Monday, April 23, 2012


May Lilies shine with
Wetness of night fallen
Rain drops still falling
From Spruce branches
High overhead where
Thrush song sings and
Rings in long sustained
Tones through the forest
While hidden among the
Underbrush with petite
Perky living and upright
Tail clinging to lower
Branches of Elderberries
A Winter Wren rejoices
To sing her morning 
Chorus with agility
Of voice and verse
Lifting a grey day
By such colors in song. 

~by David Robinson
Photo by Biopix: N Sloth

Monday, February 13, 2012


My soul, an empty birdfeeder,
Attracts no winged thing,
Without the seed among cedar,
The forest seldom sings.
On Sabbath morn come fill anew
This empty heart of mine;
With suet cakes and seeds to woo,
The feathered life divine.
“God’s little theologians”* come
To teach my soul your story;
No anxious cares within this home,
When filled with heaven’s glory.

*Martin Luther’s affectionate term for birds
D. Robinson 3.18.11

Friday, December 2, 2011

Advent Rising

A song bird sings into my ear,
"Awake thy soul to sing"
Of morning light and ever near
A sense of wondering,
What lies ahead, what lies ahead?
My heartbeat asks again,
As day awakens me from bed
To walk out in the rain.
The mist hangs low and heavily 
Uniting sea to sky.
My heart leaps up and readily
I yearn to learn to fly.
The eastern skies illuminate
With lavenders and red
The sleepy headlands as they wait
The advent rising from the dead.

By David Robinson

Monday, November 21, 2011


Quotations from the writings of Dr. Albert Schweitzer (1875-1965), winner of the Nobel Peace Prize in 1952:

"At times our own light goes out and is rekindled by a spark from another person. Each of us has cause to think with deep gratitude of those who have lighted the flame within us. To educate yourself for the feeling of gratitude means to take nothing for granted, but to always seek out and value the kind that will stand behind the action. Nothing that is done for you is a matter of course. Everything originates in a will for the good, which is directed at you. Train yourself never to put off the word or action for the expression of gratitude. The greatest thing is to give thanks for everything. He who has learned this knows what it means to live. He has penetrated the whole mystery of life: giving thanks for everything (Thoughts for Our Times p. 16)."

"When I look back upon my early days I am stirred by the thought of the number of people whom I have to thank for what they gave me or for that they were to me. At the same time I am haunted by an oppressive consciousness of the little gratitude I really showed them while I was young. How many of them have said farewell to life without my having made clear to them what it meant to me to receive from them so much kindness or so much care! Many a time have I, with a feeling of shame, said quietly to myself over a grave the words which my mouth ought to have spoken to the departed, which he was still in the flesh. For all that, I think I can say with truth that I am not ungrateful, I did occasionally wake up out of that youthful thoughtlessness which accepted as a matter of course all the care and kindness that I experienced from others, and I believe I became sensitive to my duty in this matter just as early as I did to the prevalence of suffering in the world. But down to my twentieth year, and even later still, I did not exert myself sufficiently to express the gratitude which was really in my heart. I valued too low the pleasure felt at receiving real proofs of gratitude. Often, too, shyness prevented me from expressing the gratitude that I really felt. . . .  We ought all to make an effort to act on our first thoughts and let our unspoken gratitude find expression. Then there will be more sunshine in the world, and more power to work for what is good. But as concerns ourselves we must all of us take care not to adopt as part of our theory of life all people’s bitter sayings about the ingratitude of the world. A great deal of water is flowing underground which never comes up as a spring. In that thought we may find comfort. But we ourselves must try to be the water which does find its way up; we must become a spring at which men can quench their thirst for gratitude (Memoirs of Childhood and Youth, pp. 87-88)."

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Live Simply that Others May Simply Live

 Questions in Mid-November:
  • How does your family celebrate Thanksgiving?
  • What was a typical pattern in your family growing up at a family meal?  
  • What has always been one of your favorite meals or a favorite recipe you love to make?
  • Have you ever grown a garden and share with your family food you've grown?
  • If you live with a family, how many family meals do you share each week currently?
    1-4             5-8                          9-12                 13-16                   17-21
Study for Mid-November:
  • Read Exodus 12:3-11. What does this passage tell us about sacred family mealtimes in the Jewish faith? What stands out for you in this passage?What is unique about Passover in a Jewish home? 
  • Read Isaiah 58:6-12. What does this passage say about how we are to share our food, our lives, our meals, our resources? How do you fast? What is the relationship between feasting and fasting in your experience? 
  • Read Luke 22:7-20. What does this passage tell us about sacred family mealtimes in the Christian faith and the roots of the Lord’s Supper in the Jewish faith? What stands out for you in this passage?
  • Read Luke 24:28-31. Describe the setting of this story. What surprises are here?
Life application for Mid-November:
  • What have been your experiences of fasting?
  • How do you know the difference between a “need” and a “want”, between what is essential and what is a luxury?
  • What world hunger groups have you supported?
  •   How are you seeking to “live simply that others may simply live”? *(phrase attributed to Ghandi and Mother Teresa among others)

Monday, November 7, 2011

To Autumn

To Autumn, a sonnet

A dying orange Maple leaf descends,
Through misty morning stillness in the trees
Into the canopy my eye ascends
Among the fiery red and yellow leaves.
To meditate upon a mystery
My anxious soul awakens to the dawn
To wrestle with death’s angel suddenly
Alive and just as quickly he is gone.
Deep within the forest stands a door
A portal to our everlasting home
To know what lies beyond and what’s in store
Follow in his steps where he did roam.
An inner voice assures me with a prod
“Be still, be still, and know that I am God.”

*Psalm 46:10
Written by David Robinson, October 26, 2011
Dedicated to Don Robinson (9/20/1931--11/1/2011)

Monday, October 31, 2011

Contemplative Photography

3:oopm, this Saturday, Nov. 5th, in Cannon Beach, Oregon, at the Coaster Theater, ONE DAY IN THE LIFE OF CANNON BEACH: a nature photo slideshow and solo piano concert, created by Thomas Robinson and David Robinson. This show includes 400 Thomas Robinson nature photos from pre-dawn, sunrise, midday, afternoon, sunset, evening and night. During the photo slideshow, David will play original solo piano mediations on grand piano. 

"Prayers in silence and quiet, of course have their own validity. It is not always necessary to express our prayers out loud. The simplest prayer, perhaps, is that of quiet contemplation. We place ourselves in the presence of the divine. Some pilgrims also find photography an expression of silent contemplation. By looking through the lens and focusing upon some aspect of the landscape or the interior of a grand cathedral, a person comes to new awareness that might be missed by trying to take everything in at a glance. Using a camera, as Thomas Merton discovered on his final pilgrimage to Thailand, can be a form of prayer." ~from "Pilgrimage: Exploring a Great Spiritual Practice", by Edward C. Sellner (Notre Dame, IN: Sorin Books, 2004), 145.

Photo: 7 minute exposure of star trails over Haystack Rock