I'm dreaming of rural life again. It was something that flitted through my brain last night in the middle of a sermon (I was the preacher and its Ok for preachers to day-dream in a sermon if he is the one doing the day-dreaming; otherwise, it's the penalty box). It was Wordsworthian: "I wandered lonely as a cloud... when all at once I saw a crowd, a host of golden daffodils." In my case, it wasn't daffodils, but sheep! And memories of a youth spent on a rural landscape in West Wales. And for a moment at least, in the words of Balloo (of Jungle Book fame), "I was goooone, man!"
Rural dreams have a powerful grip. Wordsworth's nature mysticism sounds notes for me that are almost irresistible. Meadows, streams, birds... these call me away from the klaxon-filled noise of urban life with its neon and polystyrene and ersatz coffee cream that surround us now. I dream of far-away lands, only to discover that the tales of Odysseus and Frodo and The Flying Dutchman insist that life moves on relentlessly. But not without some signs, here and there, that there are certain things that herald Paradise, the world as it should be, and will be. Like a ruined castle (as Calvin puts it), this world still displays some memory of a better past, and anticipates (in its groaning and travailing in birth, as Paul would put it) a new creation where their faint beauties will be restored to an indescribable glory.
Thursday, September 14, 2006
Posted by Derek Thomas at 7:07 AM