Tuesday, July 22, 2008

The pause that refreshes

I've just spent another weekend at the Kitsap Forest Theater, rehearsing for a 50's Rock 'n' Roll version of Midsummer Night's Dream. The theater sits at the bottom of a steep hill in the middle of a rhododendron preserve, and is absolutely beautiful -- not to mention the PERFECT setting for this particular play.

But the walk back up the hill to the parking lot at the end of the day can be challenging -- they work us hard, I'm not that fit, and the weather's been very hot -- so I'm always grateful for all the benches the Seattle Mountaineers have kindly built at various points along the path. It's lovely to sit a bit; to watch the play of sunlight and shadow amid the ferns, rhodies, and giant maples and cedars. The sky is blue, the leaves are green, the shadows are crisp and the air is sweet with the smell of crushed needles underfoot.

So it's okay that I have to stop and rest a time or two in the climb: I take a sip from my water bottle and spend a minute looking around, up and down; there's always something beautiful nearby. It calls to mind that first great advertising slogan for Coca Cola, from 1929: “The pause that refreshes.”

But perhaps I would be wiser to use a line from "Midsummer:"

"Therefore, fair Hermia, question your desires;
Know of your youth, examine well your blood...
Take time to pause."

See? Even Shakespeare knew it was important to stop from time to time, to re-evaluate what drives you, what might be the deepest longings of your heart.

For me, one of those longings has always been for the leafy greens of the forest. As my girls used to say whenever they came into a forest clearing, "Mommy, this is God's place!."

It is, indeed.


Solar Powered said...

came across your blog and really enjoy your thoughts...wish I could put my thoughts and feelings into pictures and words the way you do...thanks for sharing.

Diane Walker said...

Thank YOU for visiting!