If sadness is near
Then look out at the beauty
And breathe it all in
We are all looking for our own paradise:
Maybe though, it’s really just hidden away in some hidey hole within us.
Maybe paradise is very small and very quiet.
Maybe we’ve been carrying it the whole time.
And maybe it’s time to whisper hello to it so it can creep out and whisper back.
Oh cratered heart
holy like Mother Teresa
and Swiss cheese
Eaten by disappointment
from the moment of conception
birthed into the recycling bin
to be repurposed into something more useful
It becomes a hardened pit
squeezed tight with shuttered angst
surrounded by a sea of tears
whose salt will season the pain
And when the tides subside
and pull away from the gritty sands
it leaves behind a moist wet world
fed by a juicy beating heart
Keep walking on
into the fretful night
where strangers surround your empty mind
maybe they fill that hollow hole
as your hobo self lurches forward
even after you’ve fallen
with your bruised knees
from the crawling you’ve done
to keep you low to the ground
But keep on walking
even though the horizon looks flat
because of the secrets it holds
it may bend to your will
as you approach
Keep on walking
with those weary old feet
which have carried you far
it won’t be long now
Watching an interesting TED talk today about a young Arctic surfer (yes, you heard me right, that was Arctic surfer), he said something that really struck me–not about surfing, but about sacrifice. As you can imagine, someone who surfs in frigid waters does a fair amount of sacrificing. He does it in part to get away from the normal tropic crowds, but also to take these amazing photographs. To paraphrase very loosely he said something like: most things worth any kind of real joy usually involve some kind of sacrifice.
That gave me pause.
I began thinking about some of the things that take sacrifice but bring joy:
There are so many more things…what can you add to the list? And it all comes down to mindset like anything else really. We give to get. Nothing comes easily really. It seems like many things feel like work these days, and trying to pick out the little pieces of joy can be tough. But when you think about the sacrifices we make all adding up to something beautiful–that it’s the wrapping surrounding the gift inside, then it doesn’t feel quite so much like drudgery.
So when you are climbing that next mountain and it feels like hell: the boots are giving you blisters, the sweating like a banshee and the mosquitoes buzzing around your head: remember that when you get to the top you will see this incredible view of the world below. Every step you took to get there was worth what lies before you as you look out. See it as you breathe the joy and try to remember that you couldn’t have experienced the splendor without a bit of pain.