Although I don’t share Thomas’ belief in miracles or in an eternal life awaiting me, his poem still speaks to me.
I loved the phrase:
“Life is not hurrying on to a receding future,
Nor hankering after an imagined past”.
As I head towards the end of my working life, I can see that I’ve spent too many years chasing after a future I’ve never quite caught up with. I can also feel, as many people in their sixties seem to, the pull of nostalgia, a smooth veneer that polishes my past into something that I only experience as a story, not a truth.
Thomas’ advice is to take the time to find a “bright field”, a moment of beauty, and recognise that it contains something eternal.
I know I can’t do that. Eternal is a concept that I cant get my mind around.
What I take from Thomas’ poem is that, to enrich the life I have left, I need to let myself see the things around me that speak to me of beauty and truth and of meaning beyond my own brief span.