Near the Light

Near the Light April 16, 2013

Read Mark’s weekly reflections on The Huffington Post.

Sometimes, in the midst of working through frustrations, it’s possible to glimpse the truth that, though I’m frustrated, not everything is frustrating. Sometimes, in the midst of sadness, it’s possible to glimpse that, though I’m sad, not everything is sad. This poem came upon me while in such a mood.


Near the Light

I’m saved by what is timeless.

Can taste it though it fills no cup.

Can feel it though it can’t be seen.


Yesterday, an old brooding song was

sung low, making the afternoon drop

its shoulders. Even the wind circled

back. I dropped my napkin, glad to

feel that old ache waiting like a lucky

coin I rub but seldom look at. Every-

one broods and holds on to what they

think is lucky.


I’m saved by your laugh, which stops the

crows of pleasure and pain from pecking

at each other inside my head.


This morning I tried three times to read

something I’ve wanted to read for years.

But you were sick and the car broke

down. And waiting for the tow truck,

I stood in the shade of a locust tree.

The patches of sun reminded me

that we’ve already arrived.


A Question to Walk With: Identify a mood of frustration or sadness that you are currently struggling with. Without denying or minimizing your frustration or sadness, let your mind and heart open beyond your struggle and describe, if you can, life around you that is not frustrating or sad. What does it feel like to allow both to take up space in your mind and heart at the same time?


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