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Creativity- The Inner Healer

Posted Mar 9th, 2014 in Mental Health

Creativity- The Inner Healer

THE JOURNEY by Mary Oliver

One day you finally knew

what you had to do, and began,

though the voices around you

kept shouting

their bad advice--

though the whole house

began to tremble

and you felt the old tug

at your ankles.

"Mend my life!"

each voice cried.

But you didn't stop.

You knew what you had to do,

though the wind pried

with its stiff fingers

at the very foundations,

though their melancholy

was terrible.

It was already late

enough, and a wild night,

and the road full of fallen

branches and stones.

But little by little,

as you left their voices behind,

the stars began to burn

through the sheets of clouds,

and there was a new voice

which you slowly

recognized as your own,

that kept you company

as you strode deeper and deeper

into the world,

determined to do

the only thing you could do--

determined to save

the only life you could save.

Mary Oliver's poem speaks to me of a deep inner healing journey and an intimate, body-centered relationship to creativity. She writes from an embodied, inner knowing of the challenging task there is to healing and the understandable resistance we have to doing it. She beautifully captures the voices of our resistance, pulling us back every step of the way.

These ancient voices that hang on so vigilantly, with their goal of keeping us safe and out of harm's reach, end up being the very bars of the cage that prevent us from flying free. So familiar and ingrained, they are often invisible to us.

She captures the resilient, authentic-self-voice, striving to grow and evolve in spite of the great challenges it faces. She writes of the courageous spirit, plodding along with great effort at times, triumphantly burning through the illusions of the past, to see our light, our sparkle and our infinite expanse.

We end up back at that deep, inner wisdom, knowing that we must save ourselves. We are the only ones who can do it.

Her creativity has embraced her healing journey, producing a beautiful poem for all of us to lean into and find strength from as we travel along on our own healing journeys.

Photo:SOUL CARDS, Deborah Koff-Chapin


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