I was alone on a sunny shore
by the forest’s pale blue lake,
in the sky floated a single cloud
and on the water a single isle.
The ripe sweetness of summer dripped
in beads from every tree
and straight into my opened heart
a tiny drop ran down.
by Edith Södergran, translated from Swedish by Stina Katchadourian
I hadn’t come across the Swedish speaking Finnish poet Edith Södergran who was born at the end of the 19th century, before finding some of her poems in the beautiful anthology Women in Praise of the Sacred edited by Jane Hirshfield. I enjoyed reading a bit more about her interesting life on wiki (see link above) and marveled at how she was able to savour the sweetness of summer – and life itself? – in the midst of what sounds like challenging circumstances.
And isn’t that the art of life, allowing the heart to be open to receive the magic that is present all around us, if only we open to it? In the book Wanderful that I was recently reading, it suggests imagining at random times (and especially when you’re not particularly enjoying yourself) that you’ve died a while ago, and that you are given the opportunity to come back to life for 1 minute: this minute. How do you experience this minute? What happens to your boredom, irritation, sense of lack? What can be relished?
May there be much ripe sweetness dripping into your heart!
PS Receiving this sweetness may require showing up, being present. And while we all have moments of being present, with practice we can have many more of them! If you’re ready to train in the practice of mindfulness, why not start with a free online introduction course?