As Once the Winged Energy of Delight
As once the winged energy of delight
carried you over childhood’s dark abysses,
now beyond your own life build the great
arch of unimagined bridges.
Wonders happen if we can succeed
in passing through the harshest danger;
but only in a bright and purely granted
achievement can we realize the wonder.
To work with Things in the indescribable
relationship is not too hard for us;
the pattern grows more intricate and subtle,
and being swept along is not enough.
Take your practiced powers and stretch them out
until they span the chasm between two
contradictions…For the god
wants to know himself in you.
Rainer Maria Rilke
A dear friend dropped by this week and gifted me with a bird feeder and bags of special treats to attract the them. It was no ordinary gesture because bird watching has transformed her grief into magic and community, and she wanted to share that with me. My place is a very unlikely haven for the winged creatures, but we hung it anyway. I’m part of a club now too, complete with advice about how to attract them and the repeated request, “Let us know when you get your first bird!”
It was when we sat together that night talking that a whisper of an awareness came over me and settled something inside my heart. It was this type of connection; this richness that had returned to my life. I am at a loss to explain it, but it feels like how we mark our transformations. With gifts; for each other. We who have survived loss and recovered from addiction become light bearers and bird feeders and it is somewhere on the other side of mere survival. Tender and young, the places in my heart are still fragile, but they always recognize beauty.
While she was with me, another friend called to ask if she could bring me dinner. She had spent the afternoon making Chile Rellenos from scratch and she wanted to share them. She is practicing self care; despite the heat, she wanted to nurture in this way.
Then, Christi asked if she could help repair the damage to my car that happened at the hands of a careless and pretty sick friend. She was grateful for the way I had helped her, and wanted to say thank you.
All in one day.
The more tender and difficult part of my passage has been allowing myself to receive; from others, but also from God. I’ve been a rather tough task master on myself, and I’ve often thought I had to do something to get God’s attention.
These gifts; these extensions of kindness, are the essence of a fruitful life to me. The gifts all represent a quality of each of them that I cherish. God, thank you for your patience with me.
And, a great song by Three Doors Down, Let Me Be Myself.