The Jesus of Silver Spring

In my novel The Island of Always, Lena (my protagonist) compares her ex-husband to Jesus—in that he loves everyone, just no one in particular (meaning her).

I was thinking about that today as a friend and I were exchanging emails on the subject of being alone later in life (I'm 63, and have been alone or on my own or however you want to put it for some years). My friend and I both agreed that writing (which is what we do, or at least how we think of ourselves) plays a part in that, both as a prerequisite, solitude being implicit in the writing life, and as a proxy, providing the joy and meaning that might otherwise come from companionship. 

Then I thought about Lena's line, and it occurred to me that there might be another alternative: compassion. Or perhaps the more personal counterpart: kindness. Maybe being kind to others, not just to other people, but to all the life around you, generates in you some of the same well-being that partnership might. It’s more spread out, certainly, easier to miss, no doubt. But maybe in aggregation enough to keep the heart alive. 

Perhaps in the end it all comes down to endorphins and complex neurochemical reactions. Or maybe there is a higher accounting, a karma to be built. But I wonder if the choice to engage with your little patch of the world in this way, each day, to smile at a neighbor, give a treat to a dog, or leave bread out for the birds and squirrels, can sustain the heart through the solitary years ahead. 

I hope so.

Hearts are important. 

 

Comments 4

 
Rosy Cole on Thursday, 31 January 2019 19:08

Steve, thank you for these lovely thoughts which strike the reader as a kind of awakening. My response has run to a blog post!
https://www.gr8word.com/index.php/entry/changing-the-shape-of-the-universe

Steve, thank you for these lovely thoughts which strike the reader as a kind of awakening. My response has run to a blog post! https://www.gr8word.com/index.php/entry/changing-the-shape-of-the-universe
Stephen Evans on Thursday, 31 January 2019 22:28

Always glad to inspire the inspiring. :)

Always glad to inspire the inspiring. :)
Katherine Gregor on Sunday, 03 February 2019 17:36

I was forty-nine when I met my second husband. He was sixty-four. Who would have thought it?

Kindness – true kindness – is a thing of underrated beauty.

I was forty-nine when I met my second husband. He was sixty-four. Who would have thought it? Kindness – true kindness – is a thing of underrated beauty.
Monika Schott on Monday, 04 February 2019 03:34

Being truly kind is a wonderful quality that in our materialistic world, can be lost. It's humbling to give, and even more humbling to receive it.

Being truly kind is a wonderful quality that in our materialistic world, can be lost. It's humbling to give, and even more humbling to receive it.
Already Registered? Login Here
Guest
Friday, 19 July 2019

Captcha Image

Writing For Life

We are a small, friendly community who value writing as a tool for developing a brighter understanding of the world and humanity. We share our passions and experiences with one another and with a public readership. ‘Guest’ comments are welcome. No login is required. In Social Media we are happy to include interesting articles by other writers on any of the themes below. Enjoy!


Latest Blogs

We were in Paris this time last year.  I was enjoying the buzz and feeling shortchanged: we don’t have national holidays in England, at least none t...
"There is nothing inorganic... The earth is not a mere fragment of dead history, stratum upon stratum like the leaves of a book, to be studied by ge...
The fountain pen feels heavy in my hand.  I haven't written for a long time.  I mean written – not typed.  That I do every day, all day.  Click, click...
Tennis courts may be covered over and croquet lawns may have disappeared beneath overgrowth upon overgrowth, but the football pavilion still stands a...
  A poem for the season of Ascension and Pentecost...     Like whispering silk, the elm Like Bridal Veil the birch The Groom is gone...the Gro...

Latest Comments

Rosy Cole Reconnecting
19 July 2019
It's hard to understand why naming the translator isn't an automatic part of a contract. I expect tr...
Katherine Gregor Paris, 14 Juillet
18 July 2019
I've never seen a July 4th parade (except for one I went to in France back in 1976!) – do you not no...
Stephen Evans Paris, 14 Juillet
18 July 2019
As a child we used to go to a Navy air show each summer where the air squadron called the Blue Angel...
Katherine Gregor Reconnecting
12 July 2019
Not sure about the "appreciated" part of translating. Relatively few reviewers even mention the tra...
Jane Phillipson Wilson Time Is Flying and Changes Increasing!
09 July 2019
I so needed to read this today! Thank you, Sue! xxooJane