Friday, November 23, 2012
This laboring through what is still undone,
as though, legs bound, we hobbled along the way,
is like the awkward walking of the swan.
And dying-to let go, no longer feel
the solid ground we stand on every day-
is like anxious letting himself fall
into waters, which receive him gently
and which, as though with reverence and joy,
draw back past him in streams on either side;
while, infinitely silent and aware,
in his full majesty and ever more
indifferent, he condescends to glide.
Rainer Maria Rilke
This year as I celebrate my birthday I am grateful to have discovered the ability to let go. Although I so often feel I am hobbling along, I also know the majesty of letting go into the stream of life.
Rilke, with a magnificent gift of words, describes the swan in a way I can so easily picture myself. I look forward to this next year with joy and reverence, with awe and wonder, with contentment and compassion.
Saturday, November 17, 2012
Some of us think holding on makes us strong; but sometimes it is letting go.
~ Herman Hesse
I'm struggling to let go of things in my basement, in my closets, in my garage. I don't know why it is such a difficult task. Some of these have been packed in boxes for years and are smashed beyond all usefulness. Still, I hesitate...
Last week I filled the trunk of my Prius with clothes I no longer use or need. Now a second load of unwanted items waits patiently in the trunk to be dropped off at the Good Will. Before taking them, I thought I might be able to find a few more things. So I'm off to the basement. It's a very brave thing to do. Basements can be so overwhelming.
One of the things I love about the process of de-cluttering is discovering memories attached to the things you find. I found a collage of photos this morning taken about twenty-five years ago. It made me smile to see my 5-year old daughter with her Indian headdress hiding behind a bush in our front yard or wrapped in a wispy shawl of mine, smiling mischievously. So, now instead of letting go completely, I want to take this to my daughter. She may want it, who knows...
For now I'm moving on to another closet. The basement holds far too many memories for me to sort through today. Besides, the sun is shining so brightly, it's just a shame to cloister myself in the basement. All of those boxes will be waiting for another day, more cloudy or rainy or dreary than today.