What are the roots that clutch, what branches grow
Out of this stony rubbish? Son of man,
You cannot say, or guess, for you know only
A heap of broken images, where the sun beats,
And the dead tree gives no shelter, the cricket no relief,
And the dry stone no sound of water. Only
There is shadow under this red rock,
(Come in under the shadow of this red rock),
And I will show you something different from either
Your shadow at morning striding behind you
Or your shadow at evening rising to meet you;
I will show you fear in a handful of dust.
T.S. Eliot from “The Wasteland”
There is justifiable fear in and of this broken world — as when a mountain blasts part of itself into the sky on a quiet Sunday morning or when a wall of water washes away everything in its path after an otherwise survivable earthquake.
I have seen the aftermath wasteland of Mt. St. Helens decades later as the land slowly rejuvenates from the ashes. Now after four years (today) the villages surrounding the beautiful city of Sendai, Japan leveled in a tsunami of devastating power are rebuilding from the dust and mud.
Fear is never the end of the story. It is part of the story, but dust that is breathed upon becomes Love that heals. Only a handful of dust, but it has come to repair this broken world.