Monthly Archives: October 2018

The Green Tumbling Down

note: This poem was written some time ago, back in 2007. Partly due to a conversation about experiencing challenges in my life, the time of letting go and dying that autumn is naturally, as well as ALL the feeling that is so incredibly alive and stirred up at these times with everything occurring at this time, I looked for this poem here and realized I had not ever published it on Contemplative Fire. I wrote it years before I ever dreamed of starting a blog to share my poetry. I share it with you today. Deep blessings to you.

To remake oneself while the house
is crumbling all around you,
That is the finest dream there is:
to take to heart all that is true and real
by the measure which no one owns but you.

I had to climb in from the back side door,
someone else’s entrance, to save what I’d lost.
Even then the pieces no longer made sense,
others’ notions of decorum and amorous play
remained and needed casting out, a wild gesture,
which nearly cost my last ration of aliveness.

How can we take someone else’s word? A word is spoken,
a word uttered, is uniquely its own, cannot be held,
cannot be possessed: only given free rein within.
And yet I seemed to have made a house of words,
too often borrowed and put into service unawares;
no wonder this crumbling, going to pieces.

How to build, when instead those former structures
long to crack and spread under their weights,
the weight, the waiting in time? Let them. Let them.

So, I found myself riding the falling staircase
as it clamored to the ground.
I found myself, capacity clear and centered,
like riding a wave and knowing my own,
landing unscathed, vitrified, transformed.

I found myself abiding in a radiance akin to the sun,
a light burgeoning a peace like none of another’s making.
A peace that could only come with the calming
of the many internal storms, a peace harboring itself,
casting its wonder as lines to the shore,
the shores of partiality for this very heart.

This undoing in the making, the making in the undoing,
is rough business and not for the faint of heart.
Although it is sometimes arrived at out of exhaustion,
a half-heartedness from trying to fulfill another’s destiny,
from trying to fulfill a destiny other than one’s own.

Landing, finally, in my own body, my own corporeal soul,
that word that is the concrete refuge, the heartened wood.
I give the green arising of this vitality free rein, free reign.

 

15 January 2007
Fairfax, California
Janice Sandeen