living and loving in a small way
When contemplating our civilisation's problems, I dream about the solution being small communities where we can have a deeper relationship with each other, our food, and the land.
When wanting to dip into the great conversation of hearts that has continued on down through the ages, I read small stories - not necessarily short stories, but ones about small, intimate moments, small concerns which swell the heart, small scenes which convey deeply felt events and emotions. The old fairy tales are especially good for this. And the old feminine classics: Austen's, LM Montgomery's, the Brontes'. Men too can write in macro, of course. Tolkien showed us how to create intimacies within an epic story. Robert Frost wrote about powerful ideas in small, quiet ways. But I do believe my favourite tellers of small stories are women.
I look always for small details, such as the layers within a rose, or the weight of a sigh. I try to photograph the small, write the small, link my days from small detail to small detail until I've made it a lacework.
I love small birds, small rings, small notebooks, small tea plates made from decorated glass (which I bought today and love for very deep, personal reasons that fill my heart and memory every time I look at one of these plates.)
I love my small country, where cows and sheep roam contentedly over grassy meadows and there are only two degrees of separation between everyone.
I try to keep my voice small (although I usually fail). It seems to me that speaking quietly is a quick way to create a gentle, loving atmosphere.
And I try to keep my thoughts focussing always back to the small: the heart of things. Because I think that is where truth lies.
Are you a small-picture person, or do you live on a larger scale?