“Your holiest pain might come from your yearning to change yourself in exactly the way you’d like the world around you to change.” — Rob Brezsny
I climbed a hallowed mountain
last week, with familiar bloated ache
that I call tummy pain. The ageless mystic
basically said: When are you going
to stop monkeying around
and play big
like the warrior you truly are?
I may be old, but I’m no wimp.
I rose to the challenge,
setting my intention like a heedless
knight starting an impossible quest.
We parted ways as my horse clattered
toward the fearsome dragon.
That was easy, I decided right before
seventy shards of glass
shattered me into a quivering mass.
I couldn’t move, I couldn’t eat, I couldn’t breathe.
It took two full days before I could even wonder:
did I ask for this? I certainly requested
immediate aid, and it came pouring in
melting the sharp pieces, a flow
of molten energy finally shifting.
I forced down bone broth before
the next wave hit, and I embarked
on the grand tour of pain,
challenging my perceptions
of my own strength and will to live.
I’d thought pain was no stranger
but this was like being yanked
out of a riptide just before it drowns you
and plunging headlong
down a rocky waterfall, slick
and deadly. Never catching your breath.
I constructed my own cave,
became a mystic to tune in
to all the disturbing images
in human existence, the ones encoded
in our very DNA. I knelt in gruesome
battlefields while my ancestors
spat at each other while slipping
in their spilled blood. When there are ancient
pieces of yourself so despised,
you feel helpless and worthless
and you writhe in agony, wondering
where is the remedy?
The surgeons stand ready, knives gleaming,
but what do you cut out
when the key is locked in your very cells?
I’m standing at the edge of the cave
this morning, looking into a downpour
with darkly grumbling low clouds and fiercely
thrown arrows of pure
flashing light, determined to explore
this question: what can I change
in myself that I most want to change
in this world?
Inspired by The Daily Word Prompt: explore