Take Heart

There are many ways up the mountain

and to the valley floor.

What matters

 is that we take Heart.

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How vast the heart
that it can hold
both death
and life…
cry for what has gone
sing for what has come

Does not the tide
throb in her
coming and going
or the dying of a day
bring birth to another?

Does not the exhalation
allow for new breath
or the sapless dying
of the tree
new shoots?

How vast this love
that holds
both sadness
and joy…
how sweet the peace
she brings

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The filling is found
in the emptying
the form
in the space
and that which sings
the heart
in the silence

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To weep at the feet
of a scented dawn
as though the heart would
scatter into night
and a million stars…
to hold yet not contain
this beauty
this love
this pain
yet flow as the river
meets the sea

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Epiphany with my Heart

These last few days I’ve been fighting with my mind, wrestling questions with contradictory answers and making up scary stories. Many of these stories take place in the future and start with: “What if?”; “Should I?” and “Oh my God!” The rest have been rolling around in the past decoratively wrapped in sentiment and sadness. No wonder I’ve given myself a headache.
I’m aware there’s a theme – would prefer it had happy happy party overtones. This though is more a dirge, a sombre celebration of abandonment and rejection – here to dance for me again!
The gift comes in the form of another person who has come into my life, warming my heart. With the warming has come the scary stories. Imaginary ghosts, goblins and witchy-woos cackling their warnings of doom and gloom. When I shifted my focus to the past, there was another clutch of long faced crocodiles singing sad lullabys of grief.
I know I didn’t have to listen to their cacophony of lies, but somehow they’d jammed a foot in the door, invited in their mates and had the party in full swing. So was my head – turned up in full boom stereo.
It was then I remembered my heart.  Had forgotten, I’d forgotten.
As I imagined opening my heart to love, a picture came, with the words: “a river flowing through my heart.”  With the words came tears and release.
Immediately peace filled my chest. It was as though the  in filling of love simply washed the fear away. So surprising really, yet so powerfully gentle. I found myself for much of the day, with my hand over my heart, not wanting to lose this peace.
I agree with Gary Zukav (The Seat of the Soul), that ultimately, there are only two states of “being” – love or fear. It reminds me of the biblical passage: “Perfect love casts out all fear”.
There was a moment later that day, when fear-filled sadness returned. The energy quickly slipped from my heart to my head as a “story” began to develop and the emotion of it filled my head and chest, washing away my heart-centred peace. All I could do was allow it to   wash through me. Other times I’ve fought this, by judging it and telling myself I’d “failed”. It reminds me again how well children teach us, if we stop to see and listen.  In their young and natural state they simply flow with their emotions, allowing full expression and moving to the next emotion and moment so easily. There are no barriers in their rivers.
I was surprised when twenty minutes later the fear had vanished (along with the headache) and I was singing.
How expansive the heart – this gentle place where love resides. I don’t want to leave – yet know I’m sure to forget, yet again. How sweet though, the home coming!

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