I sit and watch
Oh! ’twas very sad and lonely
When I found myself the only
Population on this cultivated shore;
But I’ve made a little tavern
In a rocky little cavern,
And I sit and watch for people at the door…
Then we gather as we travel,
Bits of moss and dirty gravel,
And we chip off little specimens of stone;
And we carry home as prizes
Funny bugs, of handy sizes,
Just to give the day a scientific tone.
— Charles Edward Carryl (verses from the poem “Robinson Crusoe’s Story“)
I first encountered this delightful poem when I read a brief reference to it in a journal entry by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. When I looked up the poem and read the verse cited first above, I immediately thought of myself and this blog. In a whimsical way that I could never fully explain, it just seemed to fit perfectly.
When I looked for a photo to go with it, though, the one posted above jumped out at me. We came across this interesting little walled enclosure on the island of Sint Maarten (the Dutch side, if I remember correctly), and I begged Jeff to pose there for me, because the structure reminded me so much of him. Mostly private, but occasionally accessible, especially through the eyes. As you can see in the photo, he wasn’t enthusiastic about letting me snap his picture. He never is, but sometimes he humors me.
Whether we are labeled as introverts or extroverts, all of us must sometimes feel the sting of loneliness, countered by the self-protective impulses that cause us to retreat to our “rocky little cavern(s).” But to mix metaphors here, no person is an island, even if (as Ashleigh Brilliant has so aptly said) “some of us are long peninsulas.” I know I watch for people at the door, and I bet you do too.
So now that you are here, come on in! We’d love to know more about you. If you’ve brought any bits of moss or specimens of stone, or funny bugs or whatever you have gathered over the years, please share them with us! Try not to worry too much about wasting a few minutes here today. As Robinson Crusoe learned, anything that can’t be done by Friday probably isn’t all that urgent to begin with. 😀
One year ago today:
- Posted in: Uncategorized
- Tagged: community, connections, experiences, extroverts, friends, introverts, life, loneliness, meetings, memories, people, visits
That which is whimsical, and even some self-protective impulses, are areas worth exploring. They may be very good!
Yes, there are all kinds of tools in the toolbox, and each of them is needed sometime or other. 😀
Eric, thanks for sharing the link to this post! It’s a blog I follow, although lately I am so far behind on EVERYBODY’s blogs that I would not have seen it for some time, most likely.
“Done by Friday …” That’s good! I could use a Friday or two!
When we open our bag and look at the assortment of moss and grit (and other valuable trinkets) that we’ve picked up along the way, it sure is telling, isn’t it? Even if someone is with you on the adventure, the two of you will collect completely different items. It can be hard to show someone our bag; they wouldn’t understand.
On the other hand, if we each show each other something, tentative piece by piece, and really listen, both of our experiences can be enriched.
Thank you, Julia, for sharing the precious bits in your bag. You are a gem!
Susan, I love this comment! You totally “plugged in” to the part of the poem that spoke to me. Thanks for your kind words. I wish I had time to say more, but I’m writing this on borrowed wifi time at the USO, and it’s time to go board…I’ll try to check back in tonight. To whomever is reading these comments, thanks for being here! I will try to get some of this done by Friday (hee-hee, I couldn’t resist). 😀
Julia, good morning. Delightful pic!
When traveling, I always want to gather bits and pieces to bring home. 🙂
Thank you Merry! I’m the same way. In fact, I really identified with the NCOIC in Saving Private Ryan who saved dirt from every country or battlefield in little jars in his bag. I have tiny pine cones from Pikes Peak, Banff and other places — but I’m not sure which are which now! I need to be better at labeling!
Julia as I first started reading”The theme song to that 80’s TV Show “Cheers” popped into my mind”.. Be blessed( I could of said” What was that show Family Matters and tha tsong was ‘Days gone by” I digress lol
Raynard, I always used to think the words to that song from Cheers sounded more like a church than a bar in my ears. But it’s true, we all want a place to belong. I think it’s safe to say that everyone who is here very often knows your name! We think of you every time we digress — in a good way!!! Hope you are having a great weekend!
Oh my goodness, Julia. This is so clever, so well thought out, perfectly compiled and fun. Well, you get the drift of what I’m saying? I so enjoyed it, actually all day long. It was worth every minute, no waste there! I read the poem to Bill this early morning while he ate breakfast. I love it when he laughs while still sleepy. 🙂
Sheila, I’m so glad you like it! I just love a catchy little rhyme like that one. I don’t know how rhyming poetry ever fell out of favor with literary snobs, because I think mastery of meter and rhyme is far more difficult than free verse. Not to mention more fun!