A Valentine for the weary

I’m on a plane heading home after teaching in Seattle. It was a full-on, fun weekend and in lieu of writing a new blog, I’m sharing a poem by one of my favorite poets, John O’Donohue.

This poem, which I’ve shared before, captures so well the journey of coming home to oneself – a Valentine’s Day gift indeed.

Sit back, take a slow, deep breath, and let John’s words flow through you like a warm, summer breeze. And if you haven’t read any of his books, please do. I especially love the one called, Beauty.

A Blessing for One Who is Exhausted

From To Bless the Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings

When the rhythm of the heart becomes hectic,

Time takes on the strain until it breaks;

Then all the unattended stress falls in

On the mind like an endless, increasing weight,

The light in the mind becomes dim.

Things you could take in your stride before

Now become laborsome events of will.

Weariness invades your spirit.

Gravity begins falling inside you,

Dragging down every bone.

The tide you never valued has gone out.

And you are marooned on unsure ground.

Something within you has closed down;

And you cannot push yourself back to life.

You have been forced to enter empty time.

The desire that drove you has relinquished.

There is nothing else to do now but rest

And patiently learn to receive the self

You have forsaken for the race of days.

At first your thinking will darken

And sadness take over like listless weather.

The flow of unwept tears will frighten you.

You have traveled too fast over false ground;

Now your soul has come to take you back.

Take refuge in your senses, open up

To all the small miracles you rushed through.

Become inclined to watch the way of rain

When it falls slow and free.

Imitate the habit of twilight,

Taking time to open the well of color

That fostered the brightness of day.

Draw alongside the silence of stone

Until its calmness can claim you.

Be excessively gentle with yourself.

Stay clear of those vexed in spirit.

Learn to linger around someone of ease

Who feels they have all the time in the world.

Gradually, you will return to yourself,

Having learned a new respect for your heart

And the joy that dwells far within slow time.

This Week's Video

Here’s a short TED talk filled with poetry that leads to self-love.  You can watch it here.  Thanks, Gae!

Comments

debs go lightly 15th February 2016 5:30 pm

Thank you Cheryl, this is absolutely beautiful. I love John O'Donohue and keep a copy of Anam Cara near me.
Happy Valentines Day to you!
Much love and golden light, Debs.

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Cheryl Richardson

Cheryl Richardson is the author of The New York Times bestselling books, Take Time for Your Life, Life Makeovers, Stand Up for Your Life, The Unmistakable Touch of Grace and her new book The Art of Extreme Self Care. She was the first president of the International Coach Federation and holds one of their first Master Certified Coach credentials.

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