Monday, June 8, 2009

An Iris Blessing

For the last few days I've been wrestling with a bit of wanderlust, so this morning I thought I'd stop dreaming of the images I could get if I were traveling and just go out in the dune grass and photograph some of the volunteer flowers that have sprung up.

This year the beach roses -- which have always been white, and smile at me from beyond the kitchen window -- have decided to add a red rose bush which is really quite lovely. And I caught sight of a single magenta lupine out by the golden chain tree.

But it was the white iris, dripping with dew, that called to me today: I love the lacy purity of it, the graceful arc of its dancing petals, the icy play of light around the edges, the dark allure of its depths... It's a very girly flower, sort of the ballerina I always longed to be, I think, but unhampered by the gracelessness and flat feet that plagued me as a child.

And as I say that, I realize that some part of me believes that this, this glorious lacy perfection, is how God perceives us; it's the purity of what we were before we were born, the grace of what we're called to be, the angel that guides us along the way, and the promise of joy that lies beneath the aging bodies and the crankiness and the stubborn efforts to control and all the other sort of tarnished bits of our lives.

And now I see that our Rumi poem for this morning's lesson from Spirituality and Practice is about transformation:

Come, arise from the depths of your heart!
You are alive and born of the living.
O lovely one, aren't you suffocated
by this narrow tomb?
You are the Joseph of the time, the bright sun:
arise from this prison and show your face!

[Rumi, Mathnawi II, 3132-3135]

Yes, the pure white iris in me is feeling a bit suffocated by the limitations of body and mind. I need to tap into it, open to it, give it a chance to come out and breathe. Time to go meditate again!


Jan said...

Thank you. I love irises, because they remind me of my mother, who used to grow them in her home in Bellingham.


"how God perceives us, etc."

Lovely words and the photo feels like a beautiful, handmade sugar flower on an exquisite wedding cake - I can almost taste it!