I went on a journey; I wanted not to go.
A place for me had been readied,
Yet how did I know?
Up steadily plodding pine-scented hills
Labored my loaded van,
To a large Messianic picnic,
Its driver a half willing man.
An hour plus of happy noise,
Produced desire in me to walk around.
Leaving many people, girls and boys,
Quickly I covered the dusty ground.
Doubtless I missed the gathering’s theme,
But I was entertaining a different dream.
In searching out a more secluded place,
I eagerly anticipated a bit of time space.
Seeking a location of shade from the heat,
I found it along with a wicker basket chair.
There I sat down and rested soul and feet,
Noticing the keenness of the silent air.
Into my mind floated words
From an ecstatic June 1967 song,
Now less heard:
‘The wind of the hills is clear as wine,
And full of the lingering scent of pine . . . .’
On that happy wine for two hours
Readily I dined, the Jerusalem wind
Ever gently rustling the swaying pines.
Short the time, yet I made it mine.
I notice how the summer wind caresses
Tapering trees as they bow and bend.
Time to be blessed, thought I,
Peaceful the message the silent scene sends.
Nothing of the surroundings is lost on me,
Or passes me absent-mindedly by.
‘O Spirit of God You are near,
Flowing the softly swaying forest through;
Wind in the pines, you I perceive and hear,
Delivering a different and tranquil view.
Be mine Spirit wind. Whence you come
No one can accurately say,
Nor whither you go;
You are welcome.
Surely you’re visiting me this day
In my found place of peace,
My refuge from the crowd.
O wind in the trees do not cease,
But speak to me in audible voice,
Reveal to me matters of your choice.’
And the balmy blowing breeze
Speaks in gentle measure:
‘Stay with Me here an hour,
Spend with Me valued leisure;
Hearken to the wind’s replenishing power.
Agree not to leave empty this day;
Take in memory the Judean hills away.’
Into my vision field wings
A suddenly seen yellow butterfly.
My heart jumps up and sings
As this emissary passes my eye.
In silent speech he says,
Joyfully fluttering on the breeze:
‘Recognize this as a better day,
A day in which your Father is well pleased.
Dutifully you trudged up the unwilling hill
Unknowing of a waiting blessing,
But come take your fill.’
My thoughts thus meandered and enthused
On a journey it was not for me to choose;
The transport call to a picnic I obeyed,
Answering to some pressure upon me made.
Returning to the picnic site,
My cell phone rang on the way.
This clear affirmation it intoned:
‘Friend, you got it right;
Sufficient the blessing you go home with today.’