I am blessed to have a friend who I think is one of the wisest women I know. Each of us is a writer. We touch base via email each Monday morning as a way to say, "Good morning, is your butt in your chair?" or "This is what I am watching out my window right now" or "Here is something I love." It's an easy and straightforward way we use to inspire, nudge or hug one another into a new week of writing.
Several Monday mornings ago, she sent me a poem from a poetry site she enjoys. The site is called A Year of Being Here - daily mindfulness poetry by wordsmiths of the here and now. It's a poem-a-day site that believes that reading selected poetry promotes mindfulness. The site suggests that one can't really read a poem without getting into the here and now.
"That's what mindfulness poetry does: it calls us home to where we are, and helps us abide there. It helps us pay attention. It helps us inhabit our lives instead of just going through the motions."
I decided to subscribe.
The poem that arrived today .... on this Martin Luther King holiday morning.... certainly called me home to my here and now.
John Daniel in his verse titled A Poem Among Friends has left me wondering if I am, in my Here and Now, spending generously the time I have been given... enacting my responsibilities as thoroughly as I am enjoying my pleasures....seeking a vision that serves all beings....honoring the mystery I cannot see.
I believe Dr. Martin Luther King did that in his Here and Now. Now it's our turn.
A Poem Among Friends
by John Daniel
Among other wonders of our lives, we are alive
with one another, we walk here
in the light of this unlikely world
that isn't ours for long.
May we spend generously
the time we are given.
May we enact our responsibilities
as thoroughly as we enjoy
our pleasures. May we see with clarity,
may we seek a vision
that serves all beings, may we honor
the mystery surpassing our sight,
and may we hold in our hands
the gift of good work
and bear it forth whole, as we
were borne forth by a power we praise
to this one Earth, this homeland of all we love.
In observance of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., Day: "A Prayer Among Friends" by John Daniel, from Of Earth: Poems (Lost Horse Press, 2012). Text as presented on The Writer's Almanac (10/19/2012).