Senses Cure The Soul

Tomorrow (November 30, 2016) will mark the 116th anniversary of the death of my literary hero, Oscar Wilde. Many is the time that I find myself thinking about his work and his life – enhanced by the fact that I am currently engrossed in, and enthralled by, the Oscar Wilde Murder Mysteries by Gyles Brandreth. Many is the time, too, that I have quoted some of his most famous lines, phrases and aphorisms, though they do, at times, fall on deaf ears.

One of my favourite Wildean quotes is, “Nothing can cure the soul but the senses, just as nothing can cure the senses but the soul.” I find myself coming back to this line time and again, especially when I feel as if the weight of life is getting a little too much bear. At those times, I bring Oscar’s words to mind, and, more often than not, will find that my attention is grasped by the sight of a bird on the wing, the scent of a rose in the uplifting breeze, a butterfly spreading its wings in the morning sun, or some other facet of Nature’s beauty that makes me stop, makes me breathe, makes me grounded once more.

This morning was just such a moment. I had slept fitfully and woke up feeling as if my head was stuffed full of cotton wool and that I was on the threshold of coming down with a cold. After feeding all my cats, one of them promptly projectile vomited over his – and several other – food bowls, meaning that they all had to be emptied, washed and refilled. One of the cats then used his litter tray, only bizarrely sat in it the wrong way round and peed over the side and, consequently, over the floor. Cue mopping the floor and emptying the litter tray so that I could clean the bottom of it. All this took up a good 45 minutes, and I hadn’t even properly woken up yet. So when my smiling husband came out of the office after checking his emails and said, in his normal smiling way, “What’s for breakfast?”, I’m afraid I opened my mouth to speak and my mother came out.

“Shit with sugar on!” I said, and, bag of cat litter and cat pee soaked tissues in hand, I flounced outside, determined to throw them as furiously as possible in the main bin!

The air was dry, icy and cold, but taking a huge lungful of it did me the world of good. I looked around at the frost covered ground, and was struck by the sight of a couple of frosted leaves glinting in the light and the sound of the treetops thawing out in the morning sun. The sight of a golden leaf, its edges encrusted with ice crystals, lazily placed amongst the mulch and other frosted leaves at the side of the garden, I found particularly beautiful. I thought I would take a photo to share with you. I hope you find it as beautiful as I do.


In our modern culture of wanting everything to be done yesterday, of hustling and bustling here, there and everywhere with no time for ourselves, let alone anyone or anything else, we are missing the beauty that is all around us. Mother Nature has a lot to tell us, if only we would stop awhile and listen.

Whenever you feel as if the weight of life is getting too much to bear, remember to stop, close your eyes, and breathe. Remember too, the words of Oscar Wilde, and let your senses cure your soul.



11 thoughts on “Senses Cure The Soul

  1. Love Oscar Wild also. I really enjoyed how you put life into perspective with this post. Thanks for sharing. -Fallen
    “Every Saint has a past, Every Sinner has a future.” ~Oscar Wilde

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh, I just LOVE this!! And I share the same felling!

    Being my daughter a preteen now, I find it harder and harder to convince her to come along with me in my outings. I sometimes feel like “let her be, doing her own thing” …but then I turn the car around and come back to pick her up, trying to ignore her unhappy mood about by persistence. So, I “drag” her with me to my walks in the woods or dunes, and I drag her with me to pray in an empty church (once in a while…). Because no matter what do you believe in, or what paths you choose in life, you can always find peace and healing when you stand by yourself in nature or in an empty church! And I want my daughter to grow familiar with this and have these “tools” in her battles ahead.
    Thank you for this post… it is delightful.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Thank you so much! What a lovely comment. Keep persevering with your daughter. I’ve often observed that whilst they put on a facade of “boring” or “whatever” or (especially these days “does it have WiFi?”, children take in far more than they let on. My nephew, when he was in his early teens, was taken on a trip to an abandoned church. His mum (my sister) said that if you stopped for a while and listened, you could hear the echoes of all those who had gone before. My nephew just rolled his eyes. Later that evening though, she overheard him on the phone to his friend, and he was saying how amazing this place was, and how you could hear the echoes, like ghosts, of other people. When he saw his mum though, he said “but it was boring really.” Kids eh?

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  3. Cats never seem to run short of inspiration when it comes to exasperating new ways to make a mess, do they? I have said a lot of things first thing in the morning when confronted with the chaos from the night before, compounded by continual additions to it before I have had a chance to clear it up, together with pained bleats for food, first -but “shit with sugar on” is a lovely new one. I think I will write it out and sellotape it to the fridge.


  4. Pingback: Breathe, Relax | Do Not Annoy The Writer

  5. I love this: “I opened my mouth to speak and my mother came out.”.

    It struck me firstly because it’s an amusing and image-laden thing to say. But then I got thinking some more and realised that it also reminds me of your Oscar Wilde quote “Most people are other people”, and I connected this with what I’ve learned recently about ego depletion; when things get stressy, our thinking brains shut down, leaving the reptile brain (and maybe the superego and/or id) to burn through to the outside.

    Liked by 1 person

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