Awaken your spirit to adventure; Hold nothing back, learn to find ease in risk; Soon you will be home in a new rhythm, For your soul senses the world that awaits you.
John O’Donohue continues to inspire me. The quote above is the last stanza in his poem For a New Beginning, published in To Bless the Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings, and which I share below.
It is one I read again at each new beginning, especially at Samhain, the beginning of a new spiral in the wheel of the year, and in the first month of the astrological year, which began with the new moon in Aries on April 1st (UTC time zone).
Each new beginning has a different feeling for me. For instance, at Samhain (and into Winter Solstice), I feel that I am birthing light from darkness, and being healed and restored by it. At that time, and into the new calendar year, I work with the goddesses of the Underworld / Otherworld such as Hekate or Aisling to envision my dreams.
The new astrological year in April, for me at least, is another opportunity to pause and review. And this new astrological year becomes more of a recalibration — and pep talk! — as I read O’Donohue’s words again.
It doesn’t really matter how many times I read this poem, as I always find something new. Donohue’s words may be the same, but I am not. Each time I read his words it is through the filter of my new learnings, my new missteps (I can’t call them failures, as I do truly learn from them!), new experiences or circumstances, and perhaps having released something that now allows me to see what I could not before.
Today, I am reading O’Donohue’s words quite literally, as I come out from a long period of mobility challenges (thankfully mostly healed now) and some unexpected and sad losses of friends and family.
Today, I needed his words of courage.
He reminds me that new beginnings are not instant, but are “quietly forming” and waiting until I am ready to emerge.
He reminds me that I may be “unable to leave” what I had outgrown, but that with courage, I can “step onto new ground”.
He reminds me that I may not to have my final destination in mind, but that I can “trust the opening”.
He reminds me that I will “learn to find ease in risk”.
What do Donahue’s words awaken in you?
Of what does he remind you that you may have forgotten?
John O’Donohue inspires me in so many ways — and perhaps they will inspire you too, as you step into visioning for the year ahead, in manifesting the dreams you now create, in transforming like the butterflies.
For a New Beginning
by John O’Donohue
In out-of-the-way places of the heart,
Where your thoughts never think to wander,
This beginning has been quietly forming,
Waiting until you were ready to emerge.
For a long time it has watched your desire,
Feeling the emptiness growing inside you,
Noticing how you willed yourself on,
Still unable to leave what you had outgrown.
It watched you play with the seduction of safety
And the gray promises that sameness whispered,
Heard the waves of turmoil rise and relent,
Wondered would you always live like this.
Then the delight, when your courage kindled,
And out you stepped onto new ground,
Your eyes young again with energy and dream,
A path of plenitude opening before you.
Though your destination is not yet clear
You can trust the promise of this opening;
Unfurl yourself into the grace of beginning
That is at one with your life's desire.
Awaken your spirit to adventure;
Hold nothing back, learn to find ease in risk;
Soon you will be home in a new rhythm,
For your soul senses the world that awaits you.
For a New Beginning was published in To Bless the Space Between Us: A Book of Blessings, published in 2008.