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Posts Tagged ‘interdependence’

 

 

 

The spam email was simple. Subject: Why?

Body: Answer me. And I thought of Einstein,

who wrote a brief letter to Miss Marion Block,

a woman who had written first to him,

overcome as she was by two world wars.

 

He wrote: The question “Why” in the human sphere

is easy to answer: to create satisfaction

for ourselves and for other people.

 

Almost 800 years earlier,

Rumi answered the same question, saying,

Oh soul, you worry too much.

 

I, too, like Miss Block, like the spammer,

like the soul, I, too, have stood beneath the stars

and asked Why, Why?

And this week, I received in the mail

a typed letter signed from The Universe,

saying, You know this, but may have forgotten:

you have been given a special task

to complete on Earth … the world needs you.

 

And the words from The Universe

leap from the page to form new constellations

inside me and I see so clearly

that I am one of many, many stars,

no longer capable of thinking I’m in this for myself,

certain that we shine for each other.

 

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More and more, I have come to admire resilience.

            —Jane Hirshfield, “Optimism”

 

 

And when the snap peas ran out of fence to climb,

they created a living trellis of leaf and vine

and climbed up themselves, winding

and twisting toward the sun—

there’s green inside your limbs.

There’s braiding to be done.

 

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Here is the heart

asking the bells to be quiet

so that it might hear

its own beating.

 

Here is the blind man

who climbs the mountain

by listening to the song of bells

worn by the guide in front of him.

The path is getting steeper.

Oh heart, there’s no reason

to pretend you’re alone.

We’re all wearing bells

for each other. We all

need a song to follow.

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Once Upon

Only a moment, I thought,
just a moment of pulling your breath

into mine would buoy me
through whole oceans of days,

days I would otherwise drown in
save for a single shared moment.

But here I am, beneath the surface,
near out of air, gasping, longing for

hours, no, days, no, whole epochs of closeness
with no sense of starting or ending.

How soon a woman wants more.
I try to fill my pockets with things

that float—the clean scent of spring
and the song of whatever bird that is

outside the window. I try to find
my own lightness I have found before.

I tell myself, this is only a story,
as I sink further down, as the blue deepens.

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