I don't really worry about my own heart--if I get too clumsy, drop it, break it here and there, that's okay. It can mend. It's expendable. But I cannot stand to break the heart of this land around me. I cannot sleep for the old, tattered, whispered mourning that floats through my open windows. I cannot settle my stomach or my mind in meditation unless I thrust my hands into the earth, put my lips close to the earth and whisper, "I'm here. I've not forgotten. I promise."
Maybe it's the Aquarius in me (I know it's the Aquarius in me), but I can't be stirred to a cause piloted by some charismatic someone. There are people, leaders, both here and long gone, by whom I feel inspired, energized, but that's not enough to get me to pledge my money, much less my time.
But give me silence, give me the simple grace of a sunrise, an icy morning, a vicious rain, an isolating snowstorm. Give me the quiet view of the mountains, so cold, so unforgiving, it can cut you to the bone and steal your breath. That is the call to action I'll hear; that is the call to which I'll respond.
And don't catch on that and manipulate it, sending me the best and worst displays evidenced in this particular climate in this particular time. I live in this world, and I know it well. This is not your political speech, not your soapbox, not your propaganda. It is the blanket we pull over ourselves every night, the one we tuck in neatly every morning. It is the bed we long for...
So, I love the holidays. I mean, hands-down, the solstice and Christmas Eve are my favorite days of the year. Every year I try to keep my gifts local, relevant, and thoughtful, but this isn't a post about gifts.
This is a post about wrapping.
I used to carefully open each gift I received, smoothing out the paper and folding it for storage and to reuse in the following year. But that got old (not to mention people tend to get impatient while you carefully and painstakingly open their gifts--and with good reason).
Instead, I've started hoarding scraps of fabric, old scarves, hand-me-downs, and lost-and-founds, and repurposing them. I secure everything with scrap yarn to twine that I save, and label them with cuttings from the previous year's received holiday cards.
All in all, it's a pretty nifty exercise in recycling. Plus, if the receiver is a quilter or otherwise scrappy individual, they keep the wrapping, putting it to good, creative use.
Happy Earth Day, sweet herby-yogsters, sweet renegades of wildness, wilderness, foraging, and forging.
Go rogue. Get creative. We can't glue that priceless Ming vase back together, but we can make one hell of a functional piece of art. We can adapt. We can sit-in with our glue and our paints and our brushes, our creativity and our essential selves.
We can reclaim. We can't go back. We're not meant to go back.
We sit with pain, with knowledge, and let it build us from the inside-out. We breed compassion and empathy in our bones and we express it through our eyes, our words, our fingers, our colors, our kindness, our acts of grace.