Comments 3

Nature’s Benevolence…

The stars awaken a certain reverence, because though always present, they are inaccessible; but all natural objects make a kindred impression, when the mind is open to their influence. Nature never wears a mean appearance.

Ralph Waldo Emerson, Nature (1836) Ch. 1, Nature.

Tell that to the man facing a hungry lion empty-handed, or caught out at sea in the middle of a typhoon… convince him of nature’s benevolence…

EJ Liederstein

[Follow-up note to the above rejoinder]

Do not mistake what I’m saying.
I’m not the doom and gloom pessimist my words might lead you to believe I am; nor am I the one who sees the sable lining in every cloud.

What I’m saying is, if you insist on clothing nature within your anthropomorphic fantasies, then I will vehemently disagree with you.
Nature never wears a mean appearance – because she has no ‘appearance’ to wear.
She is neither draped in the latest fashions, nor is she at all concerned with how you or anyone else perceive her.
She is not, strictly speaking, even a ‘she’.

She simply is.



  1. Right now she’s having a sh-fit here in Maine…snow’s falling hard, but it won’t stay put….

    Our tendency to project feelings onto non-human nature is strong, isn’t it….a definite problem for lyric poetry….to just say what the poet sees in a tulip, let the tulip remain a tulip without going so far as to anthropomorphize it..and still symbolize, still express an emotion….very deep down there might indeed be some sense of connection, though a connecting of otherwise different things….


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