Wednesday, August 26, 2009

"You are pure soul and made of ground"

"Lovers find secret places
inside this violent world
where they make transactions
with beauty.
Reason says, Nonsense.
I have walked and measured the walls here.
There are no places like that." --Rumi, Secret Places (from the book 'Bridge to the Soul')

Since Saturday, I've been reading a lot of Rumi & Hafiz. I don't know why...but something about their poetry feels like breathing.
& I've been thinking about this distinction: Love vs. Reason. Body vs. Mind.
in that first excerpt, Rumi seems to agree with that idea that they are separate.

Then again, in another poem, Rumi says
"You are pure soul
and made of ground

You are eyeshadow
and the kindness in eyelight."

Lately, my mind & body have been feeling particularly separate. It's interesting to me how that distinction & our critique of it often leaves out the whole idea of "soul." Maybe "soul" is what happens when they merge. But I don't think so. I think it's more complicated than that. Not that I know what I'm talking about. What I do know is that lately, the only thing my mind & body seem to have in common, besides existing in the same space (most of the time) is that both are completely at the mercy of my emotions. Which, as seems to be the trend when it comes to absolute power, are playing all kinds of games with the rest of me. Ah, life.

And, as if they weren't already disconnected enough, in two days I start grad school. Don't get me wrong - I'm excited. Just a little nervous...
And then there's the part where I'm also a little exhausted. I don't know why I thought it was a good idea to take this AMAZING anti-racist training program AND start grad school in the same semester. And then at the same time, I don't want to give up either of them. Not that I have that option, since I've already committed to them both, but even if I could, I wouldn't. What I want is to be able to fully immerse myself in both experiences. Of course there are other parts of my life that would continue to exist, and I'm not saying I don't want that too. But these are both new experiences that I want to cherish and remember. I want to journal about my experiences and realizations in Anne Braden AND i wanna talk about how I feel about returning to academia, how I feel academia is both useful AND problematic, how it might (and might not) be able to relate to grassroots movements, etc. But how do I do that when I'm also trying to do all the reading for both, and actually stay adequately engaged in both? ...And as I said, these are not anywhere near the only two things in my life. They are just the two newest ones. Hmm...

My body is overwhelmed by all this & got sick, so now I'm dealing with that too.

Not that I'm complaining. Just processing. There is a difference.
Mostly, I'm excited about all the things in my life.
Well, I'm not excited that I'm sick right now, but besides that.
*deep breaths*

One last poem, this one's by Hafiz:

Dropping Keys

The small man
Builds cages for everyone
While the sage,
Who has to duck his head
When the moon is low,
Keeps dropping keys all night long
For the Beautiful

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