Wednesday, November 10, 2010

This poem, to me, captures the essence of a good therapeutic connection.  Whether it's 
between you and a counsellor or you and a striking grove of trees.  
First I get a sense of rest, calm and even safety before it mentions the work.  And then
it reminds me that we don't struggle in a vacuum cut off and cast out of life, but in the midst
of a vibrant world innocently unaware of our despair.  To me this is as beautiful as it is
harsh because the world's role is not to comfort us, but to remind us of how to be.
Finally, this poem reminds of the most powerful healing tools we are given - imagination, 
the ability to be inspired and create, to love and connect with life and those around us
simply by employing our attention.
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


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