In his poem, “The Peace of Wild Things,” Wendell Berry writes about the solace he finds in the natural world—a countering force to anxiety and fear. Read Berry’s poem below, and then write a poem or piece of prose that focuses in its own way on what the natural world has to offer, and the solace it can provide us, in times of distress or uncertainty.
The Peace of Wild Things
When despair for the world grows in me
and I wake in the night at the least sound
in fear of what my life and my children's lives may be,
I go and lie down where the wood drake
rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds.
I come into the peace of wild things
who do not tax their lives with forethought
of grief. I come into the presence of still water.
And I feel above me the day-blind stars
waiting with their light. For a time
I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
Looking for inspiration? Norah offers her own take with this powerful poem.