Burbling rocks and water sounds inspire poetic reveries

A few offices nestled in law departments ooze the serene contemplativeness of a Japanese rock garden: calm, ordered, soothingly lit, an oasis in chaos. As you relax, you notice it isn’t incense burning, or the Monet poster, or even the indirect lighting with a tinted bulb, not even the lulling lava lamp, or the bowl of chocolates.

No, indeed, the quiet comes from the tiny waterfall in the corner, tinkling and pacifying. Water’s primeval lilt rivals music, which “has charms to soothe a savage breast.” The hint of flowing water washes over jangled nerves and like “sleep that knits up the ravell’d sleeve of care” provides “surcease from sorrow.” That burble helps “when to the sessions of sweet silent thought” we all sometimes yearn to slip.

The susurrus of a stream composes the mind and lets well up pleasure, like poetry (Jan. 3, 2008: no citations to poetry in these posts; and Aug. 31, 2009: a haiku on legal management.).

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