Finding hope in the cycles of life

Two small crocus flowers in the debris against a wall

Each year, I experience a thrill at the emergence of the crocus. Their appearance heralds the approach of spring and new life. Yet these first buds in the valley are tiny, and I wouldn’t have noticed them if Steve had not discovered them first. Aren’t they beautifully formed, exquisite in detail and such a gorgeous … Read more

The miracle of letting go

the-miracle-of-letting-go

DAWNING Letting go isn’t like flicking a switch, it’s not instantaneous or discrete. Instead, it’s sticky and wretched. Washed with tears that leave a crust of salty residue, and echoing fears of yielding too much,  with nothing left, but shadows. Yet dawn light seeps through cracks, warming hands to open, revealing possibilities already there waiting, … Read more

Time to pause among the trees

time-to-pause-among-the-trees

This week has been a little surreal. Unplanned endings and unprepared new beginnings colliding in a time that felt disorientated. Or discombobulated, as I heard someone say. I’ve also missed my usual routine of a pause among the trees during the morning alpaca round. This is because Steve and I have been synchronising our arrival … Read more

Now is the time to pause

now-is-the-time-to-pause

We need to pause when we cross a threshold of endings and beginnings. Even if momentarily. Not because of indecision or reticence but because this is a significant step. Endings are important. We are not in charge of their timescale, yet we must honour their process. And likewise, birth rarely comes to order. Yet the … Read more

The songs of endings

the-songs-of-endings

We know what beginnings sound like. The excited whispers, the first cry, the jubilation of finally arriving. At the start. But what about endings? Why do we often avoid the marking of closure, the celebration of what has been and the rhythm of mourning? Yet even the most magnificent piece of music, or journey or … Read more

Endings and beginnings

endings-and-beginnings

A cherry drops,plump and redfrom the cherry tree. Is this a beginningor an ending? Coming back to theplace where we startedand knowing it forthe first time. Is this an endingor a beginning? Wherever we appear in the circle of life is always an ending and a beginning.   How we see it depends on where … Read more

Fruitful harvest of the year

fruitful-harvest-of-the-year

We bless this year for all we have learned,For all we loved and lostAnd for the quiet way it brought usNearer to our invisible destination. + John O’Donohue Time has taken us by the hand and led us along many strange paths. Ways we had not expected to walk. People we never thought we’d meet. … Read more

Being open to the surprise of remembering

being-open-to-the-surprise-of-remembering

We had just finished dismantling the large round bale of sweet-smelling hay, moving it armful by armful through the narrow passage into the hay store. The alpacas were thrilled to be clearing up after us, yet it was still grey Welsh dismal damp. And then – the sun shone – for the first time in … Read more

Receiving the gift of endings

receiving-the-gift-of-endings

Endings don’t always have to be the ambush we fear – the thing taken from us without our consent. So as we approach the end of this year, how might we prepare ourselves for the possibilities of the next? And open our senses with gratitude to the natural passing of time? Perhaps by walking with … Read more