WEATHERED ANGEL

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Even angels

reach a point in time

when one wing must be folded close…

retired from efforts to sustain a balanced flight.

 This angel’s weariness is clear to me:

The pull of gravity

is a gift she yields to gladly;

I sense a grateful leaning

into all that life has wrought.

This favored wing

has served her well

has brought her to the heights of glory

and beyond.

Now she must bless it’s failure to arise and fly…

bless pain and weariness…

bless molting feathers and fragility.

Beloved evidence of  countless dances with the clouds,

it is now time to rest.

I feel the weight of your surrender…

As I prepare myself for my own surrender – surgery on my own right wing (my shoulder) – this small clay sculpture of an angel appeals to me. “Look again at your creation from another life. Twenty-three years ago you lifted my warm beauty from the kiln and marveled at the work of your own hands. My soft pink glow was pristine then. Your dancing body – though not so young – was strong and vibrant. Dance was a way of life for you, while sculpture was a little something on the side. But the message was the same: Yield to gravity and accept the gift of rising. My message then – though my particular substance be forgotten – is reaching you anew. My aged form has stood upon the ledge surrounding your screen porch. Your glance has passed me by for years. Rains have blown through and I have softened in the humid air. Storms have threatened my survival. The summer suns blazed down relentlessly, re-firing me, re-hardening my surface. My original purity of surface is quite different from the surface you perceive today. The grime of years is baked into my porous self, and from the accumulated moisture of all the years, a green patina causes me to reflect the foliage of the great outdoors. You now admire my greenish glow and photograph me as yet another gift from nature’s bounty. Yes… I have gotten a little carried away. Perhaps I seem to carry a grudge. Actually, these words are simply a small reflection of your journey. Life has been hard, and you have weathered a variety of inner and outer storms, not to mention tedious repeats of the seasons.  The point is this: You have survived…as I have. Miraculously, our substance is still present…still capable of giving and receiving messages that bring life into focus. And life continues even as we let it go. Though we lie down – or sit on a ledge forgotten –  life is doing it’s little magic tricks. And we are still playing our part.”

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4 Responses to “WEATHERED ANGEL”

  1. Gel Says:

    I often keep the flowers in the vase long after they’ve started to wither. To me their colors often deepen and it’s interesting to see the progression. But more so it reminds me of the process of aging and dying…that which I too and living into….little bit by bit.

    Thanks for your words and the weathered angel.

  2. Patsy Powers Says:

    This is, without a doubt, one of the most beautiful emails I have EVER received. I don’t even know how to explain, but I thank you for sending this out, and I thank my friend, Helen Ray Hutchinson, for passing it on to me.

    I visited the Pottery with her many times when she still lived in Hattiesburg. I have been to functions. I have met you and Mary and your Mother so long ago.

    I have read your Mother’s beautiful book, and indeed, I donated her book to the Hattiesburg Library in memory of a wonderfully dear friend of mine who had died.

    I even remember seeing your father riding his bike in downtown Gulfport a couple of times when I was a young teenager.

    I have been to the museum untold times and was actually thinking recently that I want to take my two youngest grandsons to the coast soon and go to Ocean Springs to the museum. I also want
    my two daughters to go, it is really something to see and appreciate.

    God bless you and your beautiful work, I feel so privileged to
    have received this email.

    • leiflife Says:

      Thank you, Patsy, for your lovely and heartfelt response to my “weathered angel”. It is special to hear from someone who knows something of our history. Bless you.

  3. leiflife Says:

    Thanks Gel, for your understanding and acceptance of the process which we as humans all share. To embrace the changes can be a marvelous thing.

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