I want to reclaim my homeland.
To reclaim my homeland is to reclaim the secrets of myself.
And so I’ve been thinking a lot about home and about place. I’ve been thinking about longing and missing and being dis-membered.
I’ve been thinking about what is well within my soul…and what aches. I’ve been trying to name what is good and peaceful within me and why alongside peace, the world within feels barren, so silent and empty.
I’ve not yet found the words for any of these things, and so… I’ve been thinking. Thinking about living with mystery. Thinking about Love. Thinking about difference and complexity. Thinking about what is true.
Truth is at home within me, in my being, in my presence. Thus, I have been attempting to turn toward my soul with steadfast care. Attempting to expand my awareness, to notice and investigate. To hear the sound of Truth resounding authentically within me – loud or soft, rumbling beneath my breastbone.
I’ve been attempting to unearth that which lies within – truth, love, me. And sometimes I wonder if therein lies the rub.
Could excavation be a work of grace? Is the unearthing not mine to do?
How much of transformation do I instigate, forcing change like prodding cattle?
And how much is simply the act of being rooted, embedded deeply in the soil of Love shedding what no longer serves like autumnal leaves falling from trees?
Like the dross that rises to the fore in a refiner’s barrel as metals are purified in fire. Is my part only to yield, to surrender to the flames of Love and submit to the burning away of all that resists Love’s transfiguration? How do I participate with Love in this longing for alignment, longing for reclamation without wrestling full control away from the Beloved?
Oh, Love. Oh, lover, burn away all that hinders. Oh, Love. Oh, lover, burn within me. Ignite me in Love’s flame. Oh, Love, consume me in passion like the rapturous bliss of lovers. Seared by your kiss.
The Beloved runs, do I give chase or do I wait till the Beloved draws near?
Like Rumi in his pursuit of Shams-i-Tabriz, I seek to lay hold of all that lights the Beloved on fire. For there, I am convinced, within the flames of the Beloved are the secrets to my reclamation and the answers to my longing.
I know the fire will singe me, burn me, consume me, and I also know the fire of Love contains the wisdom for my re-membering.
What else is left for me than to be swallowed whole in Love itself? The place that knows the whole of me is living and breathing. The Beloved’s love is my homeland. May the Beloved grant me access to their beautiful face that I might always be tethered there.
Oh, Love; oh, lover. Beyond Love’s sacred name there are no words for this yearning. Of no place and every place, Love finds me there. In my longing and restlessness, in my desire and discontent, the Beloved bids me come.
Through the night watch I seek my Beloved. In the luminous darkness, we commune. Mended, pieced together once more by the Beloved’s kiss, my faith in self, in life, in humanity is renewed.
As the sun rises and the new day dawns, life emerges once again. The first day of a new life: new beginnings, new opportunities. Satiated by my Beloved’s tender embrace, I am not as lost or lonely. I feel alive – aware, awake.
Everyday begins anew: every new day is the first day of a new life. New opportunities to do anything. But sometimes I wake in despair. Memories of Love’s flame receding to the recesses of my mind, and I return listlessly to my routine: the missing, the longing, the ache. I do the same things over again – unseeing, unthinking, unfeeling, numb.
Thus I cling, trying to remain ablaze, senses sparking coated with the dew of the Beloved’s Love. As the dew fades from the grass’s blade, memory of my love encounter gives way to life’s happenings. Love is not meant to be held tightly.
Love and I meld so deeply into one another, we become. We are. Integrated, a part of, Love is not found outside myself. Thus, there is nothing to hold on to and everything to receive.
That is the reclamation of my homeland, the secret of myself: the Beloved and the lover are one.