/browse/murmur
    But interesting to know more about Murmuration goo take a look;
    Fascinating the science of it -https://www.wonderopolis.org/wonder/what-is-a-murmuration

    Thanks for that, G.
    Excellent to learn a new word / word usage before 7AM , really enjoyed that video with coffee and a puff today!

  • Lori G February 27, 2021, 11:22 AM

    I was attending a lecture at the Society for Experimental Test Pilots a long while back, and a professor from Montana gave a lecture on the aerodynamics and brain input required to accomplish such feats….amazing! And we call them bird brains. The finest pilots in the world could not accomplish such feats. God makes amazing things.

  • Casey Klahn February 27, 2021, 12:03 PM

    Shorebirds. In the million-plus, inundated the tide flats of my hometown. Apparently, they were stopping there and, I am told, 3 other points on the West Coast of North and South America, for the migration. I have watched this air dance, but by multiple flocks of several species and all at once.

    Yes, it was cool. Probably still is , in spite of the Sierra Club et al.