Tuesday, April 19, 2011
I called it creative tension, and it set me on edge just to look at it. So when I came to it this morning, I wasn't at all sure it had a future. But I kept thinking about the poem for yesterday in Coleman Barks' book, A Year With Rumi:
"There is a small green island
where one white cow lives alone, a meadow of an island.
The cow grazes till nightfall full and fat,
but during the night she panics and grows thin as a single hair.
What shall I eat tomorrow? There is nothing left.
By dawn the grass has grown up again, waist-high.
The cow starts eating and by dark
the meadow is clipped short.
She is full of strength and energy, but she panics
in the dark as before and grows abnormally thin overnight.
The cow does this over and over,
and this is all she does.
She never thinks, This meadow has never failed
to grow back. Why should I be afraid every night
that it won't. The cow is the bodily soul.
The island field is this world where that that grows
lean with fear and fat with blessing, lean and fat.
White cow, don't make yourself miserable
with what's to come, or not to come."
And then I read Parker Palmer's Let Your Life Speak this morning, and he says, "Even in writing this essay, I have had to struggle with the scarcity assumption. It is easy to stare at the blank page and despair of ever having another idea, another image, another illustration. It is easy to look back at what one has written and say, 'That's not very good, but I'd better keep it, because nothing better will come along.' It is difficult to trust that the pool of possibilities is bottomless, that one can keep diving in and finding more."
I decided to trust that the possibilities were bottomless. And so I kept working with it, bringing more and more light into it, softening the edges, until I arrived at something I could love. And I do love it -- all the more for the work that went into it, and the struggle, and the promise: that in all we do there is this marvelous potential for wonder -- we just need to stay open to possibility, to lighten, and to soften; to blur the boundaries between us and not-us and allow the light to flow through...
Posted by Diane Walker at 8:22 AM