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Rich Soil

“Poetry keeps the door open to awe and ensures that we will find our way through the broken heart field of wars, losses and betrayals to understanding, compassion and gathering together.”― Joy Harjo

“The day misspent,
the love misplaced,
has inside it
the seed of redemption.
Nothing is exempt
from resurrection.”
― Kay Ryan, Say Uncle

Forgive and be forgiven.
Let go to pick up new and fresh.
Allow worry but do not let it drive.
In the complexity, simplicity.
In the simplicity, complexity.
Amplify your heart to overcome narrow and surface, dig deeper.
Seeds of redemption.
Nothing exempt from resurrection.
Root, nurture, bloom in the soil of love.

“He spent too much of his time responding to disasters that never happened.”― Ann Cleeves, The Heron’s Cry

Never Enough Sunsets

“True love begins when nothing is looked for in return.”― Antoine De Saint-Exupery

“This equation has helped many people I know identify the difference between practicing happiness and pursuing it. When my happiness feels elusive, I tend to ask myself, “What am I not being grateful for, and what am I pursuing that’s distracting me from that gratitude?”― Chip Conley, Emotional Equations: Simple Truths for Creating Happiness + Success

Gratitude interrupts scarcity, broadens horizons, expands perspective.
Practice over pursuit.
The daily work of attention and awe, a new math.
Acceptance and joy amidst imperfection, detours and delays.
Transforming ordinary, sometimes difficult days into perfect love, overflowing with abundance.

“So blessed are you who say this did not add up. I had hoped these choices I made. The life I tried so hard to pick would add up to something meaningful. But now I’m left without many choices at all. Left wondering, did I pick? Right. Did I waste my days? What should I have done differently? This limited life is what it means to be human in our failures and bad, bad math, in our best intentions and hardest work, in our waylaid hopes and far off dreams. In the love that is never, ever too late to give or receive. Maybe success and happiness can mean something different now. On the other side of a life changed when minutes become moments and there will never be enough sunsets or handholds or jokes shared. But there is never, ever too much love.” – Kate Bowler

Under All Silences

“Love is the voice under all silences, the hope which has no opposite in fear; the strength so strong mere force is feebleness: the truth more first than sun, more last than star…”― e.e cummings

“the hugeness of the world was a pool to dive into, not somewhere to drown.”― Ann Cleeves, The Moth Catcher

Fog lifts.
Skies clear.
Clouds return.
Rainbows appear.
Sun rises.
Sun sets.
Stand, kneel, in awe of those fleeting moments.
Beauty to prompt wonder and reverence.
Exhale and enter the rhythm of breath, the flow of life unfolding.
Sacred ground.

“Remember you are this universe and this universe is you.”― Joy Harjo, She Had Some Horses

The Root of It

“To be nobody but
yourself in a world
which is doing its best day and night to make you like
everybody else means to fight the hardest battle
which any human being can fight and never stop fighting.”― e.e cummings

“We are all here to serve each other. At some point we have to understand that we do not need to carry a story that is unbearable. We can observe the story, which is mental; feel the story, which is physical; let the story go, which is emotional; then forgive the story, which is spiritual, after which we use the materials of it to build a house of knowledge.”― Joy Harjo, Poet Warrior: A Memoir

What lies beneath the surface that keeps rising up?
Get to the root of it, the source below, deeper
If it’s a weed – resentment, guilt, unforgiveness – pull it
If it’s a seed – dreams, aspirations, yearning – feed it
Something is trying to break open, break free
Clarity comes when we are open to receive it, receptive to answers not conscious but subconscious
Weeds and flowers reside together
Each telling us what we need to know, to grow or wilt under the weight
Expose it to the light
Create a new stories, rooted in hope, joy and beauty

“Keep your Eyes on All that’s Good and Beautiful and Possible in the World. Because “The Stories We Tell Create the People We Become.”― Jacqueline Lewis, Life Begins at the End of Your Comfort Zone

Might Be Joy

“It’s possible to understand the world from studying a leaf. You can comprehend the laws of aerodynamics, mathematics, poetry and biology through the complex beauty of such a perfect structure.
It’s also possible to travel the whole globe and learn nothing.”― Joy Harjo, The Woman Who Fell from the Sky: Poems

“Because in trying to articulate what, perhaps, joy is, it has occurred to me that among other things—the trees and the mushrooms have shown me this—joy is the mostly invisible, the underground union between us, you and me, which is, among other things, the great fact of our life and the lives of everyone and thing we love going away. If we sink a spoon into that fact, into the duff between us, we will find it teeming. It will look like all the books ever written. It will look like all the nerves in a body. We might call it sorrow, but we might call it a union, one that, once we notice it, once we bring it into the light, might become flower and food. Might be joy.”― Ross Gay, The Book of Delights

Do nothing.
Observe everything.
Receive alone.
Be made new by awe, by wonder.
Invisible but present.
Pause to notice.
Emergence bubbling up.

