First week of Eastertide -- Several inches of snow piled up, bringing memories of this song:
Ring out, bells of Norwich, and let the winter come and go,
All shall be well again, I know.
Love, like the yellow daffodil, is coming through the snow,
Love, like the yellow daffodil, is Lord of all I know.
The song refers to Julian of Norwich, a 14th century mystic and anchoress who lived through three waves of the black plague, a collapsing economy, and the ongoing war between England and France. Yet she was sustained by a deep certainty that God held all that is like a small hazelnut in the palm of her hand, that God created it, loves it and preserves it. Certainty and trust, alongside questions and doubts.
She wrote "And so our good Lord answered to all the questions and doubts I could raise, saying most comfortingly: I may make all things well, I can make all things well, I shall make all things well and I will make all things well; and you will see yourself that every kind of thing will be well."
Not "nothing bad will ever happen" but "All will be well, and all manner of thing shall be well." Not a blithe "Don't worry, everything will be fine," but a hard-won, deeply felt trust that deep down, "All will be well." Love, like the yellow daffodil and the yellow forsythia, survives the snow. Good news for these difficult days.
And here in Goshen, snow gave way to spring wildflowers, velvety moss, rugged bark and new green leaves.
Added note: My sister-in-law tells me they heard this sung on Easter Sunday by a family from Hyattsville Mennonite, singing to the neighborhood from their porch. They closed with Bells of Norwich, but changed the last line from "Let the winter come and go" to "Let this virus finally go."
And if you'd like to hear a version arranged and performed by Sarah Turner and David Glick, here's a link
My approach to contemplative photography --
Tell about it."
Mary Oliver in "Sometimes"