Tuesday, March 25, 2014

A Friendly Year

Love the title of this book. Aren't we all looking for a friendly year?

Three hundred and sixty-five daily entries were compiled from Henry Van Dyke's writings, published from 1887 to 1905, this book published in 1906. The front page says, "From Ralph, xmas, '07." Would that be 1907 or 2007? Hmmm, I wonder.

I rushed the reading, anxious, I guess, to find that friendly year, reading two pages each day, four entries at a time. I tried to pick a favorite quote - the one I posted in January, A Footpath to Peace is probably the favorite, but there are many, many choices.

Because this book is out of print, I will share a few others with you.

"And if some of the rich of this world (through the grace of Him with whom all things are possible) are also modest in their tastes, and gentle in their hearts, and open in their minds, and ready to be pleased with un-bought pleasures, they simple share in the best things which are provided for all."
"...ready to be pleased with un-bought pleasures..." - love that line.

What a surprise to find pressed flowers, placed in this book over a hundred years ago?! You won't find that in a Kindle or a Nook (sorry, had to put that plug in there for books with pages you can feel). Was there a special quote on this page that inspired these flowers, which look like Johnny Jump-Ups? Maybe this one, from April twenty-fourth:
"By the breadth of the blue that shines in silence o'er me,
By the length of the mountain-lines that stretch before me,
By the height of the cloud that sails, with rest in motion,
Over the plains and the vales to the measureless ocean,
(Oh, how the sight of the things that are great enlarges the eyes!)
Lead me out of the narrow life, to the peace of the hills and the skies."

Henry Van Dyke makes reference to the fast pace of the age, the distractions and clutter of their busy lives. What would he think of today?

"Let me but live my life from year to year,
With forward face and unreluctant soul;
Not hurrying to, nor turning from the goal;
Not mourning for the things that disappear
In the dim past, nor holding back in fear
From what the future veils;
But with a whole
And happy heart that pays its toll
To Youth and Age, and travels on with cheer.

So, let the way wind up hill or down,
O'er rough or smooth,
The journey will be joy:
...My heart will keep the courage of the quest,
And hope the road's last turn will be the best."

May your journey be with joy, your year friendly, and the flowers you press last a hundred years!

1 comment:

  1. I am very glad that you like real books, with pages :), and that you share them with us. You have a real treasure with that one. You know, I do like my Kindle and it's great for traveling, but if I really enjoy a book I find that I have to buy it in paper form as well (when I can afford it). So I'm not sure how cost effective my Kindle is :)