Ode argued compellingly that marking time with natural rhythms and seasons can grow compassion and commitment to all life. The underlying wistfulness and enhanced "sensitivity to the passage of the seasons" is embodied in the likes of Monty Don, who combines a kanyini-like love for the soil and place, with a sense of gratitude that seems to come "from the other side of sorrow and despair".
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Of Mice and Men - redux? Chastening and often stunning images of the impact that global recession can have in our day and age might suggest so, yet the blooming sunflower might suggest too that hope springs eternal or, as Roy Harper puts it so lyrically, "through all destruction flies new dawn".
Man such sunflowers constantly emerge, displaying a wide variety of proposed "antidotes to the pessimism of the post-crisis world". If you'd like to hear constructive suggestions for our way ahead economically, you could also listen to the following podcasts:
We can regard our life as a uselessly disturbing episode in the blissful repose of nothingness... . It may be said of it: 'It is bad today and every day it will get worse, until the worst of all happens.' - Arthur Schopenhauer
Life is a rainbow which also includes black - Yevgeny Yevtushenko
I don't consider myself a pessimist. I think of a pessimist as someone who is waiting for it to rain. And I feel soaked - Leonard Cohen
Get rhythm when you get the blues - Johnny Cash http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2010/dec/26/tobias-jones-a-life-…