Sunday, February 17, 2013

The Inner Work of Growing Old

Two years ago almost exactly--February 12, 2011--I posted an essay on the inner work of growing older. I want to share it with you again today. It's valuable for us to reflect upon and engage in these tasks. In them is the real harvest of growing older. The link to my earlier essay can be found at the end of this blog entry.

I will focus on the developmental tasks of aging in my OLLI class tomorrow. I'm looking forward to it. Sharing with others in a circle or class setting is such a rich experience. I've got two groups this week--one at OLLI and the other at Skylark Assisted Living.

I am also readying to gather a 5-session class in March-April titled "The Adventure of Spirited Aging." It will meet weekly on Thursdays from 4-6pm,  in Ashland, from March 14-April 11th. Please email me if you are interested in knowing more about it, or registering.

This week I enjoyed being part of One Billion Rising at the Bellview Grange. It was a wonderful gathering, full of great dance, music and poetry. I shared my poem Forces of Nature, which expresses the elemental and sacred qualities of the Feminine. You can read the poem below. And right after the poem you will find the link to my post from 2 years ago. I hope you take a moment to read about these important inner tasks and reflect on how you are engaging in this important growth work.


Forces of Nature

Women like forces of Nature
   blue as the sky, their voices
in the streams and rivers,
their scent of the Earth after rain.

Faces from the wind
at the spin of the beginningless
   who have been born and died many times.

Living in secret,
deep in the Mountain Home
rustling their leaves of gold and green
their scarlet hair blown out
      as a music to the autumn wind.

Just before the first snow.
In silence, in whiteness,
in knowing they remain
far ways from here
deep in great forests
       where the secret banner flies
      of the hidden world.

In great trees whose magic
is to elude the destroyer,
women like forces of Nature are hidden.

In fragrant dewy rains of spring
     the tender grass is born again.
Wildflowers appear
     the deer return
the bear awakes

It’s time and

you have what it takes
your face from before the time of mothers and fathers
your heart bright as the sun at midday
your mind of the original nature.

If you trust the way back over
you can go there
it’s not back over there
     it’s not back
                                        it’s not over there.

If you have wings to fly you can fly
You can walk there
      You can walk there
You can walk.

Women like forces of Nature
moving Earth
      moving and disappearing.

   streaming clouds and prayers of peace
women dancing in the midst of space,
their faces brilliant as a hundred autumn moons
  their diadems a thousand stars.
Jewel planets
   so deep time cannot touch them.
women of the wisdom eye
                     to die in their embrace is to awaken.

Rainbows stream from every pore
laughing their thunderous laughter
                             they walk through the measureless sky
with the cool hands of the healers
                          with the beauty of their diamond bodies
with their joyous armor
shattering every disease.

Living the great peace
     they live among us
they live among us.
They are in our blood.

Here is the link to my earlier post.

SAGE'S PLAY: Growing Old: The Inner Work: Fifteen years ago I was 55 and I was drawn to begin some of the inner work of aging. I didn't think of myself as old then. In fact the ide...

No comments:

Post a Comment