Finding Peace in Transitions
We're part of nature's changes. Feel the peace of wild things
It’s the last Sunday in March and in the outer landscape around me, there are both subtle and vibrant signs of spring—robins and finches singing outside my kitchen when I make my first morning coffee at 6am; daffodils in full bloom; magnolias and dogwoods starting to flash their pink. In the landscape of southeastern Pennsylvania where I live, the transition from the grey of winter to the vibrancy of spring is magic.
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And in the shadow of all of that beauty, there is also the tenderness of transition. Letting the winter go. In my inner landscape, like all of us humans, I carry worries and regrets; hope and ruminations. Some days feel heavier than others.
This week, I’m inviting you to journey with me into Wendell Berry’s The Peace of Wild Things and use your active imagination to find a landscape, whether it’s an actual one that you inhabit or one that you feel when you close your eyes. Find that place where ‘the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief’ live. I love going to that place.
For folks who are new here to ‘Journey With The Seasons,’ the final Sunday of the month features a guided meditation. This practice helps many people to visualize and get in deeper contact with their imagination, but if it doesn’t connect with you, no worries. You can listen to the poem here (read by Berry) and go right to the writing prompt.
If you’d like the guided meditation, click the arrow at the top of the page.
The Peace of Wild Things by Wendell Berry When despair for the world grows in me and I wake in the night at the least sound in fear of what my life and my children’s lives may be, I go and lie down where the wood drake rests in his beauty on the water, and the great heron feeds. I come into the peace of wild things who do not tax their lives with forethought of grief. I come into the presence of still water. And I feel above me the day-blind stars waiting with their light. For a time I rest in the grace of the world, and am free.
Writing Practice: Set aside 5-7 minutes for this practice. Write in a journal or open a ‘Journey with The Season’ document where you can return each Sunday.
Look over the poem after listening and reading it.
When you imagine that place, where the peace of wild things are, what do you see?
Describe the colors, sounds, feelings of that place.
How does your body feel when you’re in the place? What happens to your heart rate? What tensions and fears soften?
Describe yourself in that peace of wild things and notice what emerges.
Please comment or email me at firstname.lastname@example.org with any writings or reflections that you’d like to share.
Check out this beautiful video of the poem, also featuring Berry’s voice.
Get out some crayons, colored pencils or markers and make a quick sketch of your wild place. No judgement zone! I’m not a visual artist by any means but I am reclaiming the fun and joy of playing with colors or paper.
See what emerges—just for fun.
If you’re interested in joining my next online expressive writings series Soulful Spring starting 4/16, registration is now open. An amazing community is forming.
For folks in the Greater Philly area...
Come play in person at The Joy of Creativity Retreat! All of the details and registration is here!
Thank you for being here and for your support.