Vulnerability is the birthplace of love, belonging, joy, courage, empathy, and creativity. It is the source of hope, empathy, accountability, and authenticity. If we want greater clarity in our purpose or deeper and more meaningful spiritual lives, vulnerability is the path.” ~ Brené Brown, Daring Greatly
Author Archives: ivonprefontaine
It is the end of a long and busy day. I chose this poem as it explored the need to remember who we are and what we belong to, that which went before us. Stephen Spender suggested it is remembering soul’s history and listen for it in the world.
I think continually of those who were truly great.
Who, from the womb, remembered the soul’s history
Through corridors of light where the hours are suns
Endless and singing. Whose lovely ambition
Was that their lips, still touched with fire,
Should tell of the Spirit clothed from head to foot in song.
And those who hoarded from the Spring branches
The desires falling across their bodies like blossoms.
What is precious is never to forget
The essential delight of the blood drawn from ageless springs
Breaking through rocks in the worlds before our earth.
Never to deny its pleasure in the morning simple light
Nor its grave evening demand for love.
Never to allow gradually the traffic to smother
With noise and fog the flowering of the spirit.
Near the snow, near the sun, in the highest fields
See how these names are listed by the waving grass
And by the streamers of white cloud
And whispers of wind in the listening sky.
The names of those who in their lives fought for life
Who wore at their hearts the fire’s center.
Born of the sun they traveled a short while towards the sun,
And left the vivid air signified with their honor.
As I check out for Sabbath, I came across this playful poem by Richard Wilbur. Some days, it is nice to allow the horse to find the way home. It would our personal quixotic and random journey on that given day.
I found this poem n a book about reading and writing poetry called Rules for the Dance by Mary Oliver. The great poets have an eye for great poetry. Life is a dance that brings its own rules.
I read how Quixote in his random ride
Came to a crossing once, and lest he lose
The purity of chance, would not decide
Whither to fare, but wished his horse to choose.
For glory lay wherever he might turn.
His head was light with pride, his horse’s shoes
Were heavy, and he headed for the barn.
Winter approaches. Today, was a dreary day and the trees are becoming littered on the ground as their leaves fall. Yet, as Robert Frost pointed out, there is something lovely in the barrenness of November days. This reminds me that, as fall turns to winter, of a need for the seasonal shifts that bring new life into the world. It is part of the healing process nature provides.
My Sorrow, when she’s there with me,
Thinks these dark days of autumn rain
Are beautiful as days can be;
She loves the bare, the withered tree;
She walks the sodden pasture lane.
Her pleasure will not let me stay,
She talks and I am fain to list;
She’s glad the birds have gone way.
She’s glad her simple worsted gray
Is silver now with clinging mist.
The desolate, deserted trees,
The faded earth, the heavy sky,
The beauties she so truly sees,
She thinks I have no eye for these,
And vexes me for reason why.
Not yesterday, I learned to know
The love of bare November days
Before the coming of the snow,
But it were vain to tell her so,
And they are better for her praise.
It’s cold outside but I have to go.
The river is calling me.
I bundle up; my best over coat, hat, gloves, and scarf.
I walk quickly and breathe the frigid air into my lungs.
I am searching for an answer.
The river is flowing nicely; ripples reflecting the last light of this November day.
I can hear it.
I can see it.
I have thought about this poem a lot lately. It just keeps popping into my head during quiet times. It is a beautiful poem by Derek Walcott. Whenever I read it, it reminds each moment is a fresh beginning and it passes with its own truth contained within it.
As I mature, I get a sense of both getting to know me better and, at the same, realizing how little I know about myself. These feelings would feel counter-intuitive if they did not feel so right.
The time will come
when, with elation,
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror,
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,
and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who loved you
all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,
the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.
In our own age the idea that religion belongs to our private life— that it is, in fact, an occupation for the individual’s hour of leisure—is at once paradoxical, dangerous, and natural. It is paradoxical because this exaltation of the individual in the religious field springs up in an age when collectivism is ruthlessly defeating the individual in every other field.