Marcus Aurelius is one of those persons I would love to meet one day. I know, I know…he’s dead. That’s not a barrier…or so I believe. :)
This can happen anywhere, anytime…if we are not afraid to realize that we are mostly the same. No matter our country of origin, it is really the same things that we fear, the same things that comfort us, the same things that make us sad.
A little care and compassion goes a long way, don’t you think?
Gate A-4 By Naomi Shihab Nye:
Wandering around the Albuquerque Airport Terminal, after learning my flight had been delayed four hours, I heard an announcement: “If anyone in the vicinity of Gate A-4 understands any Arabic, please come to the gate immediately.” Well— one pauses these days. Gate A-4 was my own gate. I went there.
An older woman in full traditional Palestinian embroidered dress, just like my grandma wore, was crumpled to the floor, wailing. “Help,” said the flight agent. “Talk to her . What is her problem? We told her the flight was going to be late and she did this.”
I stooped to put my arm around the woman and spoke haltingly. “Shu-dow-a, shu-bid-uck, habibti? Stani schway, min fadlick, shu-bit-se-wee?” The minute she heard any words she knew, however poorly used, she stopped crying. She thought the flight had been cancelled entirely. She needed to be…
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Yes! Labeling yourself is limiting. You’ve put yourself in a box of preconceived notions, ideas, and mostly other people’s ideas of who you are or should be.
Like a cat
plays with a mouse
before finally devouring it…
is how I want you
to play with me.
Then, take your fill
with my inevitable release,
one last breath,
before one last bite.
Last night I watched my cat play with a mouse for about 12-15 minutes, then eat it in about 20 seconds. I’m pretty sure he enjoyed his meal immensely. It made me think that cats really know how to make the most of a good thing. He waited a looooong time for a short meal. But I bet by the time he ate it…it was fabulous.
Then I thought, what if people did that when it comes to any activity? What if we enjoyed the whole time leading up to an event, or a finale? In particular, I thought how fitting this is when it comes to love-making. Isn’t the foreplay and the lead-up to the culmination of sexual desire really the most delicious part? Shouldn’t it be about play, and anticipation, and teasing? The enjoyment before the enjoyment? I think this is how we should strive to live and be (in all things, really).
Cats have refined the art it seems. They do not do a single thing that does not give them some type of pleasure. Anyone up for a game of cat and mouse? ;)
I found a lovely poem by Edith Södergran, and a video with music to accompany the longing in the words.
“The Land which is not” Poem by Edith Södergran
I long for the land that is not,
for everything that is,
I am weary of wanting.
The moon speaks to me in silvern runes
about the land that is not.
The land where all our wishes
become wondrously fulfilled,
The land where all our fetters fall,
the land where we cool our wounded forehead
in the dew of the moon.
My life was a burning illusion,
But one thing I have found
and one thing I have really won
The road to the land that is not.
In the land that is not
my beloved walks with a glittering crown.
Who is my beloved?
The night is dark and the stars quiver in reply.
Who is my beloved?
What is his name?
The heavens arch higher and higher
and a human child is drowned in the endless fogs
and knows no reply.
But a human child is nothing but certainty,
and it stretches its arms higher than all heavens.
And there comes a reply:
I am the one you love
and will always love you.
Music in video: Manuel de Falla, “Nana”