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I Believe in All That Has Never Yet Been Spoken

I am getting back into a groove after my first full week home. I let things flow a bit this week. Rilke suggested letting go or not contriving in this poem. When I don’t over plan, I find I am more open and accept the flow of things much like the beginner’s mind of a child. Watching children engrossed in play is a reminder that can happen for me as an adult and, as it does, the river widens and flows in every widening channels. Life becomes somehow larger, but not in an explainable way.

Posting images of our trip through Glacier National Park is believing in all that has never yet been spoken. Nature allows me to speak without using words. It is a palette of creation which speaks without speaking and shares without words. It just is and teaches through its presence.

The role of sabbath is to rest on the swelling and ebbing currents and rest in each moment. Perhaps, as I do, I take an expanded mind and soul into next week.

I believe in all that has never been spoken.

I want to free what waits within me

so that what no one has dared to wish for

may for once spring clear

without my contriving.

If this is arrogant, God, forgive me,

but this is what I need to say.

May what I do flow from me like a river,

no forcing and no holding back,

the way it is with children.

Then in those swelling and ebbing currents,

these deepening tides moving out, returning,

I will sing you as no one ever has,

streaming through widening channels

into the open sea.


About ivonprefontaine

In keeping with bell hooks and Noam Chomsky, I consider myself a public and dissident intellectual. Part of my work is to move beyond (transcend) institutional dogmas that bind me to defend freedom, raising my voice to be heard on behalf of those who seek equity and justice in all their forms. I completed my PhD in Philosophy of Leadership Studies at Gonzaga University, Spokane, WA. My dissertation and research was how teachers experience becoming teachers and their role as leaders. I focus on leading, communicating, and innovating in organizations. This includes mindfuful servant-leadership, World Cafe events, Appreciative Inquiry, and expressing one's self through creativity. I offer retreats, workshops, and presentations that can be tailored to your organzations specific needs. I published peer reviewed articles about schools as learning organizations, currere as an ethical pursuit, and hope as an essential element of adult eductaion. I published three poems and am currently preparing my poetry to publish as an anthology of poetry. I present on mindful leadership, servant leadership, schools as learning organizations, how teachers experience becoming teachers, assessement, and critical thinking. I facilitate mindfulness, hospitality retreats. and World Cafe Events using Appreciative Inquiry. I am writing and researching about various forms of leadership, how teachers inform and form their identity as a particular teacher, schools as learning organizations, hope and its anticipatory relationship with the future, and hope as an essential element in learning.

28 responses »

  1. That is truly beautiful and not a single vapor of arrogance. I love this.

  2. Reblogged this on and commented:
    This is truly a beautiful post that it should be reblogged by all of us who read it. May we all in our humanity strive for such a mindset.
    Love – Sheri

  3. I really thought this is perfect. I am glad you had a bit of time away. hugs, Barbara

  4. Reblogged this on idealisticrebel and commented:
    my oldest daughter teaches special education and it is a very hard job that isn’t all that rewarding in that you can’t see the gains made right away, but they are there.

  5. Jackie Saulmon Ramirez

    I like what you wrote above as much as the poem. Nothing clears the mind like getting away from home. My furthest leap was when I lived in Germany for two years– it changed the direction of my life and fostered enormous courage.

  6. I echo the sentiments of all those who wrote before me Ivon – an exceptionally perfect post and mindset..

  7. This is beautiful and it expresses an openness I strive for, but do not always achieve. You wrote: “Watching children engrossed in play is a reminder that can happen for me as an adult and, as it does, the river widens and flows in every widening channels. Life becomes somehow larger, but not in an explainable way.”
    This is the same feeling that I am blessed with sometimes. I have never been able to put it into words, but I call it “the incredible bigness of life.” The other thing that resonated deeply for me is the idea of the river widening and flowing in widening channels. I listened to a neuro-scientist speak about research into empathy. The research concluded that the pathway for empathy in the brain is like a channel in a river and that the more empathetic a person becomes the wider the channel becomes. I don’t really understand the brain research part, but I was struck by the similarity between your description of the river widening and the research on empathy.

    • Thank you for sharing. I am glad this post resonated for you. The research makes sense. The more we use neural pathways the more they grow and can be used.

      This is my ideal and I find I fall far short of what I desire. Knowing it is the ideal helps me be aware when I do fall short.

  8. Reblogged this on What a Heart Can Hold – visit my website at and commented:
    I was a teacher for years and I have never lost my interest in education. This particular blog is about way more than teaching. I found the paragraphs before the poem to be especially meaningful to me and to add meaning to the poem itself.

  9. As I read your poem my response came as follows. (It doesn’t feel finished. It feels like a part thought and so I send you my thought so far..?

    You cannot criticise me for the thoughts in my head. They are yours and mine and his and hers and all considered,
    Neither should I be chastised for the words I have not yet said.
    It is so sad that we so often are, rejection and ridicule as cajoles to conform.
    For those words too often unsaid, started sentences unheard and dismissed that describe the thoughts I do not share paint picture perfect landscapes of a world that could and should be.
    Where expression is witnessed: seen and heard and all contribution valued like the flow of ‘that – your – river,’ a force that channels and carves as it carries
    The source of life and knowledge flowing unforced from all to all others,
    A positive approach reflecting love. Yes LOVE. Almost unconditional so continuously beneficial understanding, appreciating, beauty beheld.

  10. Beautiful expressions. Thank you for sharing. I will revisit soon. Thank you for the likes on my blog. Have a blessed day.

  11. it is so beautiful….. not forcing , not restricting..just let it be as it comes…blissful.


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