This past Sunday, I shared one of my “Morning Meditation” photographs with you, a simple one of a trio of brown pine cones laying hither and yon on a forest floor in Bushnell, Florida. Cynthia Reyes, author of “Myrtle the Purple Turtle,” commented how it reminded her of a quote from one of her favorite books, “Gift from the Sea” by Anne Morrow Lindberg: “. . . they are more beautiful if they are few”.
That made me want to re-visit Lindberg’s works, so I borrowed a copy of “Gift from Sea” (1955) from archive.org. It took me all of one small portion of my evening to read and relish the 142 pages or so.
It’s been a long time since I read anything by Lindbergh (I believe what I read of hers once was a reprint of her writing in a magazine in the 1970s; it was something like that), and I was happily surprised (again) at the clarity and power in her words, so succinctly put, yet saying a lot.
The book focuses on women mostly, and the changes that go with every phase of adult life: marriage, children, homemaking, children leaving home, wondering who is sitting across the breakfast table once the kids are out of the nest. She also explores the most-sought after: peace, solitude, contentment, youth and age; love and marriage.
She lamented how people were drifting apart, and more-so as the world was becoming more connected and modernized. Sounds like today, doesn’t it? —
Here in “Gift,” she placed correlations between sea shells she found on a beach, and roles in society. Moreover, how she understood and believed how men’s and women’s traditional roles were crucial to a healthy society and strong families, were well thought out and logical. Additionally, her thoughts on having less material possessions and focusing on relationships, introspection, peace, and balance in life makes sense.
One of my most favorite parts is where she speaks to time and tranquility: “. . . time to be quiet . . . time to think . . . time to watch the heron . . . Time to even, not to talk” and how some people feel there is a need to always fill silence with chatter. There is something very true to what she wrote; there is nothing wrong with being quiet at times.
Lindberg’s writings in nascent thinking is worth exploring, and I recommend picking up and reading this surprisingly sensible book.
Thank you, Cynthia, for reminding me of Lindberg’s works. I really enjoyed “Gift from the Sea.”
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©Susan Marie Molloy and all works within.