Rereading this poem…
O that Abstract Garden
O that abstract garden of being
Tells me to be brave, and clear,
In the fire of living,
And in the journey through the year.
So I will grow me like an oak tree
And make life’s honey like a bee.
Each day I will walk an interesting mile
And with the sun I’ll share a smile.
I will play again like a child,
And celebrate what’s wild.
I will swim in every sea or river,
And reflect the light of the sublime giver.
I will be at ease with opposition,
And will cultivate intuition.
I will walk the surprising streets,
And dance to life’s unexpected beats.
I will notice all the phases of the moon
And try not to act too late or too soon.
I will write something new every day
And look at paintings in an alternative way.
I’ll not dream the same way twice;
But I’ll not be shy to repeat what’s nice.
I’ll have the courage, when needed, to change;
And I won’t forget that life is strange.
And so I’ll learn to love the simple things
As well as the complexity that life brings.
Good or bad I’ll learn to treat the same
And I’ll not forget that it’s all a mysterious game.
I’ll not let that general fear of death run my life
And I’ll make magic even out of strife.
Into the higher realms I will enter
And make my corner the centre.
O that abstract garden, make me clear,
Make me brave, without fear.
I intend to love this rich new year
(Copyright, Ben Okri, December 2010.)
My entry for this weeks photo challenge: Shadow
Images taken at the Dominque Gonzalez-Foerster light installation at Tate Modern, London.
Having gone to the wrong car park I had missed the start of the walk by about 10-15 minutes. My options were to state walking, with the possibility of catching up with the group at some point or return home after a 30 minute drive with the possibilty of stopping somewhere on the way for a coffee and cake. Given that I hadn’t actually done any walking yet I didn’t feel that I had undertaken a level of activity that warranted cofee and cake. I would recieve no congratulatory message from my google fit app or the satisfaction that I had added another activity to this months tally on runkeeper if I didn’t do some of the walk I had intended to do. This and the warm autumn sun decided my actions for the next couple of hours. What I like about a walk in the country is the feeling that your thoughts have space to expand compared to when sitting at a desk. Being outside in nature seems to give them a different type of energy; being alone can add that extra level of contemplation.
This weeks challenge is Solitude, and we have been invited to show what being alone means to us. The quote given “Solitude is a place of purification” by Martin Buber inspired me to look for more quotes. Here are four quotes I like;
” A warrior balances solitude and dependence” Paulo Coelho
“Without great solitude, no serious work is possible” Picasso
“I live in that solitude which is painful in youth, but delicious in the years of maturity” Albert Einstein
“Solitude, whether endured or embraced, is a necessary gatewaty to orginal thought” Jane Hirshfield