“Listen to the mustn’ts, child.
Listen to the don’ts.
Listen to the shouldn’ts, the impossibles, the won’ts.
Listen to the never haves, then listen close to me…
Anything can happen, child. Anything can be.”—
“One day I wrote her name upon the strand,
But came the waves and washed it away;
Again I wrote it with a second hand,
But came the tide, and made my pains his prey.
“Vain man,” said she, “that dost in vain assay
A mortal thing so to immortalize!
For I myself shall like to this decay,
And eke my name be wiped out likewise.”
“Not so,” quod I, “let baser things devise
To die in dust, but you shall live by fame:
My verse your virtues rare shall eternize,
And in the heavens write your glorious name;
Where, when as death shall all the world subdue,
Our love shall live, and later life renew.”—Sonnet 75 - Edmund Spenser
“I don’t think there’s anything on this planet that more trumpets life than the sunflower. It’s called the sunflower, not because it looks like the sun, but because it follows the sun. During the course of the day, the head of the sunflower tracks the journey of the sun across the sky. Wherever light is no matter how weak, these flowers will find it. That’s such an admirable thing, not just in flowers, but in people - and such a beautiful lesson in life.”—
i don’t know the name of the blues that shadow our path one is sweet and light, a cool meringue another sharp, but still a third thick, pressing down upon the rest
cobalt they would say of the uppermost- a blue that hums deeply a harmony of firmament refusing clouds denying stars shining inside the cosmos a forever blue where life dies and is reborn an eternal blue that exists above the storm
a blue that doesn’t suffer discord that would smile if it had a mouth embrace if it was armed comfort if it grew heart
but instead it arcs a concert of blues hovering over the earth in an endless ocean of impossible quiet thick with blue beyond blue a blue that disappears when clutched in the fist a blue that is invisible and solid
Now, as you awaken, remember the swan’s last dance. Did you dance with young angels while you were dreaming? Did the butterfly light you up when it burned with the eternal light of the rose? Did the phoenix appear clearly before you and call you by your name? Did you see the morning dawn from the fingers of the one you love? Did you touch the dream with your hand or did you leave it to dream alone, aware suddenly of your own absence? Dreamers don’t abandon their dreams, they flare and continue the life they have in the dream…tell me how you lived your dream in a certain place and I’ll tell you who you are. And now, as you awaken, remember if you have wronged your dream. And if you have, then remember the last dance of the swan.
i carry your heart with me (i carry it in
my heart) i am never without it (anywhere
i go you go,my dear; and whatever is done
by only me is your doing,my darling)
no fate(for you are my fate,my sweet) i want
no world (for beautiful you are my world,my true)
and it’s you are whatever a moon has always meant
and whatever a sun will always sing is you
here is the deepest secret nobody knows
(here is the root of the root and the bud of the bud
and the sky of the sky of a tree called life;which grows
higher than the soul can hope or mind can hide)
and this is the wonder that’s keeping the stars apart
“All men dream: but not equally. Those who dream by night in the dusty recesses of their minds wake in the day to find that it was vanity: but the dreamers of the day are dangerous men, for they may act their dream with open eyes, to make it possible. This I did."
“when it’s over, i want to say: all my life
i was a bride married to amazement.
i was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.
when it is over, i don’t want to wonder
if i have made of my life something particular, and real.
i don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.
i don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.”—
One day you finally knew
what you had to do, and began,
though the voices around you
their bad advice—
though the whole house
began to tremble
and you felt the old tug
at your ankles.
“Mend my life!”
each voice cried.
But you didn’t stop.
You knew what you had to do,
though the wind pried
with its stiff fingers
at the very foundations,
though their melancholy
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
recognized 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—
determined to save
the only life you could save.”—
Before you know what kindness really is you must lose things, feel the future dissolve in a moment …like salt in a weakened broth. What you held in your hand, what you counted and carefully saved, all this must go so you know how desolate the landscape can be between the regions of kindness. How you ride and ride thinking the bus will never stop, the passengers eating maize and chicken will stare out the window forever.
Before you learn the tender gravity of kindness, you must travel where the Indian in a white poncho lies dead by the side of the road. You must see how this could be you, how he too was someone who journeyed through the night with plans and the simple breath the kept him alive.
Before you know kindness as the deepest thing inside, you must know sorrow as the other deepest thing. You must wake up with sorrow. You must speak to it till your voice catches the thread of all sorrows and you see the size of the cloth.
Then it is only kindness that makes sense anymore, only kindness that ties your shoes and sends you out into the day to mail letters and purchase bread, only kindness that raises its head from the crowd of the world to say it is I you have been looking for, and then goes with you everywhere like a shadow or a friend.