earthday greetings

'with all of life' by Deborah Koff-Chapin

‘with all of life’ by Deborah Koff-Chapin

Two of my favorite inspirations greeted me this Earth Day morning. First, Mary Oliver’s wonderful poem, thanks to Writer’s Almanac, resonated with me instantly as the only sane way to start the day. Immediately following,  Deborah Koff-Chapin’s hauntingly moving image in honor of the day. I just happened to see both first thing today!

Although I have been absent from this page for weeks, it is not for lack of inspiration; rather, for being awash in it. But the only way out is through – as true with managing inspiration as anything else, it seems. And so, in the spirit of moving forward gently, with presence and as much consciousness as we can muster, may you also begin your day thus.

I HAPPENED TO BE STANDING
by Mary Oliver

I don’t know where prayers go,
or what they do.
Do cats pray, while they sleep
half-asleep in the sun?
Does the opossum pray as it
crosses the street?
The sunflowers? The old black oak
growing older every year?
I know I can walk through the world,
along the shore or under the trees,
with my mind filled with things
of little importance, in full
self-attendance. A condition I can’t really
call being alive.
Is a prayer a gift, or a petition,
or does it matter?
The sunflowers blaze, maybe that’s their way.
Maybe the cats are sound asleep. Maybe not.

While I was thinking this I happened to be standing
just outside my door, with my notebook open,
which is the way I begin every morning.
Then a wren in the privet began to sing.
He was positively drenched in enthusiasm,
I don’t know why. And yet, why not.
I wouldn’t persuade you from whatever you believe
or whatever you don’t. That’s your business.
But I thought, of the wren’s singing, what could this be
if it isn’t a prayer?
So I just listened, my pen in the air.

“I Happened To Be Standing” by Mary Oliver from A Thousand Mornings. © The Penguin Press, 2012.

PS Yes, I know, Earth Day was several days ago. However, it was while attempting to post this entry that I learned my site had been disabled. And it took most of the week to get it back online. Having put the time into this post after so long away, I decided to go ahead and share it with you. Besides — shouldn’t EVERY day be Earth Day?!!!

as the river

morning stillness

credit – swb

Today is the final day of the five-day haiku challenge at WordPress, first suggested on Monday at DPChallenge. This has been fun and who knows, might even start a new trend. For years I have written a six-line poem a day (thanks to Thich Nhat Hanh’s suggestion). Admittedly, the haiku is less spontaneous, requiring more concentration and focus.  Perhaps the mix will motivate going forward.

And with that, today’s offering:

Tidal rivers fall,
rise, inspiration not with
standing. Poems, too.

swb

circling the fire

fire at the center of the circle

the flame of inspiration

We huddled close as wind rose, pelting rain hard overhead. Our feet nearly touched at fire’s edge as we circled still tighter together. Was that possible? After four months together around this same flame – the one we first eyed with suspicion, the one we longed for between gatherings, the one that inspired us, woke us up, whispered the necessary permissions – here we were at our final gathering.

Words swirled about us, savored from souls stirred inward and onward by silence beneath pounding rain. Or was that our collective heart? Our words prevailed over storm, goodwill over good sense. We stayed later than expected in our own intensity of focused feeling feedback.

And then, one final round of blessings basked in new-found silence. The storm passed, our stories spent, our hearts stirred by the stunning strains of our voices found and shared, we bid farewell into the silence of the stilled storm.

May your going forth be filled with wondrous words

to lead you deep and return you safely home.