Wednesday, February 3, 2010

This Time

Dear All, I intended to post this on my own blog, but after I clicked the Publish Post button, I realised I was posting using my Writers Rising profile. Looks like this poem was meant to be here. So here it is, and it's on my blog too. :-)

This time I will not
sit back and wait
For the leaves to turn yellow
and another winter to dawn
So I can relegate
my dream to a new spring.

Nor cast away the swirls of
myriad feelings
That wash over my soul
and speak to me
In ways they never have
before.

This time I will not
shy away
in fear and allow
walls
to be built
around me
To protect me from
the storm that has not
and may never come.

And should the storm come
this time
I will not choose to
be fearful
and run for cover to the closest
shelter
But look the storm in the face
and continue moving forward
Until the winds relent
and the rivers part
To show me my path.

This time I will not rest
until I have tasted
The freedom
of lasting happiness.

Feeling mortal


FEELING MORTAL

     Tired--- so very tired I feel the wind chill as it courses through the holes in my rusted armor. Once resilient, the tarnished exterior succumbs to the wear of a seemingly never-ending onslaught.

     I find that once I embrace that youth is not eternal, mortality become more imminent. Each grain of sand that slips through the orifice of the hourglass represents another lost opportunity. Often disregarded as ceaseless gifts, these grains represent the time fleeting. The orifice widens. The sands, they fall as the transition mocks us with the truth of an eventual eternal slumber. We must play before bedtime.

      No longer feeling like the sting of a wasted day is not felt. The days, they slip like pages torn from a book, blowing--- lost to the wind, their words to be forgotten. I scramble to gather my words, my legacy, trying to hold onto the best chapters. Maybe someone will want to read someday. Will anyone care?

     How did this personal erosion occur unnoticed? The silent carcinogens of doubt, of apathy--- they ate their way through. It spreads the disease that eventually releases the tethered cords that secure me to the stronghold of my spiritual wharf. The wind it blows. The wind it is cold.

     So tired--- I realize that my body is no longer able to withstand the torrent. Bruised and blistered, I may have won the fight, but realize that upon healing, the scars restrict the agility once needed to maneuver the obstacles. I bend, it hurts. I twist, the body responds with pain.

     Will the realization that the path I now tread is far off course from the destination I once sought. The goal is no longer to arrive where I once aimed, but to simply find sustenance along the way, to not emotionally starve as I seek refuge from the expectations I once had. It doesn’t taunt, but it does haunt. Will I ever settle again into feeling I am almost home?

     I find it challenging to separate this score I keep with myself as to what I ventured to achieve, the successes that I once harvested; long since consumed, now left with the remnants of missed expectations. Although playing for both teams, I find myself rarely celebrating victory.

     The hypocrisy sneers as it sinks its meat hooks into me. It bears its enthusiasm as I am made aware that I detach so easily and divert from my nature. I derail. I slip into a lack of awareness that I am not able to counsel myself with the same love and compassion I would show others, including my enemies. Does this make me more contemptuous than my nemesis’? How can inflict the deepest cuts yet allow myself no sutures?

     So tired. Unable to fly I am held captive by guilt and responsibility. Living in the shadow, the sun no longer reflects off my now rusted armor. The once impervious metal now only adds weight. Responsibility stands in the way of dreams. Dreams being the air that sustains me and dispels the pain, yet with responsibilities choking off its nourishing supply. Blue I choke, gasping I whither and release my clutch to hope.

     Holding myself in contempt, I realize I have opened Pandora’s Box and have lost the lid. The sirens call to lure me further from the shore, beyond where the lights upon the shore illuminate the refuge for return. Time being the link to possibility; the rope grows shorter with every passing day. Soon I will be set adrift at the mercy of the current.

     Mortality it looms over the fallen. Only can I rise up and patch the holes that expose me to further barbs. Perhaps realizing I am mortal, I can hold time as a most precious resource. I am not immune to the disease of doubt--- contagious and draining. Should I choose to rise like the phoenix from the ashes, I must add faith to my arsenal. I mustn’t stand as an army of one, my current condition needs support. Standing over my defects like fallen comrades, I must check them like bodies on the battlefield to look for survivors. Once nursed they can stand beside me guarding the flanks.

     So tired, yet once rested may I rise to a new dawn. Hope it can peek through the cracks like a sliver of sun’s rays to warm whatever it touches and to light the way to the door. The fool continues the same path with his progress eternally impeded. Choosing right, choosing left is choosing the life restoring detour. Just go! Wait no longer for the rusted armor to weigh down the soul into simply sitting before the wall that impedes it, cursing its presence.

