‘Behold, the days are coming,’ declares the Lord,
‘when the plowman shall overtake the reaper and the treader of grapes
him who sows the seed; the mountains shall drip sweet wine,
and all the hills shall flow with it. I will restore
the fortunes of my people Israel, and they shall rebuild the ruined cities
and inhabit them; they shall plant vineyards and drink their wine,
and they shall make gardens and eat their fruit.
I will plant them on their land, and they shall never again be uprooted
out of the land that I have given them,’ says the Lord your God.
The spiders, whom I dreamt about last night, are weaving their webs between the blooming bushes in the garden of our neighbor below. I see the spider, his big, bulbous, grandpa-body, busily climbing along his newly woven net and I wonder at his tenacity. It’s autumn, the leaves are beginning to change. One rainfall and he’s washed away. His hard work in sticky, invisible ruins. But today, he makes hay while the sun shines, up before dawn, weaving his nets to catch his day’s worth of bugs. For soon it will rain nearly every day. I wonder how he knows about this, why he isn’t tempted by lethargy, to sit in the sun and let his net do the work, or to give in altogether. Holland is a hard place to live for those who make their bread in dry weather.
Well, he inspires me. He knows to make hay while the sun shines. In fact, he cannot help but do this. He is a true, full, spider. Living fully in his spider-ness.
Behold, the days are coming. Days when the working shall outnumber the unemployed. Days when social security and welfare are no longer necessary. Days when every man, woman, and child has his piece of land, his purpose, and cannot help but spin like the spider out of love for the land. Days when rested bodies rise sleepily but resoundingly, bare feet pad across the floor toward the window where the sun begins to shine across the budding vineyards. Not long now, ‘til harvest. And where harvest means more than dollars and cents, wages and rewards, but where harvest means celebration. Where women dance barefooted in barrels of grapes, holding onto each other in a laughing, breathless, circle. Where children cheer on their mothers, and men celebrate the beauty of their women, cherishing most what is theirs. Nights where the lanterns stay lit far into the dark night, where long talks, laughter, and wine abound. Where the harvesters begin to forget their poverty. Where they remember who they are, who’ve they’ve always been.
Where in the evenings, the men return with axes slung over their shoulder, tired bodies with dirt-smeared faces, but when they walk together, they cannot talk of anything else but the new city they’re restoring. Brick by brick it goes up, and their women come to bring a midday lunch to eat with their men in the shade, but bring seeds to plant around the walls. They are designing a garden, a garden to rival a king’s.
And in this way, those who were once lonely, cut-off, living in isolated huts far from anyone or anything
those who worked for another, those who lived by greedy days of wages and rewards, who lived within the confines of a balance sheet,
those who could not bear to rise in the morning and look out the window
those who did not know their husband, wife, child, or neighbor
those living in chains, in poverty, banished in exile
those with secrets, mistresses, with two separate lives
have been called home again.