If you ever lose heart and the earth seems as distant as stars fading into the noise of your busy mind, know this. That a tiny island exists in the blue hands of the ocean. That a tree grows upright into the salted clouds. That two eagles love each other enough to spend their lives greeting the morning sun together. That two eaglets stand in their nest, gazing at the heavens. Looking down to the forever ground. They eat and sleep and flap their wings. And one day in July, one by one, they will jump into the air. They will know the difference between existing and what is beyond. They will hold onto nothing. The hurricane will come, courage catching their pinions on fire, as they mount the wind, climbing ladders into realms of the invisible.

--T.L. Stokes

Monday, February 6, 2012

ten lights of letting go

Tell me why the spirits
play in the skin of the dead leaves,
clacking as they twirl themselves
into the baby sky.

The wind is an old man,
a voiceless bellow
speaking in the movement of all things.

The poem is the journey of the eye
speaking to the heart.
How hunger stirs the hand
to lift like leaves and write.

I have begun to believe
that nothing ever really dies.

We change our clothes. We break our wings.
We fall, we sleep.
The seasons lay down over us
while we listen to our mother

who's breathing
reminds us of everything.

She is the sunrise, the moon's face,
the language of stones, the scent of rain on the earth

She is the plain sparrow who loves me. The eagle.
The constant warmth of the bear in the den.

Put away your tears for the lost things.
If you can call them back to you,

or open your ten lights of letting go
to hold the next good thing.

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