Wandering through life and appreciating good conversations along the way, this journey increasingly feels like an arc rather than a straight line.
And here the words of T S Eliot at the end of Little Gidding, from Four Quartets, become more and more real:
We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
Through the unknown, remembered gate
When the last of earth left to discover
Is that which was the beginning;
Far from taking a backwards step, this is finding our most radical, grounded space of Being. Here. Now.
Because the universe does not need us to do something, but essentially to be something, as Lucille Clifton reminds us, returning to the place where we all started.
Mary Oliver’s poem The Journey captures some of this too. Here is an excerpt:
It was already late
enough, and a wild night,
and the road full of fallen
branches and stones.
But little by little,
as you left their voices behind,
the stars began to burn
through the sheets of clouds,
and there was a new voice
which you slowly
recognised as your own,
that kept you company
as you strode deeper and deeper
into the world,
determined to do
the only thing you could do –
Being in a thin space
While we are the only ones who can make our particular journey, we are not alone.
If we have eyes to see, there are thin places all around us where we encounter the love that holds us together.
My friend Tracy Ingham wrote this beautiful poem after spending time in the valley earlier in the week. Read the backstory on her blog: Finally shall come the poet…
Sat motionless in the middle of the cold night,
Gazing at a billion galaxies
brightly shining above me
I am enveloped in the silence
and the warmth of wonder.
Here are the thin places.
Pausing at the break of the bright new day,
Noticing the vastness of heaven
reflected in the depths
I welcome this mysterious border
at the boundary of my fragile life.
For here in the thin places
Not a desperate reaching out or crossing over
from one realm to the next,
But a convergence of all that is
and all that shall be.
And moulding together the fragments of my divided self
you make me whole.
Here in this thin place.
Wherever you are and whatever you are facing, may you know the love that makes you whole as you find your place to be in this wonderful world.