Beauty in times of tragedy

Janet Blyberg has just published a post showing a few images of quiet Japanese back streets and temple precincts, which through their very beauty commemorate the devastation recently wrought in Japan.

Janet’s images also brought to my mind the emphatic cawing of the large Japanese crows which you can often find congregating in such places. Yesterday I heard them again in some of the footage of the destroyed towns of Miyagi prefecture – formerly bustling ports, now as quiet as a temple compound.

Is the sound of the crows beautiful, or is it awful? Perhaps all I can say is that it moves me.

That is probably why, in a country that has been subject to the whims of nature for milennia, people are moved by falling cherry blossoms: not so much because they are pretty, but because they are falling.

3 Responses to “Beauty in times of tragedy”

  1. Janet Says:

    Perhaps because the earth has been moving beneath their feet for centuries, the Japanese have a special reverence for nature, and are particularly attuned to its whims, both beautiful and awesome. For some reason crows always make the hair on the back of my neck stand up. I always feel like they know something I don’t.

  2. Emile de Bruijn Says:

    Yes the crows seem to speak of the implacability of nature: incomprehensible to us humans, and carrying on regardless.

  3. gaye tapp Says:

    Janet always puts her finger on the pulse-a gift for us all. as a nation-the Japanese are is interesting that on the tv and radio many Japanese Americans talk about their time in interment camps, surviving the Bomb and how they were taught stoicism, patience, dignity. how they have suffered collectively gives them that endurance we have little understanding of . significant attached to augurs in Roman myth- the crow according to what I have read-does know.

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