I wrote my first poem when I was 19. It was my first experience with feeling and experiencing a perspective and perception deeply and then searching for words which best described it.
It fascinated me. It was as if there was a garden full of flowers, and I had to walk through it finding the flower or combination of flowers, that best expressed my feelings. I had to translate that collection into words which would unfold a picture. Within that picture, I could welcome others into the garden, and begin to describe the ethereal presence of a thought, a feeling, imagination, perception, or phenomenon.
In my world, it all makes perfect sense. This process. It is something that can be understood with one’s mind, but it does require a kind of participation to not only enter into the mind, but also the heart. It asks for another’s willingness to go inside of one’s self, to see the picture reflected and enlivened.
For our business, I have been the systems person. I write manuals for employees, newsletter, charts, etc. I can think clearly and make chronological time lists and advertisements, etc.
But I think in pictures, so I am used to the task of translating. More relevant, I find words in the scrabble tiles, perceptions in a suitcase as it opens, or feel like I am pulling a rabbit out of a hat, which cannot be seen until it is.
Words are so upright and full of their own dignity and vastness. Writing for me is like walking in the clouds that can be seen as pictures from below. It is like walking or running on the surface of water understanding that it is full of life and structure that has dimensions and chemistry that allows one to experience reflection and transparency.
For years, I spoke in three-words-at-a-time language. I couldn’t find one word to describe the architecture of my perceptions. I couldn’t find one word to describe the environments I felt surrounded by or entered into. It’s a place that is to be honoured and tread gently in. It is a place where people tend to want to create concrete images and belief systems, of any sort, to give ground under one’s feet; when in reality, the ground appears, when one sits quietly and allows the landscapes to arise.
For me, herein, lies the beauty. We are all part of this molecular, stellar-ization, alchemized, ever-changing world. Depending on which point of view one takes, or which line of perspective or perception one has, the life we share is vast, infinite and ever-changingly alive.
To loosen up the reins of control,
and choose to sit amidst this beauty, is an honour.
To release and place one’s finger on the pulse of life,
observing every single living reality and form, is to feel devotion.
To be willing to recognize what a gift we are given each day,
the water we drink,
the air we breathe,
everyone and every living thing,
we share life with,
In the fields and meadows of the stars
wherein music moves,
and the deep blue oceans
wherein the whales sing,
we have a possibility to find words to express this wonder.
To the birds soaring and fish flowing
through the air and the water’s substances,
we have the ability to soar and flow with them,
finding worlds and words to describe magnificence.
To sit, holding open a space,
within the flower gardens of life, within our hearts,
is to participate in birthing
and imagining a new world phenomenology.
No matter what angle or direction
I am walking or running
or turning or diving or entering into,
my heart opens over and over again
with a deeply, devoted, wonder-filled,
magnificent song of awe-inspiring sounds,
that unite with the alchemy of the living,
in order to find words that hold open a window
into the human experience,
the world of the living experience,
carrying on flowing right on into the vastness of essence,
that illuminates the universe,
our hearts, our minds,
realms upon realms of substance
and all the infinite realms of possibilities,
soaring and swimming into all the light we cannot see,
living within all the peace
that flows through the veins of the cosmological choreography,
imagining a new phenomenal world.
This is it.
This is the moment in time,
to shift our perspective on living
This is the tapestry.
This is the blank canvas.
This is the fertile soil and the perennial gardens.
The water we drink, we swim in,
or walk upon as a clear surface
illuminating a world of life below us,
above us, and within us.
I’ve always wondered
how it is that anyone, anywhere,
could ever imagine that,
with these things called money and power,
they would own, or control, or take from anyone of us
a beautiful world, a living garden, and a multi-dimensional experience
we are all free to perceive and live,
in love and devotion.
In closing, I see this world pandemic, as an opportunity. We’ve all been given an opportunity to go home and live together. We’ve been given an opportunity to notice nature, each other, and genuinely care about the well-being of others. Most of all, we’ve been taken to the edge, with a question:
What is Life and how do we want to live it?
How do we care for it? Save the living?
How do we take care of it together?
How do we tend to it, nurture it, love it, perceive it,
breathe it in and out each day, drink in its essence?
Most of all how do we continue to hold open the space
in the world, on the Earth, within ourselves,
to invite the wellsprings of life
to overflow within and around all of us?
How do we create a new life?
How do we make sure the perception and value:
of home and inward reflections,
nature and her vibrancy,
the Earth’s gifts-clean water, clean air,
protecting all living creatures,
conscious considerations and caring connectedness,
and upholding the awareness of the family of humanity as a whole,
stays on the top of the list of priorities
when this opportunity ends?
How can we carry forward
the educated intensity and wise integrity
we’ve seen from many in this moment?
How can we bring dignity to the ordinary?
Who will translate this phenomenon in the flower gardens of our souls?
Who will begin to paint a new landscape on a newly acquired blank canvas?
Who will have the courage to continue creating
and living the real life we’ve perceived?
Maybe the first step is writing down: Questions After CoVid19.
Maybe the second step is for everyone, on every level,
to sit intentionally in the world flower gardens,
holding open a space
where words can paint a picture
and a new language can be found and spoken
for a new world culture of peace and friendship
with so much love
and sun light.
written by Jill RoseMary LaBelle Sophie
photographs by Jillian