I just got the following well-spoken lines from Jean Houston's email list. She credits the first paragraph (in quotes) to a good friend of her's -- the poet Bonnie Myotai Treace. The words of both these poets (who are also spiritual leaders) speak heartily for and to me, inspire my prayers and remind me of our unbroken oneness with all who suffer this night...
Compassion During the Storm
“I grieve the end of orange leaves. The soon beating death of trees so many, cracked and broken, pulled from earth, struck and whipt by wind: trees that will not be mentioned with love, just blamed for downed lines, troubled lives. My people, they will be breaking, falling, dying. I sing their lives. Stronger than silk, milk, midnight. Deeper than shadows, intimations, rootedness itself. The taffeta sound of their falling is my grief endlessly landing falling again then landing again endlessly...”
I watch the storm roaring through and think on trees lost, homes flooded, people preparing for the worst that beats all expectation. All, sentient, footed, finned, winged and rooted, all falling or fleeing the ravages of Nature’s returning wildness. And I think on the pity and terror of we who live in “safe and sound” places, seeing it all on screens—the Great Powers unhinged and the power outages that follow obediently in their wake.
The pastors intone the sacred words, “Let us pray…” So yes, let us pray, but also let us harken to the hearts that beat in dread, the valiant efforts of those who help and those who wander in both lostness and gathering found-ness. Let us send them etheric roads, routes, lines of leaving what must be left, discovering refuge, finding the community of all of us in this together.
May we regain both strength and compassion to serve each other, the resilience to restore and recreate after it is over, and, most deeply, the return of wonder, of gratitude, and a commitment to remember our ultimate truth—that we are after all-the One in the Many and the Many in the One.
( We might know this same oneness from within our 'safer' night. We may hold tight in spirit some shaking mother and call forth a presence as guide and godly light. We may listen for the storm we barely hear and send into its midst a prayer for all who feel alone -- keeping watch within our strange, storm-felt sleep -- sending solace like a hand for another hand to grasp. Being prayer with each breath until the storm is past. CLN )