Saturday, May 9, 2020

to drift

He wanted to drift on the river not so much to see where it went 
as to be one with it, to go with it as virtually a part of it.  
He wished perhaps to live out a kind of parable.  

One cannot drift by intention - 
or at least, in intending to drift and in drifting, 
one must accept a severe limitation upon one's intentions.  
But in giving oneself to the currents, 
in thus subordination one's intentions, 
one becomes eligible for unintended goods, 
unwished -for gifts - 
and often these goods and gifts surpass 
those that one has intended or wished for.

 And so a drifter subscribes necessarily to a kind of faith 
that is identical both to the absolute trust of migrating birds 
and to the scripture that bids us to lose our lives in order to find them.  
Harlan stated it in 1932 with characteristic simplicity: 
"I believe that whatever we need is at hand."

~ Wendell Berry
from "Harlan Hubbard - Life and Work"
photo by Ansel Adams