“All Bend in One Wind” (Wendell Berry)


[Norway, October, 2015]

On my way to Friends Meeting at Cambridge Sunday morning, my phone rang. It was my brother; his best friend—someone I barely knew—had died the night before. So in silent worship I held my brother and his friend and his friend’s family “in the light,” as Quakers say. Which, for me, means I waited to hear what that small still voice* might teach me about this sad news.

A lot, it turned out. I found myself remembering Harriet Lerner’s Dance of Anger, for example, a wonderful book I haven’t consciously thought about in years. Lerner pointed out how exquisitely families organize, balance themselves. Recalling her wisdom prompted me to be open to the very real possibility that this tragic loss for my brother will impact the rest of our family. And to spend some time thinking how this wind of death and loss and grieving might bend all of us; what that might look like. And how I might be a Be There (as in that supreme compliment: “He/she was always there for me.”) sister.

Something else came to me in that pregnant silence: How in 1985, when I’d read Dance of Anger, how little I’d understood the concept of interconnectedness. (Safe to say I probably didn’t get it AT ALL!) And how, thirty-one years later, I do. I believe. Without ceasing.

Oh, yeah.


* Sometimes called The Inner Teacher

Join the Conversation

1 Comment

  1. Dear Patricia,

    Hello, there, Patricia, my so, so very For Always dearly special and dearly precious friend and sister who you are For Always so, so very much!!!!!! Sister, wow, wow, wow and wow and wow and a zillion wows here, Patricia!!!!! This absolutely fantastic blog post article of yours is just great here and so, so very awesome, my friend!!!!!! Yay!!!!!! This title is just the best and the greatest being very spectacular and very well complementing the astounding theme of this super blog post article! The picture is just perfect here and perfectly illustrates in visual form so, so very well how you have worked in the title and the topic of this remarkable blog post article, Patricia! I thank-you so, so very much and so, so very profusely for very graciously and generously providing this great link here, my so, so very dearest friend. This superb book by our Harriet Lerner has been sitting on one of my bookshelves for awhile now-I must get to reading this, sisterfriend(SMILE!!!!!!). It is like Spirit is giving me the nudge to FINALLY(SMILE!!!!!!!) get going and get moving on reading this great book, sister. My friend, I followed our Harriet Lerner on Twitter, and I signed up for her email list. Wow, I so love this cool link which you have provided here, Patricia, and all of the other marvelous links which you in such a caring and sensitive manner provide, sister! Yay!!!!!!!!

    What you are sharing here so wisely about your reaction to learning from your dearest and darling brother that his best friend just died in how you declare that we are all connected to each other in our interdependency reminds me in a way of the Ray Bradbury short story, A Sound Of Thunder, which you powerfully discussed a short time ago, Patricia. I remember from this masterful short story of how Bradbury wrote of the interconnectedness of the succeeding dominoes knocking down the other dominoes in how all of the dominoes were connecting just like how all people and events are interconnected. Sister, you are just so, so very full of sagacity in saying here that people are interdependent with each other. Sister, you are just such a wise woman, my so, so very precious sisterfriend, Patricia!!!!!! Yay!!!!!!

    I so, so very much love and like the Quaker saying, ” in the light.” I want so to go to a Friends Meeting here where I live in Iowa City, Iowa when I pick a Sunday to not go as I usually do to service at my Faith United Church of Christ here in Iowa City, Iowa. Your Friends Meeting at Cambridge, and you my so, so very special Christian Quaker sisterfriend, and all of the other Quakers sound like such beautifully kind and wondrously wonderful people, and like such great discernment from Spirit comes forth at the Meeting, sister! Patricia, I am praying so, so much and so, so hard for your dear brother over his best friend dying, for his best friend’s family and other friends, and for YOU, Patricia, and your special family, as you have so wisely shared and declared that you wish to be open to the possibility that this tragic loss for your brother will impact the rest of your family, sister! You have so, so very brilliantly used this fabulous quote here in how you are praying much and very often over this in quoting these very fine and excellent words here that you masterfully used in your title, “All Bend in One Wind.” Wow, our Wendell Berry had come up with some pure gems in his magnificent writings, sister!!!!!!

    Sister, I’m like you and I can so relate to you in how you understand the concept of interconnectedness more so than you once did. My understanding has become sharper and clearer over the years, and I’ve gained such a sweet clarity over time. I have journals of mine going back over thirty years back in the day in the 1980s. When I re-read my journal entries from back in the day when I was a lot younger, I can tell how much I’ve grown and matured, and how I have much more wisdom now, too. Sister, I, too, believe along with you, my so, so very special friend!!!!!!!! And I, too, like you, my so, so very precious sister do so without ceasing!!!!!!! Yay!!!!!! Yay for us with our walk with Sweet, Precious Spirit, Patricia!!!!!!! Yay!!!!!!!

    I truly feel, think, and believe in that small still voice as the Inner Teacher, as Sweet, Sweet Spirit!!!!!! What a lovely and such a feeling of Wholeness we so enjoy with Spirit as we love our Sweet, Sweet Spirit Dearest and Darling Mother and Father God Spirit so, so very much, my sisterfriend Christian woman!!!!!! Yay!!!!!!! Now I am just so full of the Holy Spirit Dove even more so now, being very inspired and uplifted from this so full of spirit blog post article of yours, Patricia, and I am emboldened in my very day and in my very life, sister!!!!!! Yay!!!!!!!

    Patricia, please have a wondrously wonderful Wednesday, rest of your week, and weekend, and may all of your days be so, so very especially blessed!!!!!! YOU, Patricia, are my very joy and blessing, and so are your so very cool blog post articles and other great writings which keep me just energized, renewed, and rejuvenated in my very, very heart, and very, very heart, mind, soul, and spirit, sister!!!!!! I thank-you so, so much, sister!!!!!!! Yay!!!!!!!!

    Very Warmly and Sincerely For Always, my so, so very dearly special For Always sisterfriend Christian Quaker white woman who you are so, so very much, Patricia, with such Peace and Love To You For Always, my sister, and with such Blessings and Even More Blessings To You For Always, my friend,

    Your sisterfriend Christian lesbian black woman For Always in the very spirit and solidarity, Sherry Gordon

Leave a comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.