Fans of Marilynne Robinson’s gentle storytelling style know that Lila has hit the shelves.
Bitter, injured psyches are healed mainly by their connections to others but also by their connections to texts, memories, and the little glories of nature.
Little glories, big significance.
Like shimmering leaves, sweet elderberries, and a burning bush.
“She had never been at home in all the years of her life. She wouldn’t know how to begin. But the shade of the cottonwoods and the shimmer of their leaves and the trill of the cicadas were comfort for her. The pasture smell. Elderberries grew in the ditches by the road, and they picked them and ate them as they walked. Sometimes it was dark when they turned back toward Gilead. Once, he noticed a bush glimmering with fireflies. He stepped into the ditch and touched it, and fireflies rose out of it in a cloud of light.”
I have a love affair with fireflies and can’t resist them, in nature or in literary texts.
Which is after all the first step in connecting with others.