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From Waist Height and Wondering 16

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting–
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.

I was given this poem in meditation class. We were on our way to “Living Well with Pain and Illness Through Mindfulness Meditation” Course when we were in a car accident. A bailiff in a pick up truck decided braking was optional. He slammed right into our tiny car. The doctors said as I was already so sick it hadn’t affected my life too much. It’s not like it stopped me playing tennis or something! Just caused me more pain, and hey, what’s a little more dears?

This poem helped. Poetry almost always does. Death, taxes and everything in between.

May it bring you some ease and some hope. January can be national emotional-self-flagellation month. Well not here.

You do not have to be good. heart silver