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Interior with a Girl Reading - Henri Matisse

Henri Matisse

I’ve long been a fan of David Whyte’s poetry and this one is no exception. It seems it may have been written especially for these times, when so many of us find ourselves cocooned in our homes, feeling alone, cut off from everything.

And yet, even here, all alone, he writes, is this “swelling presence” of the everyday and ordinary, this “chorus” of the mundane that surrounds us. This “conversation” with kettles and cooking pots, doors and stairs is a grand symphony that accompanies our solo voice. Yet these intimate and animate objects, like a constant companion that comforts and supports, just waiting for our interplay, go almost unnoticed.

My elbow leans lazily on my desk and my hand cradles the mouse as I stop to stare at this brilliant invention before me. Then I lean back in my chair and continue typing thoughts into cyberspace. The wall clock behind me waits patiently for my wayward glance, ticking out the seconds so it can tell me the exact time when I need to know.

Yes, everything, everything is just waiting for me. Somehow these objects and I are woven together, seamlessly creating this life we share. We are never alone if only we would look and see.

Everything is Waiting For you

by David Whyte

Your great mistake is to act the drama
as if you were alone. As if life
were a progressive and cunning crime
with no witness to the tiny hidden
transgressions. To feel abandoned is to deny
the intimacy of your surroundings. Surely,
even you, at times, have felt the grand array;
the swelling presence, and the chorus, crowding
out your solo voice. You must note
the way the soap dish enables you,
or the window latch grants you freedom.
Alertness is the hidden discipline of familiarity.
The stairs are your mentor of things
to come, the doors have always been there
to frighten you and invite you,
and the tiny speaker in the phone
is your dream-ladder to divinity.

Put down the weight of your aloneness and ease into the
conversation. The kettle is singing
even as it pours you a drink, the cooking pots
have left their arrogant aloofness and
seen the good in you at last. All the birds
and creatures of the world are unutterably
themselves. Everything is waiting for you.

Links to more poetry by Whyte

Something in this Sleeping Earth

Opened at Last

Melt into that Fierce Heat of Living