Aurora Borealis 2002 – photo by Gottfried Mitteregger on New Year’s Eve in Yellowknife
Ten years ago my friend sent me the following stanza by poet Marge Piercy from her poem, The Spring Offensive of the Snail. She also added this note, “This is a great poem to start off the New Year. There is also a ceremony among some First Nations people, which involves throwing water over their backs seven times. In doing so, they wash away any habits or thoughts no longer beneficial for growth. People forgive those who have harmed them and ask forgiveness of those they have harmed. Now they are ready to start the year anew.”
“…But remember to bury
all old quarrels
behind the garage for compost.
Forgive who insulted you.
Forgive yourself for being wrong.
You will do it again
for nothing living
resembles a straight line,
certainly not this journey
to and fro, zigzagging
you there and me here
making our own road onward
as the snail does…” excerpt from Marge Piercy’s poem
I wish you all a 2019 filled with many meaningful moments of joy, purpose, courage, generosity, health, awareness, adventures, laughter and lots of time with the ones you love. Let’s stay open to the element of surprise. We never know what might happen around the corner.
Like this photo that was taken by Gottfried Mitteregger in Yellowknife, 2002, at New Year’s. He was there with Dr. Itami and a group of cancer patients from Japan. They had come to see the Aurora Borealis and experience a traditional healing ceremony performed by a Shaman. Everyone was surprised by the extraordinary display of nature and the significance and joy of the nurturing ceremony they had experienced. Consequently, healing can happen, even when cure doesn’t.
It has been my experience that there is always help during times of distress and great difficulty. Sometimes we don’t even need to ask for help. It arrives unbidden. Sometimes we need to seek it out. Knock on doors. Write letters. Make calls.
And, even with all of our pro activeness, it doesn’t imply we solve the problem. Yet, we often find comfort, strength and new information. It is important to seek out what you need. Sometimes the locked door opens, even a crack, and allows some light to get in. Sometimes it doesn’t and, yet, our efforts and the efforts of others keep us from being alone.
2019 awaits us with 365 brand new pages for our book of life. Let’s all live them fully, in the best way we know how. “Zigzagging (along) you there, me here…as the snail does.”
With love and gratitude and a thousand good wishes for you all. Trudy
Note 1: In July of this brand New Year, some of the Japanese who went to Yellowknife in 2002 will arrive in Calgary to hike in the Rockies for four days and visit Wellspring Calgary where they will give a presentation and participate in Wellspring activities. There will be 13 participants, including Yoshie, the cousin of Dr. Itami. All are in their 60’s and 70’s; several have had cancer or been a caregiver. Even more, their purpose is to remind themselves and others that you can have cancer or other serious illness, be over 60 and still live fully. I am very happy that they chose Calgary for this year’s adventure. Last year it was Mt Blanc.
Note 2: Some of you will read this today as I will be flying home, tomorrow, so will post this early.
Note 3: Here you see a bit of one of the teepee’s, in the bottom left corner.