Waiting by Leza Lowitz

[One of the watch-words of Advent is waiting. Here is a thoughtful poem that gave me a lot to think and pray about when I read it earlier this year.]

You keep waiting for something to happen,
the thing that lifts you out of yourself,

catapults you into doing all the things you’ve put off
the great things you’re meant to do in your life,

but somehow never quite get to.
You keep waiting for the planets to shift

the new moon to bring news,
the universe to align, something to give.

Meanwhile, the pile of papers, the laundry, the dishes the job —
it all stacks up while you keep hoping

for some miracle to blast down upon you,
scattering the piles to the winds.

Sometimes you lie in bed, terrified of your life.
Sometimes you laugh at the privilege of waking.

But all the while, life goes on in its messy way.
And then you turn forty. Or fifty. Or sixty…

and some part of you realizes you are not alone
and you find signs of this in the animal kingdom —

when a snake sheds its skin its eyes glaze over,
it slinks under a rock, not wanting to be touched,

and when caterpillar turns to butterfly
if the pupa is brushed, it will die —

and when the bird taps its beak hungrily against the egg
it’s because the thing is too small, too small,

and it needs to break out.
And midlife walks you into that wisdom

that this is what transformation looks like —
the mess of it, the tapping at the walls of your life,

the yearning and writhing and pushing,
until one day, one day

you emerge from the wreck
embracing both the immense dawn

and the dusk of the body,
glistening, beautiful

just as you are.

Waiting appears in Poems of Awakening edited by Betsy Small

http://www.amazon.com/Poems-Awakening-Betsy-Small/dp/1432734342/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1321561491&sr=8-1

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About Paul Wharton

I am a cradle Catholic, a native West Virginian, and a priest since April 24, 1982. Spiritual Direction has made a tremendous difference in my life and I encourage people to try it out. My motto is "Progress not perfection." I am grateful that God has done for me what I could not do for myself.
This entry was posted in Songs and Poetry. Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Waiting by Leza Lowitz

  1. Waiting seems like an alien concept in today’s world. There’s so much to be gained by it. Thanks for the nice thought

  2. Denise says:

    This post walks hand in hand with my recent reflections on the 3-year anniversary of my husband, Morgan’s death. Waiting is a hard thing to do, no doubt. I love the way she used a shedding snake and caterpillar to help with the visualization. I hope and pray soon to “emerge from the wreck,” and discover the new me.

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