“Helped are those who are content to be themselves; they will never lack mystery in their lives and the joys of self-discovery will be constant.”― Alice Walker, The Temple of My Familiar

Of Wild Things

“I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief… For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.” – Wendell Berry

“Bless the poets, the workers for justice, the dancers of ceremony, the singers of heartache, the visionaries, all makers and carriers of fresh meaning—We will all make it through, despite politics and wars, despite failures and misunderstandings. There is only love.”― Joy Harjo, Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings: Poems

Underneath the busy, the noise, the fast, fresh meaning awaits harvest, celebration.
Beyond the past, the future, the momentary struggle, the now awaits attention, rest.
Above, below, all around, the peace of the wild things opens space and creates place to discover, uncover, rediscover love, that always remains whether we see it or not, steep.
Rest in the grace of the world.

“I need a song that will keep sky open in my mind. If I think behind me, I might break. If I think forward, I lose now.”― Joy Harjo, Conflict Resolution for Holy Beings: Poems

Push Through

“Your hopes, dreams and aspirations are legitimate. They are trying to take you airborne, above the clouds, above the storms, if you only let them.”― William James

“Beyond the very extremity of fatigue distress, amounts of ease and power that we never dreamed ourselves to own, sources of strength habitually not taxed at all, because habitually we never push through the obstruction.”― William James

A shift
A twist
A possibility
What if?
How about?
Why not?
Flip the equation.
Release, assumption, opinion and judgment.
The push, one more step.
Allow, invite, consider new thoughts, altering of attitude.

“The greatest discovery of any generation is that a human can alter his life by altering his attitude.”― William James

Greet

“Hello, sun in my face. Hello you who made the morning and spread it over the fields…Watch, now, how I start the day in happiness, in kindness.”― Mary Oliver

“Ten times a day something happens to me like this – some strengthening throb of amazement – some good sweet empathic ping and swell. This is the first, the wildest and the wisest thing I know: that the soul exists and is built entirely out of attentiveness.”― Mary Oliver

May you greet this day with anticipation
Curiosity
Awe
Wonder
Kindness
Generosity
Openness
Gratitude
Joy
Ease
A smile
A song
An embrace
Greet with abandon, be held in amazement
Attentiveness of the soul.

“I believe in kindness. Also in mischief. Also in singing, especially when singing is not necessarily prescribed.”― Mary Oliver

To Labor and Wait

In the labor and the waiting, may you find joy throughout.
Alive in the living present.
Awake in this very moment.

Psalm of Life
by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow

“Tell me not, in mournful numbers,
Life is but an empty dream!
For the soul is dead that slumbers,
And things are not what they seem.

Life is real! Life is earnest!
And the grave is not its goal;
Dust thou art, to dust returnest,
Was not spoken of the soul.

Not enjoyment, and not sorrow,
Is our destined end or way;
But to act, that each to-morrow
Find us farther than to-day.

Art is long, and Time is fleeting,
And our hearts, though stout and brave,
Still, like muffled drums, are beating
Funeral marches to the grave.

In the world’s broad field of battle,
In the bivouac of Life,
Be not like dumb, driven cattle!
Be a hero in the strife!

Trust no Future, howe’er pleasant!
Let the dead Past bury its dead!
Act,— act in the living Present!
Heart within, and God o’erhead!

Lives of great men all remind us
We can make our lives sublime,
And, departing, leave behind us
Footprints on the sands of time;

Footprints, that perhaps another,
Sailing o’er life’s solemn main,
A forlorn and shipwrecked brother,
Seeing, shall take heart again.

Let us, then, be up and doing,
With a heart for any fate;
Still achieving, still pursuing,
Learn to labor and to wait.”

Hues of Change

“Autumn is a second spring when every leaf is a flower.” – Albert Camus

“Nature will bear the closest inspection. She invites us to lay our eye level with her smallest leaf, and take an insect view of its plain.” – Henry David Thoreau

Hues of change, unfolding
Rainbow of colors melting one into the next
A kaleidoscope of artistry in a leaf amidst transition
Slowly, surely, and unseen if we bypass the pause, the gaze
Second spring where nature shows off, seasons dance
A masterclass in transformation, beauty the professor.

“Every particular in nature, a leaf, a drop, a crystal, a moment of time is related to the whole, and partakes of the perfection of the whole.” – Ralph Waldo Emerson

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