The calling


It has been a really difficult month but there have been some amazing highlights.  One of them was reading this poem at Mother Tongue. It has served as something of an affirmation or a mantra, these words remind me of who I want to be and who I already am. I offer them to you because the more I share these words, the more I strengthen my commitment to this vision and if I’m really lucky maybe you will find solace in them too.

I was called in the middle of dancing
In the pause between the first wave and the second
Between the inbreath and the outbreath

The voice of the earth pulled at my heart
I call you she said
Yes I answered, without hesitation
Take me, use me, let me serve You
An inward breath, a pause, a moment of clarity, of ecstasy

And then I crumbled
I am not enough! I am a poor instrument! I will Fuck it up! I’m lazy! I’m a terrible procrastinator!
I became small, shut down,
A woman reached out to offer comfort and I snarled, I almost bit her hand.

I was called but I don’t know what it means
These moments of insight seem so profound
But afterward the current of life pulls me onward like nothing has changed
Before enlightenment, get up, go to work, make dinner, do the bedtime routine.
After enlightenment, get up, go to work, make dinner, do the bedtime routine.

Is this all there is? Is this all I am?
Is my calling going to feed my family?
Is the Earth going to set me up with a sweet job?
Am I wrecking it by asking these questions?

I am a tree
I am rooted in the Earth
My limbs give shade, shelter and solace
Creatures call my ample boughs home
My generousity is limitless
Yet never diminishes me or those who receive my grace

Who would find fault in the beauty of these twisted branches?
Who would measure the performance of my striving shoots?
Who could doubt that I am enough?
Just as I am
Rooted in the Earth
Reaching for the sky

I am the voice of compassion
I am the voice of the earth
I am the voice of the universal life force
I transform the world by being me.

10 thoughts on “The calling

  1. Thanks for sharing this, Kiri. This spoke to me, as I am currently striving to surrender to my own calling… not quite knowing what shape it might take… and sheepishly aware of the irony of “striving to surrender”.

  2. Wonderfully honest work Kiri. We are at home as much as the birds and the stars and the trees (to paraphrase one of my favourite Zen poems); we need to let ourselves be here gently. Also, to take up the call as ecospiritual warriors! No matter how wounded, sabotaged, helpless feeling, and so on and on for ever…

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  5. Dear Kiri,
    Thanks for the inspiration and God Bless you on your journey.
    I indeed found solace in your words and they inspired me to add a snippet from them to my facebook profile picture.

    Namaste from Nepal,

  6. Pingback: Reflections on the 2014 Integrative Arts Festival - Shambhala Meditation Center of PortlandShambhala Meditation Center of Portland

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