Lost by David Wagoner
Stand still. The trees ahead and bushes beside you
Are not lost. Wherever you are is called Here,
And you must treat it as a powerful stranger,
Must ask permission to know it and be known.
The forest breathes. Listen. It answers,
I have made this place around you.
If you leave it, you may come back again, saying Here.
No two trees are the same to Raven.
No two branches are the same to Wren.
If what a tree or a bush does is lost on you,
You are surely lost. Stand still. The forest knows
Where you are. You must let it find you.
I just read this gorgeous poem and had to share it. I'm doing research for my sabbatical project, which is on pairing poems/short stories with each chapter in Tolle's The Power of Now.
Sometimes, especially when I watch too much television and its plethora of mindless commercials, or drive on a six lane freeway among the towering cars which only seem to get bigger as the gas gets more expensive, or when I'm in a shopping mall like the San Francisco Center, I feel we are truly lost. When Bloomingdales opened in the city a few years ago, I went there one day and got lost and couldn't find my way out. It is a mall built along another mall, a shopping center added onto another shopping center, stores upon stores, doors upon doors that lead into an extravaganza of excess, orbits within orbits of glitz. Well, I was there, among the consuming warriors, I was there buying the invisible t-shirt bra, a bra that can't be seen underneath your t-shirt. I paid a lot of money for the invisible. Then I tried to find a pair of jeans. There were so many different kinds of jeans, I kneeled on the floor of the dressing room, weeping under the mountain of denim, unable to choose. I went on, lost in the the Land of Glitzy Gods, and nearly fainted from hunger, trying to figure out which restaurant to go to, what to eat, in a food court bigger than the Taj Mahal.
Then I think of Joseph Campbell who said the world has always been this way, a horrific opera. But I don't want it to be a horrific opera. I need to buy less, need less, need to need less. And listen to the stillness.
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