Words of WonderIn the Land of Words - Eloise Greenfield

In the land
of words,
I stand as still
as a tree
and let the words
rain down on me.
Come, rain, bring
your knowledge and your
music. Sing
while I grow green
and full.
I’ll stand as still
as a tree,
and let your blessings
fall on me.

by Eloise Greenfield


During these rainy days I discovered this poem by Eloise Greenfield, speaking of her love of words. It led her to write more than 45 books for children: stories, poems and biographies, particularly for African American children who she felt were growing up without seeing themselves in books. By all accounts her writings are inspiring and positive, seeking to “choose and order words that children will celebrate”. She said in a talk: “I want to make them laugh, I want to give them ideas, I want them to see how beautiful they are,” and this writer certainly feels she has done just that.

As I enter a week of retreat which will be mostly in silence, I’m reflecting on the gifts and blessings that words can bring, particularly when spoken or written with good intentions, and how we can ‘grow green and full’ on them… the way they can invite, and encourage, inspire and point in a certain direction. Ad yet despite (or maybe because of?) my love for them, I relish the opportunity to let them rest for a while, entering the simplicity of silence which is rare in my life. Let’s see what it will bring!