     Perhaps shedding the weight of what once protected is the ideal course. Vulnerable yes, but light, allowing the body and soul to heal and run freely in the direction of the sun. No more shall the burden of past baggage weigh me down. Rest and restore. Sleep to soothe the tiring ache, arise to the promise of new shores. Seek solace in the realization that one pivot in a new direction leads to the potential for a new journey with a new outcome. Eternity shifted in a simple pivot. The subtlest of turns affects destiny.

     Mortal I am. The opponent of mortality is life. Sleep will I now to awaken with new hope. Life is not measured in time spent. It is the collective story between our entrance and departure. Sometimes more of the story needs to be written for the rest to make sense.


365 Lessons-Lesson 33: Pay Attention, The Signs are Right in Front of You

My friend, Rosedanie Cadet, hadn't been back to her country, Haiti, in 36 years. In December, she sat at my dining room table and told me that she was going back. She had planned to return to Japan, where she once lived, but didn't receive her visa in time. Since she had the time, she decided she would like to return to her country to help her people. This was before the earthquake.

She left in December with a non-profit organization called Answered Prayers. She was selected to act as the translator of this program which would travel to an orphanage in Haiti in order to bring supplies to the children and help with building projects. She asked me if I knew of anyone who had any baby items. I don't have children, so I immediately contacted my sister and best friend who both provided Rosedanie with a few boxes of items.

Before Rosedanie left for Haiti, a friend mentioned that she should have a psychic reading to find out why she felt a strong need to return. The psychic told her that her grandmother, who died before Rosedanie ever had a chance to meet her, was waiting for her return. Even though they had never met, Rosedanie felt her grandmother was with her and that she had work to do in Haiti.

A week or so after Rosedanie returned from Haiti, after helping out with the orphanage, the earthquake hit. Rosedanie made it back just in time. Many of her family members were missing and it took some time to find them, but all of them are safe.

While most would be frightened to return to a country that was just destroyed by an earthquake, Rosdanie took it as a sign that she was meant to return. She had a strong sense that her grandmother was there helping her in spirit. She contacted Partner's in Health and Mercy Corps to let them know about a project she had been planning for some time. They let her know that she could make a donation, but they wouldn't accept her project.

Rosedanie has been a cook and garderner on Orcas Island, WA for several years. Rosedanie believes that if people in rural areas learn proper farming techniques and have a proper facility to store food, they will learn to be self sufficient and not need to rely on the heavy aid of other countries. If jobs are created in the rural areas through farming, people will be more apt to stay there and there won't be as much of a need to go to the city to find work.

She decided to form her own organization called The Noramise Project, named after her grandmother. She feels this is her calling. Helping the people of Haiti during this earthquake is a wonderful thing. But helping the people to become self sufficient for life is something that will last for many generations to come. Here's a video of Rosedanie talking about her project:

video

Answered Prayers, the organization she traveled with in December when she went to help out in the orphanage, has decided to link her project to their site. You can make specific donations to the Noramise Project by going to answeredprayers2.org. Make sure to specify that you would like your donation to go to that project. You can also visit noramise.org to find out more specifics on this project.

Rosedanie and I have been good friends for some time now. When I see what she has done in such a short amount of time with her project, I am utterly amazed. After the earthquake, she has participated in two benefit dinners for Haiti. Some of those proceeds will go to her project. She has also managed to mobilize volunteers in Haiti to help with farming. She has gotten a church in the rural city of Limbe, where she is from, to donate land for her food processing plant. Two articles have been published on Orcas Island, WA talking about her project. Momentum for what she is doing is coming from all directions. People are saying, "What can I do?"

I asked her if she finds this amazing. She said, "I am just a conduit. I am like a hub. My main role is to be the connecting person. I am receiving messages of what I need to do and what actions I need to take and I'm taking them." This sense of selfless service in my friend is so amazing. She has put all her needs and cares aside and is doing this for the people of her country.

More than that, all of this seems to be coming through my friend. Not even she knows where it all will lead, she is just taking things as they come.

Rosedanie stopped by my house again today and told me of this project. I knew I had to write a post here. I felt it was a sign to me that she was sitting in front of me at my dining room table once again. If she had stayed a little longer in Haiti, I might have lost my friend.

Pay attention, the signs are right in front of you. If this project speaks to you, I urge you to get involved by either donating or going to Haiti to volunteer your time. My dear friend has reminded me that sharing whatever gifts we have with others on this planet is the reason why we are here.