Monday, December 7, 2009

late, by myself

when i think of the life
i am inside,
i have a sense of space
that is at once
very large
and very small.

the big frameworks
rumble and groan into place
so context
over the span of a life
arrives
hand-in-hand
with a clear sense that
those very same frameworks
are entirely metaphoric
and don't exist
in the form i perceive them.

they're openings,
opportunities
to perceive this whole process
in its essence
which is love.

le bateau atelier (the boat studio) monet


late, by myself, in the boat of myself,
no light and no land anywhere,
cloudcover thick. i try to stay
just above the surface,
yet I'm already under
and living with the ocean.

from "essential rumi" translated by coleman barks

32 comments:

Jenny Stevning said...

Wow. I have never heard the Rumi poem. I LOVE it! There is more room for us in the ocean...ALL of us. As a dear friend told me: May you never know fear as you travel the deep and wide ocean of life.
Love.

Kathleen said...

Beautiful, Steven. Curiously, my theme today is water. Transformation by water.

Dan Gurney said...

Wonderful! Wonderful!

Rachel Fenton said...

This is restful. Thank you.

steven said...

good morning jenny stevning! rumi's writing has been a part of my life for around twenty five years now. it has been a portal into clarity, and has been especially helpful in gaining perspective. there's room, no need to know fear. have a peaceful day. steven

steven said...

kathleen - when i saw the image of the houseboat studio my eyes opened wide! what a beautiful idea. it ties so well into the larger idea i wanted to share through my thinking and especially through rumi's poem. serendipity!! steven

steven said...

thankyou dan thankyou!! steven

steven said...

rachel - sometimes that's what this blog offers and can afford! i'm glad. steven

Pauline said...

Rumi was able to see with internal and eternal eyes. I have several of Coleman Bark's books. There is a Rumi poem for every moment of life, it seems, and all are beautiful. Thanks for sharing.

steven said...

pauline - that's so true. it's the dance between the inner and the outer and the above and the below that gives rumi's writing such insightful presence. have a lovely day. steven

Golden West said...

If you ever get a chance, check out the two disc DVD series "The Impressionists", a dramatization of their work and mutual friendships told through the voice of Monet. I've watched it 3 times. It's something your 6th graders would probably really enjoy as well.

Barry said...

So simply said and yet so vast in its implications. And the houseboat was perfect.

Bonnie, Original Art Studio said...

beautiful....as ever

Reya Mellicker said...

I believe we are on a wavelength today and yesterday, Steven, and I'm so grateful for that.

Your words, and that exquisite Monet painting, echo the kinds of thoughts and images I'm experiencing. Thank you for giving me words and images. Thank you!

ellen abbott said...

The boat studio. How wonderful. I've always wanted to live on a boat house.

Titus said...

Thank you steven - I needed this today.

Linda Sue said...

This Rumi poem paralyses me- in a gOOD way. The picture is a perfect fit.Brillliant post as usual, thanks you!

acornmoon said...

Thank you so much for your Christmas card order, my little robin has prepared himself for a big flight across the ocean, he is bringing his own sandwiches!

I absolutely love your header with the frost on berries, it is magical.

The Weaver of Grass said...

Oh steven, how lovely it would be to have ones own bateau atelier.

Linda said...

Inside the ocean we sometimes feel swamped, especially at this time of year.... that's where Nemo comes in... "keep swimming, keep swimming."
A Monet masterpiece is always a peaceful, reflective place to dwell. Keep the pressure at a minimum and allow Steven time to breathe and relax before the holidays. =D

steven said...

hey golden west thanks for the tip - it's an interesting thing that my sixers love the work of the impressionists and of canada's own "group of seven". they like it more than my own grade six faves which were kandinsky and stella and mondrian. have a peaceful evening. steven

steven said...

thanks so much barry - i stand on the shoulders of giamts with many of these postings but i want to share - hope to share something of what i think through their words and artworks. have a lovely evening. steven

steven said...

bonnie thankyou so much - as always! steven

steven said...

reya it feels really good to be on the same wavelength as someone i admire so deeply. thankyou for noticing. steven

steven said...

ellen can you imagine?!!! oh my - it makes me breathless just imagining how amazing a life that could be. stopping to buy food along the way. cooking on board in sleepy bends in the river. the people you'd meet. throw in some writing, some painting. oh my oh my!!! steven

steven said...

titus i'm glad that i could share what you needed. it's funny that synchronicity isn't it. have a peaceful evening. steven

steven said...

linda sue it is so beautiful and perfect in its own way i think. the poem is like so many of rumi's - it just grabs you and then caresses your understanding into something much deeper and richer than the words alone might suggest. have a lovely evening. steven

steven said...

acornmoon what a sweet note!!!!! the header is beautiful isn't it?!! it's berries not seventy five metres from where i'm sitting although i think that at this moment they're covered in snow as we have some on the ground as of this afternoon......... have a fruitful evening. steven

steven said...

weaver - wouldn't it just! read my reply to ellen for more gushiness around this idea!!!! have a lovely evening in the dale. steven

steven said...

hi linda - this is so true! between the work of school, the work of my home, and the work of the season, the play of school, home and the season get swamped. i appreciate your advice - really i do so thankyou linda! thankyou. steven

Richard Jesse Watson said...

I don't remember every seeing this painting of Monet's. A clever idea for a studio, and a luscious painting.

steven said...

richard the first time i saw this painting i skipped past it and that would have been about six months ago but when i was preparing this post its image popped up in my mind's eyes and i went searching. it speaks to me as ana rtist and also as a human this whole notion of a small space, entirely personal, devoted to creation. if i were a writer a story would unfold from it. i can feel the story in me as i write this. perhaps somewhere further down the line of my life that story will birth! steven