Wednesday, April 07, 2010

in the right place at the right time

Yesterday the class I was teaching in San Antonio ended just a few minutes driver arrived just a few minutes early...I showed up at the airport just a few minutes early...and because all passengers were present a few minutes early, we boarded the plane a few minutes early. All of this led to my being able to leave San Antonio just as the airport was unexpectedly being closed for the arrival of the Vice President. If I had not been early along with my few fellow passengers, the plane would have waited for regular departure time and we would have been delayed an hour or two beyond our scheduled time; I would then have missed my connection in Dallas and would have had to spend the night. Everything works out the way it needs to and I am always in the right place at the right time. 

Of course, if I had been delayed and if I had been stuck in Dallas for the night, that would then have been the right place and the right time for me and everything still would have been okay. It sounds like a riddle, but it's an amazing way of life.

Ever since I took into my life the mantra "I am always in the right place at the right time...meeting the right people...being offered the best opportunities," I have found it to be true. I don't mean I embraced it lightly, but I took it deeply into my soul. In the beginning I spoke it aloud many times a day beginning with waking and ending with laying me down to sleep (not just saying it but deeply feeling it). Soon I found myself being reminded of the words whenever I perceived something as being out of place (like this...I took the wrong exit from a highway and in my dismay I suddenly remembered my mantra and said aloud "I am always in the right place at the right time..." My incorrect exit turned out to be better for my destination than my planned one). I do not mean that I say this or practice it so I will get what I want (or get what I think I want), I practice it to always embrace what is present as being exactly what is needed. In the course of this practice my life increasingly shifts into everything I could want it to be.

photography by permission

Thursday, April 01, 2010

unless you...

Unless you

visit the dark places, you'll never
feel the sea pull you in and under,
swallowing words before they form.
Until you visit places within you
cloistered and constant, you will travel
in a tourist daze, wrought with too much
of what endures, depletes.

If you never turn from light, close
your eyes, feel the life inside, you'll leave
the church, the beach, your self,
knowing nothing more.

Unless you are mute, you will not
know your urgent heart, how it beats
between the thin skin of yes and no.

First-place winner
Spirit First Poetry Contest 2010

photography by permission

a free for all

A free for all

There was a performance artist, Bill Harding,
Who used to carry about a briefcase filled with sod.
He'd surprise everyone by opening it,
Setting it down, removing his shoes, and stepping into his
Own private park.
Meditation's like that.

My parents used to fly private airplanes.
It always amazed me that down here it could be
Grey and miserable and full of car horns and traffic lights
And up there, up past the clouds,
Petty problems disappeared and everything was always peaceful.
Meditation's like that.

You've maybe heard about creating a special place
To hold in your mind, at the dentist's, in traffic, under stress.
I used to always use the linens department at Sears or Penney's.
Among soft folded towels in coral and turquoise,
among display beds piled high with throw pillows and matching comforters,
Who could be worried?
Meditation's like that.

Your own private park you can slip off to whenever you need
A quiet moment to reconnect to the Earth and all that turns with it
and all it turns in.
Your own blue sky above the rain clouds you can fly off to whenever you need
To rise above the trivial rain showers of the day to day,
to become the sky itself.
Your own perfect image of calm and order,
not necessitating terrycloth or combed cotton or 100% down
a realization that everything is in its perfect place and time,
including you.

It's all yours. It's all mine.
Any time.
Meditation's like that.

by Wendy Winn
Second-place winner
Spirit First Poetry Contest 2010