Tell me, what is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life? – Mary Oliver
Recently I began the ritual of morning pages. Although Julia Cameron recommends 120 days, that is too much of a commitment for me. Just 30 is enough of a challenge. I’ve done this before…and for those who know me discipline is not my strongest trait. So I work at gently returning to a routine that supports living a more creative life. Relearning the lessons of being ready, open and attentive to what is. No judgement.
Ultimately any spiritual practice – meditation, writing, walking, painting, yoga, is really just about finding a way back to the present moment.
Yesterday’s writing moments were born outside. Me, the birds, the rabbits (who have eaten all of my zinnias….) and my Cody. My backyard is a wild place. Fast summer growth combined with too much heat, too soon, my yard looks spent.
It’s not even July and I have completely lost control of the gardens.
Like I ever had it, right?
So many greens – silvery rue, emerging chartreuse hydrangea, saturated Shasta daisy leaves. The cleone have volunteered whirly heads of white and a familiar pungent smell in the most interesting of places.
Three bird families built their nests here this spring. A swallowtail caterpillar became a butterfly and then died just a few days later. Baby rabbits emerged from their den with voracious appetites.The frogs stopped their mating calls, no longer demanding we listen to their night time shenanigans. A family of wasps reside in the bird feeder. A mallard couple visits on occasion to swim in my neighbor’s pond.
Surveying my suburban domain I am curious about the connection between discipline, wild places and creativity. This tiny plot of land has more living and dying going on than I can even begin to know. If I’m quiet and listen closely enough, can I hear its messages? Discipline, continuing to return to the moment, cultivates trust. And trust can entice even the most tender wild places to tell their stories.
no matter the practice
stay with it
you sit with your wild places
i’ll sit with mine
the messy, flushed, exhausted ones
don’t fear what they have to tell us
just ease ourselves into their rhythm
will be amply