Friday, June 20, 2014

When The Meadows On The Body Turn Gray

When The Meadows On The Body Turn Gray

When the meadows on the body begin to turn gray,
let your eye soften toward yourself,
and those who are close.

Let anyone, anything, inside who has driven you,
let them retire or move at an easier pace.

And where you were once firm,
and might have even said to someone,
feel my muscle, or admired it yourself, 

yes, now look at the way you have become,
or will someday if you live as long as you may want. 

Many do all they can to not have to face
the candle going out. 

The wonder of my body aging, dying, is finding
another flame within, a holy eternal

sphere, that will never go out and is more beautiful
than all the form you have known - put together. 

When the fields on the body begin to turn gray
let your hand's touch upon all, soften. 

         No one likes to talk about death, and I would agree that it is a topic best avoided. I will certainly entertain anyone who wants to speak about it, but like most humans, I fear it or find it unsettling, not because I don't think it's natural (I do, no one needs to live forever), but because it represents the end of my spectrum of knowledge, it represents the unknown.
         Converesely, it is quite comforting to recognize that enduring stories - great literature or great love live on. To borrow a line from Frost, these epic and very human tales will be told "with a sigh someday ages and ages hence". Gibran did not fear death, but he did fear not having his work read anymore after his death. He was proud when The Prophet came out in October of 1923 and sent Mary the first copy before it did.
         On October 2, 1923 she wrote back: "The Prophet came today, and it did more than realize my hopes. For it seemed in its compacted form to open further new doors of desire and imagination in me, and to create about the universe in nimbus, so that I read it as the center of all things. And the text is more beautiful, nearer, more revealing, more marvelous in conveying Reality and in sweetening consciousness than ever. The English, they style, the wording, the music - is exquisite, Kahlil - just sheerly beautiful. Bless you, bless you, bless you, for saying it all, and for being such a worker that you bring that inner life into form and expression - for having energy and the patience of fire and air and water and rock. This book will be held as one of the treasures of English literature. And in our darkness we will open it to find ourselves again and the heaven and earth without ourselves. Generations will not exhaust it, but instead, generation after generation will find in the book what they would fain be - and it will be better loved as men grow riper and riper. That flame in you will be met by many more. And more still will love you as years go by, long long after your body is dust. They will find you in your work, just as God is found in his."

Don't Blink (2007), Kenny Chesney 

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