I really believe that if the political leaders of the world could see their planet from a distance of, let's say, 100,000 miles, their outlook could be fundamentally changed. That all-important border would be invisible, that noisy argument suddenly silenced.--Michael Collins, Apollo 11 astronaut
Recently, someone asked me where I find these Sunday Thoughts. This one came from a book of essays I'm reading by Kim Stafford, Having Everything Right. It is dense little book about living in the Pacific Northwest, and a lot of other things. I just finished a great novel, The Magician's Wife, by Brian Moore, about a magician who is sent to North Africa by the French government in 1856 to show the Muslim natives that a Christian Frenchman can perform miracles. Before that I read J.L. Carr's A Month in the Country, a beautiful little novel about a young WW I veteran who spends a month in a Yorkshire village restoring a medieval mural in an old church. Last night, before beginning Having Everything Right, I finished Peter Godwin's When a Crocodile Eats the Sun: A Memoir of Africa. It is a riveting and, for an American with a playground sense of justice, unbelievably tragic story of the good people of Africa, white and black, caught in the cross fire of the insane politics. I guess that's why I chose Stafford's book to follow it. I wanted to read about a place where everything, perhaps, is good and right. All of this sort of random reading is also no doubt why I chose that Michael Collins quote for you to think about today. Maybe this is also why humans write our stories down. It is our way of proving that we are not just connected by similiar sinews or DNA. All of these braided stories make up a kind of spiritual life line that holds us to this little blue planet as we spin through space.