The litter under the tree
Where the owl eats - shrapnel
Of rat bones, gull debris-
Sinks in the wet leaves...
...The long fall back to the center-
The seepage, the flowing,
The equity: sooner or later
In the shimmering leaves
The rat will learn to fly, the owl
Will be devoured.
I do other daily readings besides Mary Oliver. I read poetry from Latin America, daily nonviolent communication meditations, and Rumi Sufi poetry. Some days there seems to be a confluence of meaning that awakens me more thoroughly in these dark hours.
Today's poetry was an Amazonian oral tradition in the book Revelation: Latin American Wisdom for Everyday by Danielle and Olivier Follmi that said:
Your body is the place of memory,
A privileged place, the junction of Matter,
Energy, Spirit, and Conscience.
The entire universe is in your body,
your body is a Temple.
The message from Peaceful Living, Daily Meditations for Living with Love, Healing, and Compassion by Mary Mackenzie:
In Toltec cultures, this is called a Puja. It is a sacred act of honoring your body. Every morning while you're lathering yourself in the shower, caress every part of your body and say aloud all the reasons you appreciate it. I embrace radical self acceptance.
And also from A Year with Rumi: Daily Readings by Coleman Barks: The Worm's Waking:
This is how a human being can change.
There is a worm
Addicted to eating grape leaves.
Suddenly, he wakes up,
call it grace, whatever, something
wakes him, and he is no longer a worm.
He is the entire vineyard,
and the orchard too, the fruit, the trunks,
a growing wisdom and joy
that does not need to devour.
In this weaving of wisdom, I sense a rising joy. There is no self. There is no death. We are here to love this body, for it is the whole universe that one day will learn to fly. In this knowing, there is an unbearable responsibility to live devouring no more than what life needs as it flows through us, from stars into earth, and rising once again.
How do you treat your body? Do you "feel" that you are part of everything and if so, how does this influence your daily actions?