Thirty years ago today I took up the practice of sobriety. A road that continually empties and refills from Grace. All of which seems to work best when I interfere the least.
Deserted like the wharves at dawn.
It is the hour of departure, oh deserted one!
Cold flower heads are raining over my heart.
Oh pit of debris, fierce cave of the shipwrecked.
In you the wars and the flights accumulated.
From you the wings of the song birds rose.
You swallowed everything, like distance.
Like the sea, like time. In you everything sank!
It was the happy hour of assault and the kiss.
The hour of the spell that blazed like a lighthouse.
~Pablo Neruda from A Song of Despair
Every time I feel smashed down, pulverized, or my sense of self seems demolished, some new set of seeds sprout and take root while my eyes shaded in my own darkness. These castle ruins that I photographed in western Ireland had seen the rise and fall of many attempts of humans to achieve power, security, and a clan’s juxtaposition over others living on this land.
In the end, the stones carefully cut and laid by Masons are now the roost of the falcons. The walls made strong to turn the enemy away now serve the ivy well reaches for the sunlight.
All of our hustling, shuffling, and fret really never amount to anything. No empire withstands wind rain and the passing of seasons. Thousands of years of humankind’s ignorant domination on the land can be erased in the blink of the earth’s eye.
How tiny are then are we in the grand scheme of events on life’s timeline? Into the woes of any to killer day even be a blip on the radar screen? And what of the kindness of the gardeners hand? Is this not being courage me for life to carry on?