This month, we decided we’d have poetic conversations with Rilke.
So we took this piece:
You, darkness, of whom I am born—
I love you more than the flame
that limits the world
to the circle it illumines
and excludes all the rest.
But the dark embraces everything
shapes and shadows, creatures and me,
people, nations—just as they are.
It lets me imagine
a great presence stirring beside me
I believe in the night.
—Rainer Maria Rilke, The Book of Hours, translated by Anita Barrows and Joanna Macy
And then we talked back to it. Kind of fun, huh?
Here’s my try:
You, lover of shadows –
You mistake my totality
for constance, you romanticize
midnight’s communal meeting
of all the world’s hearts.
But that’s because you’ve always
made it till morning, because behind
your darkness there’s a waxing moon
that lies in wait
I believe in light.
Go read the others now!
What a place!
Maybe we’ll cross paths
with what is unexpected
with our own true selves
I spent the day at a vibrant school full of eager students.
I left feeling lucky, happy — and exhausted.
Tomorrow’s more of the same.
But here’s what was waiting for me afterwards, just a few miles down the road!
After a long day
there’s something about water.
I become the sand.
Today is my birthday, folks, and it is a BIGGIE. Like, the biggest one so far.
And I could grieve or freak out but honestly, how lucky am I to be alive and well?
So I intend to celebrate for weeks and weeks.
But today? Today I hopped on an airplane and flew to Florida for a few days of school visits.
It felt funny at first — leaving my family and my little stack of presents behind — but tonight, poring over my Powerpoints for tomorrow, I’m realizing it’s really an affirmation that I’m doing what I’m meant to be doing. I may be 50 but I’m happy, and standing tall in my boots. Lucky me.
Grass isn’t greener
but so many places feel
just like home to me
When you have a senior, the days are full of grand finales and rituals and good-byes.
It’s thrilling and crushing at the same time.
Last night was the swim banquet, where the seniors were gifted purple towels and signed kickboards. Tomorrow is sure to be another milestone. Life goes on and on and on.
Your old team’s with you
swimming laps in a new pool.
You’re never alone.