Some of us have been conscious seekers as far back as we can remember. (I even wrote a book: Chasing God, which told the story---as far as it and inspiration went.) Today’s collage carries the words, “Carpe Diem.” When I was 35, I wrote the poem you see below. I knew then, as I know now, that what we seek is ‘Beyond’ and that paradoxically, we must seize the day, too. The card also carries an image of a young woman. Whatever that is that seeks always seems young, vibrant and entranced. Perhaps her gaze is drawn to the retablo draped with a rosary and honored with a candle. The retablo carries something of simplicity about what is sought. We can’t ‘think’ our way to the Source, we can only approach in simplicity, devotion and gratitude. The bottom of the card portrays a rigorous climb up the mountain. We each have our ‘Seven Story Mountain’ (Thomas Merton). The journey demands trust---a necessity, not an indulgence! Hang on to the guide rope, whatever you do.
Woman at Thirty-Five
Burrowing into a foamy bank,
Investigating in the tub ‘s musky scent
Stubby-haired, scarred knees---
I shave these lumpy, red legs again.
Fatigue melts, drifts away
(Some of it, not all the aches from all the times)
On underwater currents, surreptitious in the hot suds.
I’m thirty-five years old.
When my female body was newfangled to me,
I worried that soul shrivel
My eager-nervous hours of cream, cosmetic, corset.
Now that my female flesh is used
(And me used to it-
New wrinkles are old wrinkle)
I no longer weigh the option
of body versus soul.
I only know my life’s half spent.
I paint my ridged toenails bright crimson.
“Goldbrick Red,” the label reads.
The mirror mists over with swirls of steam
Too dense to see my eyebrows.
Tweezers? Useless in this cloud of unknowing.
Ten more years till menopause.
My husband’s even older.
I should keep a journal
(Seize the day-
The poets called it Carpe Diem)
Then my son can read it
When I’m dead