The Rapidian


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Beauty in Simplicity (Photo courtesy of The Rapidian on Flickr Photo by: stevendepolo)

Beauty in Simplicity (Photo courtesy of The Rapidian on Flickr Photo by: stevendepolo)

April is the fourth month of the year, and the month we examine the talent for community described as deriving pleasure from the simple things of life.

Anticipating grand pleasure such as trips, vacations, holidays and festivities is important to our happiness; but even more so is the ability to enjoy the simple pleasures of life like biting into a ripe peach, hearing the first robin in spring, sinking into a soft bed after a hard day or savoring the smell and taste of a hot cup of tea. These are the pleasures of daily life which come to us through the gifts of our senses and remind us of God's immense pleasure in us and all creation.

In her article on the Talents for Living in Community, Melannie Svoboda SND notes that "People who can derive pleasure from the ordinary are a blessing for their communties, for they are easily satisfied.  More than that, they are frequently filled with wonder and gratitude.  They do not depend upon momentous miracles for their happiness.  Rather they have learned to notice and appreciate the more ordinary miracles; a cardinal's song, a baby's finger, the scent of lilac."

If you are very lucky in your community, you may come to know someone who is not only a friend who derives pleasure from simple things of life, but is one who shares that pleasure in a poem that is a momentary stay against the turmoil of the day.

We share one such poem, written by Dominican Sister Marybride Ryan, who for many years shared her gift of language and literature with students at Aquinas College. Sister Marybride is currently retired and resides at the Marywood Health Center.

There is a peace that comes at close of day
Muting of light, a coolness in the air,
A softening of the clamor and the blare
Of restless motion. Putting work away.
Steps are less hurried. Eyes have time to stray
To notice where a flower has bloomed, and where
A neighbor waits a friendly word to share,
and how familiar rooms invite our stay.
Will it be even so at close of life?
Shall I be glad to see light gently fade,
And feel with ease surcease of noise and strife,
Go peaceful toward the advancing shade?
Come home, and at the Father's table sit
Finding the supper laid, the tapers lit?
                 by Sr. Marybride Ryan


This is the fourth in a series of eight brief reflections written by Sister Mary Navarre, OP. A long-time teacher and writer, Sister Mary is a member of the Leadership Team of the Dominican Sisters ~ Grand Rapids.

submitted by: Rosemary M. Steers, Communications Specialist - Dominican Sisters ~ Grand Rapids

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