I’d like to offer you a profound and provocative poem, with which to start this portentous New Year … this one is shaping up to be a year of both spiritual and political drama far beyond the norm. The world is more volatile than ever now…as if there’s an energy explosion in progress, bubbling up from some deep, hidden place in our unconscious, demanding to be set free to change, change, change the way we see our world and the way we act in it, too. There’s a revolutionary air about it all, reminiscent of the ’60s…a sense of urgency to end injustice, to rescue the planet from the greedy pillagers, and to give more of humanity the even break it deserves. It feels like an ending and a beginning, of some cosmic proportion we can’t yet comprehend… a time when we must be up to the challenge of the whirlwind and use all our resources to embody, in Gandhi’s words, the change we wish to see in the world.
A Shift in Time Consciousness
Time itself seems to be accelerating, doesn’t it? Maybe it’s the electronic revolution that now makes demands of us 24/7… maybe it’s a culture that’s increasingly superficial, lauding breadth of knowledge rather than depth… maybe it’s the depressing economy that allows little opportunity for genuine leisure. In a world full of tweeted hashtags, what time is there left for contemplation? Whatever the cause, we’re all feeling an awareness of Time’s escalating heartbeat and it’s enough to give anybody over 50 a case of the twitchies. After all, Time flies all too swiftly as it is, and too often leaves diminishment in its wake.
All of which brings me to why I love the poem that follows here. It speaks in such an impassioned voice about what we gain in return for the all too rapid passage of the years… it speaks of the bravery that life exacts of us and the courage it takes to grow up and grow older with a spirit that doesn’t just endure, but prevails. What better time than New Years, when we take inventory of what the old year has wrought and what the New Year can envision, to be reminded that the true legacy of the years is the totality of who we have become and who we may yet choose to be.
In this newborn year that has yet to tell us any of its intentions, I wish you the fluidity and power of the river…the elegant strength of the tiger… the wild intensity of the fire… and most of all, I wish you the full realization of the uniqueness you bring to the party of life. I hope this is the year when your most treasured dream comes true.
The River… The Tiger… The Fire
Time is the substance from which I am made.
Time is a river that carries me along,
but I am the river;
It is a tiger that devours me,
but I am the tiger;
It is a fire that consumes me,
but I am the fire.”
© Cathy Cash Spellman/The Wild Harp & Co. Inc