Monday, February 8, 2010

Start Close In

Start close in,
don't take the second step
or the third,
start with the first
close in,
the step you don't want to take.

Start with
the ground
you know,
the pale ground
beneath your feet,
your own
way of starting
the conversation.

Start with your own
give up on other
people's questions,
don't let them
smother something

To find
another's voice
your own voice,
wait until
that voice
becomes a
private ear
to another.

Start right now
take a small step
you can call your own
don't follow
someone else's
heroics, be humble
and focused,
start close in,
don't mistake
that other
for your own.

Start close in,
don't take the second step
or the third,
start with the first
close in,
the step you don't want to take.

~David Whyte

My fellow retreaters will remember this powerful poem from our first night in Manzanita. I remember sitting there with the room filled with candles and all of us huddled together, sitting closely, even though we had just met. The beautiful and oh so calm Liz ,sat down to welcome us and read this poem. I sat quietly with my eyes closed and let the words pour into me. They hit me hard. really hard. I'm not sure why. They just did. maybe it was because it's such a simple concept, but yet, for me seemed like such a difficult task. Take the first step, the one you don't want to take. I often find myself having the hardest time executing the tasks that appear to be the easiest. Am I the only one?

But wait. I was there. right? I DID take a step. I was sitting in a room, hours away from my home, surrounded with gals who were there for the same reason I was. It felt like home, even though I had never been there before, even though I didn't know a single soul there. I did take a step. I had taken a step towards what my heart was calling me to do and it felt good. oh. so. good.

It still feels hard, even though I have proven to myself that it really isn't. So, I must remind myself daily to start with the first step, the one I don't want to take and see what the heck happens from there.


patty said...

Serena, this brought tears to my eyes. What a great message and such tender memories! It has taken me a long time to learn this lesson - to trust my own questions and my own voice and to not worry about those of others. Believe me - you are way ahead of the game to learn it at your age!!

Jennifer said...

my dear Serena. All of this brought me right back to that first night. Sitting on the fireplace, my body feeling chilly and tired from a full day of traveling. My heart feeling like I was exactly where I needed to be.

Taking the first step is never easy. In fact it is the hardest thing in the world to do. Believe me, you are not alone in that. All of us are standing beside you ready to take that first step with you.

Your words are beautiful and so powerful. They paint such a beautiful picture in my mind. Thank you so much for sharing this.

chrissy said...

oh baby girl!
(i know, i stole that one from kolleen, but i love how she calls you that!)
thank you!
thank you for putting this out there.
i can.t tell you how much i NEEDED it.
i mean,
i REALLY needed it.
it brought back some much needed emotion and remembrance to my soul.
to my heart.
and you DID take that first step.
i see GIGANTIC artistry in you.
you have your own style.
you are on your way.
maybe you just need to stop for a second and take a look around you.
see where you are standing.
and you.ll notice that you HAVE been taking steps towards YOU!
towards who serena IS!
i see it girlfriend.


elizabeth said...

That poem hit me hard too.

So glad you took that first step! And that you continue to take them.

K8 said...

Thanks for pointing out the fact that we all took a step to be there...I hadn't thought of it that way before. :) makes me realize that I am moving forward - slowly, but surely.