A brief respite for people who care too much.

Today I was going to write about the Seize BP movement. Or fistulas. Or sex trafficking. But I’m really not feeling a sufficient sense of outrage for any of that. Actually, I woke up feeling grateful for my life, my nice pillow, and my really soft sheets — so I thought I’d write about something beautiful. And show pretty pictures.
All of these photos are from the Scott Arboretum at Swarthmore College, a preposterously lovely place. We used to live right across the street from the Arboretum’s 300 acres (it covers the campus), and I can tell you with great certainty, it is glorious in every season.  Each tree, shrub, plant and flower has been thoughtfully placed, labeled and is flourishing. You can take classes there, volunteer, buy stuff at their sales, or just wallow in the extravagant beauty of the place.
The Arboretum is a living memorial to Arthur Hoyt Scott (a Swattie from class of 1895) whose intention was to inspire beginner gardeners “by the planting in a public place of such trees, shrubs, and flowers as can be used by people of average means …”

Well, that’s a tiny bit of a crock because, let’s be honest: gardening is expensive, not to mention seriously back-breaking.

But it doesn’t cost a thing to look at the fruits of all that labor.

So today, let’s take a little break from the troubles of the world and remember this from John Keats:

A thing of beauty is a joy for ever:
Its loveliness increases; it will never
Pass into nothingness; but still will keep
A bower quiet for us, and a sleep
Full of sweet dreams, and health, and quiet breathing.

10 thoughts on “A brief respite for people who care too much.

  1. Hello Betty

    Thanks for stopping in my MBA class today. When you came in I kept trying to think where I knew you from, I asked Parkerson if you were possibly on TV before, but I guess you just have a very familiar face. I am in the process of some work that is definitely going to benefit society. Your 365 day venture has given me the inspiration to complete my idea before the year ends so I can hopefully benefit from your $100. I love your idea its absolutely awesome. I will be in contact with you soon! Keep up the the inspiring momentum we need it!!

  2. Lovely! Thanks for reminding us not to forget the simple pleasures like a nice pillow, soft sheets and the joy of beautiful gardens…
    Love the photos, and the Keats quote.

  3. very lovely and refreshing; good idea!! Many of your posts have been very inspiring, but it is a bit daunting to see just how much need is all around us. We each do our part and pray that by end of the day we’ve done more good than harm….
    thank you for this treat

  4. hey and why don’t you donate $100 to this “Scott Arboretum at Swarthmore College”, then? it’d be cool

    greetings from Argentina, I get your posts by e-mail everyday and they rock!

    Santiago, 23 years old

  5. You have no idea how much I needed this perfect post. My 6-day old baby girl is cluster feeding every 45 – 60 minutes due to the over-stimulation of house guests. I’m trying to create a spa-like atmosphere and be still and quiet.

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