The Working Bird
Robert Frost, in a poem entitled, “Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening”, begins with these lines: “Whose woods these are I think I know.
His house is in the village, though;/He will not see me stopping here
To watch his woods fill up with snow.”
They detail the other side of the carving you see before you.
The carving depicts a bird at work. He is searching for food in a stream or in the shallows of a lake. He is doing what most wild animals do all the time. It is our mind that brings peace and contemplation to their daily run.
This is not to say that these wild things do not attain to some kind of peace. It’s just the peace that comes from knowing what you do and doing it. There is a horse, in fact, in the above quoted poem that brings the person contemplating the woods back to his or her daily run with a shake of its head.
Frost maintains these two states in a balance, but in the end he or she has miles to go before they sleep. This is like the peace I’ve felt in craft work. Doing my work is the only answer. Thinking about it is not enough, although it might consume a part of my time. I am, after all, a working bird.