Another Pandemic Sunday

It’s a lovely Sunday afternoon here in central Minnesota. All that’s missing is Pippa’s song wafting through the air.

“…The lark’s on the wing;
The snail’s on the thorn:
God’s in his heaven—
All’s right with the world!…”
(“Pippa Passes,” a drama; Robert Browning (1841); from “The Complete Poetic and Dramatic Works of Robert Browning,” Cambridge Edition (1895))

Except that birds on the wing here are more often crows, (American) robins and sparrows. A blue jay briefly made a tree blocking my desk’s window part of its daily routine, and that’s not what I was going to write about.

Where was I? Lovely Sunday afternoon. Central Minnesota. Birds and Browning. Right.

I’ve been in the house all day, apart from a brief interval on the front stoop. Porch. Whatever. But thanks to contemporary information technology, I participated in Mass this morning. Virtually participated.

I’d much rather go to the parish church. But, as I’ve said before and probably will again, there’s a pandemic in progress. Acting as if it’s not doesn’t seem prudent.

Enjoying the Afternoon

I’ve been enjoying this lovely afternoon. Even though weather reports talk about heat indices instead of wind chill factors. I love living in Minnesota: the weather is not boring.

Which reminds me, there’s a severe thunderstorm watch west and southwest of my area, a tornado watch west-northwest and northwest of us, and both are probably heading this way. Like I said: not boring.

“…And Only Man is Vile!…”

I don’t have to enjoy the weather. Being thankful for sunlight and grass is optional.

So is being jittery, jumpy and fearful. Opportunities for angst abound.

Protests, death, ill-will and pandemic perils permeate news media.

And it seems that an Air Force sergeant killed a sheriff’s deputy in California. He may have had a hand in killing a federal officer on May 29.

There’s enough in those articles, and others I saw, for me to launch into a tirade against one or more of today’s bogeymen.

I won’t, partly because I prefer collecting facts, thinking and writing in that order. And I don’t enjoy writing tirades. Or reading them.

Maybe some folks do, and that’s another topic.

Or I could focus on four words from a 19th-century hymn, and kvetch about how rotten humanity is.

“…What though the spicy breezes
Blow soft o’er Ceylon’s isle,
Though every prospect pleases,
And only man is vile!…”
(“From Greenland’s icy mountains,” Reginald Heber (Methodist version (1889)[emphasis mine])

I won’t. Partly, maybe mostly, because I don’t think that humanity is rotten to the core.

I also don’t see a point in trying to believe that humanity is what’s ailing Mother Nature, and that pandas would be better off without us. And that’s yet another topic. Topics.

“Shout With Joy…”

Besides, I think there’s some value in taking time now and then to notice this wonder-filled universe.

And the corner in Sauk Centre’s south side I call home.

“Question the beauty of the earth, question the beauty of the sea, question the beauty of the air, amply spread around everywhere, question the beauty of the sky, question the serried ranks of the stars … question all these things. They all answer you, ‘Here we are, look; we’re beautiful.’…
“…Prayer:
“O God, You are never far from those who sincerely search for You. Accompany those who err and wander far from You. Turn their hearts towards what is right and let them see the signs of Your Presence in the beauty of created things. We ask this….”
(The beauty of the unchangeable creator is to be inferred from the beauty of the changeable creation, St. Augustine, Sermons, 241, Easter (c.411 A.D.))


Following up on what I said yesterday, about Minnesota weather being not boring.

The National Weather Service issued tornado warnings for parts of northwestern Minnesota last night, including Stephen, Lake Bronson and Kennedy.

There’s probably been property damage, but nobody hurt or killed: not that I’ve heard or read. Good news, that. Or good lack of news.


Posts which aren’t entirely unrelated to this one:

About Brian H. Gill

I'm a sixty-something married guy with six kids, four surviving, in a small central Minnesota town. I mostly write and make digital art. I'm only interested in three things: that which exists within the universe; that which exists beyond; and that which might exist.
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