“I am only one, but still I am one.
I cannot do everything, but still I can do something.
And because I cannot do everything,
I will not refuse to do the something I can do.”

Edward Everett Hale

Sunday, 16 July 2017

Quiet Interval of Peace

I've just spent a week in the beautiful Welsh village of Trawsfynydd. Its setting is beautiful, above a deep blue lake, with the green and brown mountains and hills, noisy with sheep, all around. Last night, on my return, I felt moved to write a sestina about it:

Trawsfynydd: A Sestina

I have this bless├Ęd interval of peace,
A pile of books and notes and files to read,
The hours stretch out before me like a path,
A week out of time to do some writing.
Inside the cottage all is very still;
Out in the world, the sky is dazzling blue.

Unsettling my mind, I’m yearning for blue –
The hills lure me out with promise of peace.
I walk to the lake, its quiet waters still,
The beauty of God is there to be read.
Yet somehow I must get back to writing …
I sigh and retrace my steps down the path.

And muse as I walk down the soft, green path,
Turning my back on the water so blue,
On my research, that I should be writing;
Instead I’m possessed by a deep, quiet peace,
Which bids me forget what I need to read
And start on this poem in quietness still.

So I get out my journal, sit quite still,
Fall into reverie, follow the path
Of my thoughts as I write, re-write, then read,
Begging the muse to come out of the blue
Bestowing on me her blessing of peace
As words start to flow, and I am writing.

Bliss happens. I would not exchange writing
The joy of creation, that serves to still
My restless heart and restore my lost peace,
Placing me firmly back on the right path.
Words down on paper – why was I so blue?
I pull the files towards me, start to read.

I read and take notes, then once again read,
Nothing now stops the flow of the writing.
I glance outside, the sky is now dark blue.
I look at my watch, quite unready still
To stop work just yet, now seeing the path
To fulfilment, and a deep, grace-filled peace.

No more time to read, it’s time to be still;
No more swift writing, I’ve mapped out the path,
With quick strokes of blue, time to trust in peace.

Not the best sestina in the world. But it has satisfied a very deep need in me, to translate what is in my heart into words on paper. Writing is such a glorious satisfaction. I feel so very blessed.