Sunlight through the branches of a fir tree

Dark Angels Note 106

Dearest Friends,

Welcome back to our weekly Note.

Won’t you join us for a little saunter in the woods…



This week we’re celebrating a simple approach to life by observing the birthday of Henry David Thoreau (July 12, 1817 – May 6, 1862), writer, teacher, nature lover, pencil maker and philosopher.

Thoreau was an important contributor to American literature and philosophy. His most well-known work Walden was the result of a two-year experiment in simple living.

Detaching himself from the trappings of town life, he went to live in the woods in a self-built cabin on the shore of Walden Pond.

Immersed in beautiful surroundings, on land owned by his friend Ralph Waldo Emerson, Thoreau spent his time walking, writing, and paying attention to the verdant boreal landscape.

“I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived.”

– Walden

Not one to stick to the rules, not only did he defy conventions of how to live, he also wonderfully uses the word ‘not’ not once, not twice, but three times in one sentence.



“What business have I in the woods, if I am thinking of something out of the woods?”

– Walking

In his essay, Walking, Thoreau explores our interaction and relationship with the natural world around us.

Pay attention to your surroundings and appreciate the simple pleasure of walking in nature with a guided walking meditation.



In the second chapter of Walden, Where I Lived and What I Lived For, Thoreau outlines his location and purpose. Take one or both of the following questions as a prompt.

Where do I live?

What do I live for?



This week’s Sharing is from James Gregory, a regular on our Tuesday Gatherings.



James R. Gregory


Who made the decision

To cancel this morning’s flight?


It must have been for reasons

That common man cannot fathom


Perhaps an engine was dangling

To the wing by a single bolt


Maybe the pilot was late

Returning from a war zone


Perhaps the crew went on strike

Demanding cheaper fares for customers


More likely it was because the flight

Was not filled to the brim and therefore unprofitable


Whoever made the decision didn’t care

About my plans for the day


Whoever made the decision without

An explanation was thoughtless to the core


What’s that you say?

You will compensate me?

For my inconvenience you say?

Very thoughtful, thanks so much.


Send us your wonderful poems, writings, links and writerly whatnots that you’d like to share with the wider Dark Angels family.


Weekly Tuesday Gatherings
There will be an intermittent service of Tuesday gatherings over the next few weeks, as we take a break for the summer. Neil will next be hosting on August 16. Back to normal from August 30.

Join us for a reflective hour of reading, writing and communing led by Neil Baker. Everyone is welcome; in fact, invite a friend along. We meet at 7pm UK time. To join us, click here on the night. There’s no need to register in advance and we’ll be using the same link every week from now on.


Be well, keep reading, keep writing and know that we’re always here..

From everyone at Dark Angels