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Sweet, simple gifts
Tea Talk #3
I recently read this beautiful poem called Adrift (by Mark Nepo).
I just wanna share a couple lines from it.
“Everything is beautiful and I am so sad.
This is how the heart makes a duet of wonder and grief.”
Later in the poem, the author writes:
“In the very center under it all what we have that no one can take away, and all that we've lost face each other.
It is there that I am adrift, feeling punctured by a holiness that exists inside everything.
I am so sad and everything is beautiful.”
I'm learning that the simplest gifts in life carry us through our grief.
Grief is like carrying a heavy box.
You lean down, straining at the waist to pick it up, struggling with it, feeling overbalanced, but a simple reorientation, an adjustment of how you pick it up and how you carry it, allows you to lift it with a little less struggle and to carry it longer.
The beauty in life, the wonder, the simple moments spent with loved ones expand my capacity to carry the weight of my sorrow, because we must balance the pain with the joy.
Every feeling has its opposite. And I am continually reminded of how I am allowed to feel both things.
I can hold the bitter and the sweet together.
And I continue to return to poetry.
It is poetry's capacity to encompass the fullness and the duality of our experiences.
To relish the simple gifts, the simple pleasures, the ordinary magic.
We do have to be present. We have to become awake to the life that we have.
And I feel that poetry is an invitation to that, awakening to our own truth, our own reality, our own experience.
We are able to use poetry, to use art to put our experience under the microscope.
And there we discover beauty in the desperate sorrow, and there is sweetness in the bitter tea that life inevitably serves all of us at some point.
The simple, little sweet things in life, like a beautiful poem, allow us to orient ourselves to find an anchor point, so that when everything awful would sweep us off our feet and carry us away, we are able to find a rope to pull us back, or to stand just a little bit stronger so we can make it through the waves of grief and sorrow and struggle.
Today, I want to invite you to share with me some of the simple gifts that are present in your life.
Right in this moment, in this moment for myself, I am finding pleasure in poetry.
I am finding a simple gift of a cup of tea shared in the morning with my children.
I am finding joy in the sunshine when we sit outside on the grass and have lunch together.
And it is these small and tiny, little simple things that continue to give me hope and strength to adapt as as I meet life's challenges.
I would love to hear about the sweet and simple gifts you have found in your own life.