Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Autumn - Rainer Maria Rilke

The leaves are falling, falling as if from far up,
as if orchards were dying high in space.
Each leaf falls as if it were motioning “no.”

And tonight the heavy earth is falling
away from all other stars in the loneliness.

We’re all falling. This hand here is falling.
And look at the other one. It’s in them all.

And yet there is Someone, whose hands,
infinitely calm, holding up all this falling.

Translated by Robert Bly

West Wind #2 - Mary Oliver

You are young. So you know everything. You leap
into the boat and begin rowing. But listen to me.

Without fanfare, without embarrassment, without

any doubt, I talk directly to your soul. Listen to me.

Lift the oars from the water, let your arms rest, and

your heart, and heart’s little intelligence, and listen to

me. There is life without love. It is not worth a bent

penny, or a scuffed shoe. It is not worth the body of a

dead dog nine days unburied. When you hear, a mile

away and still out of sight, the churn of the water

as it begins to swirl and roil, fretting around the

sharp rocks – when you hear that unmistakable

pounding – when you feel the mist on your mouth

and sense ahead the embattlement, the long falls

plunging and steaming – then row, row for your life

toward it.

Biding Time

One of my beloved friends wrote today about biding her time. Seems to have struck a nerve.

After all my waiting for months to find steady employment, I have job I'm truly loving -- challenging, engaging, interesting, detailed, big-picture oriented... it really is quite something.

But after getting tremendous support last month in a Herculean effort to submit a plan for review and approval, the next one in line is now due, needing just as much time and attention, but this time, I seem to be all on my own. Which is why I'm up at 11 pm worrying when typically I'm asleep by 9.

I feel needy and helpless and exasperated, none of which I like very much. But it's where I am, and Idon't see it changing in the next two days, when everything's due.

I'm trying to yoga breathe and focus on the good things or think about other things or do laundry or put together the shopping list.

But tick tock. And what I really want to do is put on a sweater and shoes and go to work and edit the plan that ticks like a time bomb at my desk.