from the Soul of a Pilgrim by Christine Valters Paintner
the practice of Packing Lightly
What if you bowed
before every dandelion you met
and wrote love letters to
squirrels and pigeons
who crossed your path?
What if scrubbing the dishes became
an act of single reverence for the gift
of being washed clean, and what if the
rhythmic percussion of chopping carrots
became the drumbeat of your dance?
What if you stepped into the shower
each morning only to be baptized anew
and sent forth to serve the grocery bagger,
the bank teller, and the bus driver
through simple kindness?
And what if the things that make your
your heart dizzy with delight were
no longer stuffed into the basement
of your being and allowed out to play
in the lush and green fields?
There are two ways to live in this world:
As if everything were enchanted
or nothing at all.
There is no in between, although you
keep trying to live this divided life knowing
deep down something is awry.
You have lived long enough
with this tearing apart.
Come out into the wide world
and discover there, companions and guides
at every turn, and even those who summon
curses from your heart have
a divine spark within them bright enough
to invite wonder.