Thresholds, by John O’Donohue

Not really a poem this week, although I heard this during a yoga class and it reads like a poem. In the middle of winter, which we are in, and it is gloomy and feels long, endless, the sentiments of this “blessing” and these words struck home. Small things remind us that this season will change, Spring will come and actually things are changing all around us. Almost imperceptibly but still changing. Pause and trust the process. I need this at the moment.

“Within the grip of winter, it is almost impossible to imagine the spring. The gray perished landscape is shorn of colour. Only bleakness meets the eye; everything seems severe and edged. Winter is the oldest season; it has some quality of the absolute. Yet beneath the surface of winter, the miracle of spring is already in preparation; the cold is relenting; seeds are wakening up. Colours are beginning to imagine how they will return. Then, imperceptibly, somewhere one bud opens and the symphony of renewal is no longer reversible. From the black heart of winter a miraculous, breathing plenitude of colour emerges.”

“The beauty of nature insists on taking its time. Everything is prepared. Nothing is rushed. The rhythm of emergence is a gradual slow beat always inching its way forward; change remains faithful to itself until the new unfolds in the full confidence of true arrival. Because nothing is abrupt, the beginning of spring nearly always catches us unawares. It is there before we see it; and then we can look nowhere without seeing it.”

“Change arrives in nature when time has ripened. There are not jagged transitions or crude discontinuations. This accounts for the sureness with which one season succeeds another. It is as though they were moving forward in a rhythm set from within a continuum. “

From To Bless the Space Between Us, pp. 47-48.

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