Sunday, December 16, 2012

Splitting Open the Whole World

My Christmas Cactus in the Kitchen Window--Blooming Now.
Photo from 2011.  Light in winter.


The Telling That Changes Everything XXVII. September 2, 2012

You see, the ecstasy the true self experiences is outside time, and it’s contagious.
–The Telling That Changes Everything II. 

How does one human being help hold back
the woes of desolation and dismay that
descend, despite our best efforts?  By belief
that the More in our human nature’s still 
there, will always be there if we stay 
attuned to that deeper, wiser chord we
have the ears to hear, the vision to 
recognize and obey; that leads us into our 
own imagined promised land either 
before or after we die.  
–The Telling That Changes Everything XVII.

When Susan came to interview me
and pressed me to know where my 
drive came from, I told her it started
early.  By age twenty-seven I knew my
destiny was to do something important.
Vague enough then and sometimes
forgotten–yet, like a hard pebble of
truth inside me, I couldn’t entirely forget.
It kept me on this path I later called
my leyline: doing what I must do,
while I have life and limb.  At age
fifty-four I wanted to fulfill Muriel
Ruykheyser’s dictum: “If one woman
told the whole truth about her life,
the world would split open.”  I worked 
for truth and justice here and abroad, 
wanted people who are different
to overcome their fears and hostilities.
I saw how my words became catalysts
and changed things, though I was often
castigated: “trouble-maker;” hated,
feared, avoided.  I turned to my books:
I’d send their arrows of truth zinging
out into the wider world.  I, a catalyst,
have been giving birth to books, also
catalysts, which carry their passionately
winged words into other minds.  
Some of my arrows may come right
back and wound me.  That’s inevitable
when you once begin the work of
splitting open the whole world.

No comments:

Post a Comment