I put the bird feeders up this weekend and dumped the dirt out of the big ceramic pots I grow herbs & peppers in during the summer. Took the screes down and put them in the shed & stacked the wooden deck chairs under a tarp. I’ve still got a few more things to button down in the yard, but the fall chores are nearly done. The first day there were no takers (that I saw) on the feeders, but yesterday as I was out working I saw a pair of nuthatches making regular trips between the feeder & the pine. Elegant little birds. Then, later, a hairy woodpecker put in an appearance. I feel very satisfied in the fall most years & this year especially so. My life is easy now, though it wasn’t always so. The thing about an easy life is that it requires responsibility. No one deserves an easy life — or everyone does — but if you’re luck you should do something with your luck. I mean me, of course. What is it Camus says in The Rebel? That what you wish for yourself you must wish for everyone.
My month in paradise has come to an end & I have returned to . . . paradise. It is lovely to be home, though it’s going to take a while to get through the mail. I already feel a bit of nostalgia for BMC, but am also carrying forward certain consolidations in my work that were achieved. I also already miss the people I shared the month with — the good news is that we’ll be setting up a group weblog in order to carry forward the conversations begun in paradise. That dynamic — between Eden & the World — can be very rich, for those of us privileged to experience it. The first time I went to BMC fifteen years ago, I felt as if I deserved it; no one deserves such a luxury, but sometimes one is lucky. The problem then is how to live up to one’s good fortune. To have had those conversations, to have listened to the crows, to have seen the loons on the lake, to have watched through the clear water huge bass hanging motionless . . . that exerts a responsibility.