I’ve done it. I think. I’ve finally figured out Fridays. The clue was in the exploration of the name last week. Venus or Frigg day, day of appreciating art and beauty. So today I am going to indulge in another one of my loves: poetry.
This morning on the way to work I picked up a copy of the Big Issue and read this:
Do not make more of life than there is meant to be.
For there is much more after death
for us to do and see,
Your immortal soul within this space
needs a body of clay.
In trains your senses to be in touch with time and passing day.
Look not too much to history
for there lay your mistakes.
Look you not into tomorrow lest you
panic and hit the brakes.
Time today is all that matters for it is when you learn.
That infinite spirit is all of you
wherever you twist or turn.
Walk your path in spirit and faith
with loving in your heart.
What you give out to your fellow man
they will to you impart.
(Ralph Church – Big Issue Vendor Plymouth)
This wasn’t written by a middle class, middle income hippy-dippy sort, it was written by someone without a home or an income and probably a number of harrowing life experiences. And how hopeful is that poem? Someone who life may have repeatedly knocked down and who got up and still had hope.
It reminds me of another poem by my favourite poet, William Blake, called the Clod and the Pebble:
“Love seeketh not itself to please,
Nor for itself hath any care,
But for another gives its ease,
And builds a Heaven in Hell’s despair.”
So sung a little Clod of Clay
Trodden with the cattle’s feet,
But a Pebble of the brook
Warbled out these metres meet:
“Love seeketh only self to please,
To bind another to its delight,
Joys in another’s loss of ease,
And builds a Hell in Heaven’s despite.”
The clod, trodden on constantly, is the glass half-full here not the pebble. Blake was known to be spiritual if not religious and there is more than a hint of Victorian Christian values here but I still love the message of hope.
Hope. That’s the key.
In these early days when things are still taking shape hope is essential. Essential for dealing with temptation of conditioning and fears of not being well enough, having enough money, enough interest from others. Hope keeps me going.
So thank you Ralph and William for your beautifully spun words.
Received and understood.