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Abundant Silence

Updated: Jun 27, 2021

I find trust in my silence

I’m as surprised as anyone I found it there

Long before this practice I thought silence

Meant alone and forgotten

But with this newfound trust

I’m realizing a world is inside

In my silence

And I’m grateful.

Dreams of memories past

Visit me again

Where I’m in difficult situations

Laden with helplessness.

I always find myself in dreams

Like this when I’m on the cusp

Of change, feeling bigness before me

In an emptiness of waiting

The cusp holds the edge of anxiety

And the thin edge of Now

Where my comfort lies in

The present at the tip of my toes.

My trust holds the simple truth

I am here now and that’s what I know.

To venture past the trust puts me

In a wanting state.

I found this Mary Oliver poem about letting go in nature. Comfort of a memory can ease me on the cusp of change.

Once, in summer, In the blueberries, I fell asleep, and woke When a deer stumbled against me.

I guess She was so busy with her own happiness She had grown careless And was just wandering along

Listening To the wind as she leaned down To lip up the sweetness. So, there we were

With nothing between us But a few leaves, and the wind's Glossy voice Shouting instructions.

The deer Backed away finally And flung up her white tail And went floating off toward the trees -

But the moment before she did that Was so wide and so deep It has lasted to this day; I have only to think of her -

The flower of her amazement And the stalled breath of her curiosity, And even the damp touch of her solicitude Before she took flight-

To be absent again from this world And alive, again, in another, For thirty years sleepy and amazed,

Rising out of the rough weeds Listening and looking. Beautiful girl, Where are you?

Participants’ Reflections:

  • I was so moved by this Mary Oliver poem, but I didn’t get the connection about what I wrote this morning and the poem until I went into silence and I heard so clearly, she stared into the eyes of trust. All I kept seeing was doe eyes looking at me and me looking at her eyes, and that meeting was trust.

  • That poem took my breath away – it was magical. We are truly blessed being part of this intentional community you have built. Yesterday I had a horrifying experience at work. Due to a language barrier, there was a misunderstanding over a product that was sold. The gentleman came back later in the day and basically went ballistic. I was terrified. The situation resolved but totally shook me up. People are cracking under pressure from the pandemic. I’m so grateful for this solace everyday with our intentional community.

  • My meditation took me to a wind tunnel. I have been feeling so overwhelmed about what’s happening with the schools not knowing if my children are going back. We are work at home parents and we don’t know what’s going on. The wind tunnel was this crazy conflict of moving in one direction, my hair blowing as I was pushed forward and then the wind changed and I was fighting it. I gave in to it knowing it’s out of my control. The wind subsided and I was able to walk through it. Very moving, very visceral.

  • I think that you and Mary Oliver have a lot in common. The readings that you do many mornings find their way back to me during the day. Mary Oliver talked about the deer leaving and she expressed sadness but at the end saying “where are you pretty girl?” The image is so powerful. The beauty of this group, sometimes during the day I can see one of your faces and hear something that was said that comes back and softens the moment for me. I appreciate everyone and their offerings.

  • The word control reminds me I feel like control is on one side and trust is on the other. I would rather control which is a lifelong issue. My mantra is “Trust the process.” I have to say it pretty often.

  • It was such a beautiful poem imagining the deer eyes looking at me. I have had a very unhappy and difficult life. It really boils down to what carries me. What carries me is my deep love for my children and my love of animals and nature. I break it down into moments I hang onto with my dear cats or wild animals and talking to flowers. One time I planted a Peach Gerbera. It grew and had two blossoms. Every morning I would check the flowers and say hello. One morning I found the petals on the Gerbera were completely chewed off except for one or two petals. I wasn’t angry. I was delighted. I wish I had seen who was up on their hind legs chomping away thinking that’s the most delicious treat in the world. These little moments I remember forever.

  • The beauty of this intentional community is I can come as I am to experience meditation time. No need to change out of my pajamas, brush my hair or teeth. It’s all good.

  • I found that poem wonderful. What it set off in me was wondering was she asking where did the deer go or where did she go? My mother died when I was 19 and I wonder where the beautiful girl I was then has gone? I have pieces of her but not all of her back. It just stopped me.

  • That’s the beauty of these readings is that they speak to each of us differently and yet beautifully.

  • Thank you for this moving time of sharing reflections and memories. This time is so rich. This is living in the heart. It is vulnerable and it does cause emotions to come up and that’s okay. I believe every time we feel our heart, it opens us up more. Just because we pull ourselves together doesn’t mean we close up. We open up more. It’s a process.

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