There in the lucky dark, none to observe me, darkness far and wide; no sign for me to mark, no other light, no guide except for my heart. The fire! The fire inside!
Postcards from the edge
In 2005, I sold or gave away just about everything I owned, including my house. I did this without thought, without planning. I did it to cast myself to the winds of life, to take my hands off the tiller of my own destiny and, instead of setting course for the limited destinations of my mind, let the currents of life be my raft and my guide.
In this way, I also surrendered stories in the stuff that I had gathered in my lifetime, the precious trinkets that reminded me of this or that event, situation or person; stories that changed, as stories do, with the telling, and in so doing stealthily built distorted attachments to the symbol itself. I was tired of stuff. And exhausted by stories.
Stories, friends, entrap the spider in her own web.
With my children long gone and half a lifetime yet to live, I made just one decision: I would say ‘yes’ to all that crossed my path.
That journey led me into situations and clusters of people I would not previously have ventured into contact with – and spat me out with the same values I’d held prior to setting sail on my little raft. The difference now is that I know the value of my values.
That journey freed me up to write the books I’d been longing to write for two decades and more. And in so doing delivered me freedom from a longing so great it was drilling my spirits into the bedrock of creative sterility.
That journey led me here, eight years later, to a destination of sorts; my little raft, still stable, its ropes frayed, its logs shining, smooth and weathered, nudging up against the golden sands of land, no longer ahoy.
It is time to rebuild my life.
At earlier junctions in my life, no matter how sharp the tack, I have always known where I was going, what I was doing – however unknown and unknowable the journey, my first step has always been inspired by the crystal clear twang in my bones that this is what I must do.
This time, however, there is only silence.
I stand on the shore blinking into the sharp white light of ‘home’, knowing I must leave the golden sands, and soon, and having no idea whether to turn left, go right, or move straight into the fog that meets the sand. This time, there is no light calling me home.
And so I prepare myself for the new journey, the rebuilding of a life.
This blog is the sharing of that journey. It is my way of not traveling alone, for I am tired of traveling alone. It is also my way of sharing the journey with those who long for something . . . other, but for reasons sound and otherwise are unwilling to step out.
When one is on a raft that strikes land, one’s food and water drunk, one’s money long spent, one’s worth disconnected from time and place – it is a fine challenge, this rebuilding of a life.
Salut! the journey
*** the poem is from the heart of a Christian mystic, the one they call John of the Cross.