When the break of every new day
seems to reveal a new crisis, tragedy, or horror
in some corner of our precious earth-world
what are we to do,
when we don’t know what to do?
What are we to do,
when each idea that surfaces finds a stillbirth
crushed by a mind that insists
we cannot make enough of a difference?
I find it helpful to admit, out loud,
that I do not know what to do.
”I do not know what to do and
I do not know how or where to begin.”
Spoken honestly, these words help me open to and acknowledge
my feelings of helplessness and begin the process
of raising my smallness skyward.
In the recognition of something greater than ‘me’
it becomes safe to open the gates of heartbreak and grief
letting the tender tears of a child in pain
fall into the soft lap of Love’s embrace.
Here, miraculously, we find we have already
done something useful.
To open to the pain of the world,
to let it be felt and
to let the heart and body shake with sadness
is a statement of courage;
an act that says, “I am willing to keep my eyes and heart open.”
Held in love, we can pour out our tears
as much and as often as necessary, knowing
that we do not have to figure this out alone.
Emptied of grief and having admitted
we do not know the way
a space emerges for true listening.
Here, in the deepest quiet, the intelligence of life itself
can move in us, gently
drawing us in the direction we can most usefully assist.
When the quiet whispers come
and when the heart expands with happiness and relief at the truth of them
our job is to tend them as best we can
to trust that though we do not see how what we are called to could help
something so much greater is at work.
And so today at least, with a whisper in the palm of my hand,
I go on watching the bullfinches and the robins and the blackbirds
and let myself write what I see and what I feel
and trust that somehow, though I do not know how,
this is enough.
What is your whisper?
Love and courage,