Just Right


“In the right place, under the right conditions, you can finally stretch out into what you are supposed to be. ” — Lab Girl by Hope Jahren

 

How long do we wait for the right place and the right conditions? It may seem to some of us that we take a long time to stretch out; that we spend much of our lives contorted and bursting apart just to come together again. I have.

The right conditions seem to involve some sort of special magic; a particular brew that mixes together to concoct the spell where the microcosm in which we move feels easy and the skin that we wear no longer needs tailoring.

Some folks that we meet seem to have been born with this magic as they whirl around with the twinkling Universe hovering nearby. But most of us aren’t so lucky. Some of us seek it, but I see now this maybe isn’t how it works. It may be more like how a seed turns into a tree. It’s just dumb luck. It just waits encased in its shell until all the conditions are perfect and then bursts forth into the world.

But most don’t get this far.

Maybe I’ve just tried too hard to make everything happen. Can I be more like that seed? Just quietly sitting on the forest floor gathering the magic conditions to crack me open. Will I be one of the lucky ones?

And once I am that wonderful entity, crawling with life and fluttering with each breath of wind, my roots firmly reaching in all directions: then I will know I am who I am supposed to be.

Poem: Stillness


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In stillness

times when I sat

hushed under ancient pines

back brushed up against wizened skin

small

yet safe

cradled silently

beneath an immobile mammoth

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In stillness

near a whispering brook

whose words spoke sense

when nothing else could

they drifted past

in bubbles of music

floating by

in ripples of spray

to be caught in moments

of calm

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And in stillness

sitting upon the hill

with warmth from above

creatures close by

and sharing the peace

near by voices are small

and my belly is round

while the world is spinning beyond

In stillness

In stillness

It lies

 

 

 

Poem: Bull Pine


I sat beneath the bull pine

When all the other kids were off

Its warm rough skin comforting my city kid back

Looking up through the sun slit glinting

We promised to care for each other

The cups of water tenderly carried

Making sure the roots were fed

And my quiet moments in returnr

The yet unknown parts of me

That longed for this peace

Took drinks of solitude

From the cup offered

By the spirit of the tree

 

 

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Poem : Rings


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Count the rings
The mounting miles curl round
Concentric circles
Piling on top of each other
With splintered sanity

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Burning wings
Flying too close to the sun
Butterfly
All the disguises
Through life

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Crossing
Constantly
From within to face value
Here to there
To nowhere

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It is finally ahead
Years in the making
That place up ahead
Which is now
Filled with peace

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Pick a poignant path
Walk with the next phase of your life
It’s fresh and clear
And will open new horizons

The Window


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My last full day in my home and the small New England area where I’ve been for 20 years broke to drizzly skies and patter of rain out of my bedroom window. It is a window at the head of my bed whose scene wakes me every morning I arise. The seasons turn through that window–from the buzzing, blooming, brilliant days of summer; views of small trees heavy with fruit and painted with warm colors of autumn; or the swirling fury of the blizzard beating at my screen making my yard a winter wonderland; and finally to the tender shoots and leaves of spring time.

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I took my usual walk despite the gentle rain, my lake seeming solemn. My trees appeared to weep thus making me cry. The lake brought me such peace. It’s beauty and secrets: the loons mournful cries, the solitary heron and mallard pair returning each year to greet me. Each with their lessons for me about flying solo and about love. Each sunrise and sunset utterly beautiful, no material gift could match. And the tender quiet that I know I may not find where I am going.

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On the road was a bright red salamander brought out by the dampness. Of course I had to save two today from being squished. It is like a fire dragon and filled me with the hope of sun and a bright future.

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With every new journey, we leave something behind. Through every window, we may see the day ahead, but we also live within the house on the other side. Tomorrow I leave that house and head toward a new one.

It will have new windows and new days for me to embrace.

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