Invitation

There was a time when I was working at the Directorate for Police Community Relations that  I have to do this, to forget that I cannot carry a tune. I sung before a crowd the top brass of the two camps across EDSA and I promise I won’t do it again. I was not brave enough to post my picture wearing a slinky dress with slit so high and tube blouse. These will be my memories.

 

I saw the post of the Mountain Dreamer which made me think of the Taal Lake in one early morning.

The Invitation by Oriah

 

It doesn’t interest me

what you do for a living.

I want to know

what you ache for

and if you dare to dream

of meeting your heart’s longing.

 

It doesn’t interest me

how old you are.

I want to know

if you will risk

looking like a fool

for love

for your dream

for the adventure of being alive.

 

It doesn’t interest me

what planets are

squaring your moon…

I want to know

if you have touched

the centre of your own sorrow

if you have been opened

by life’s betrayals

or have become shrivelled and closed

from fear of further pain.

 

I want to know

if you can sit with pain

mine or your own

without moving to hide it

or fade it

or fix it.

 

I want to know

if you can be with joy

mine or your own

if you can dance with wildness

and let the ecstasy fill you

to the tips of your fingers and toes

without cautioning us

to be careful

to be realistic

to remember the limitations

of being human.

 

It doesn’t interest me

if the story you are telling me

is true.

I want to know if you can

disappoint another

to be true to yourself.

If you can bear

the accusation of betrayal

and not betray your own soul.

If you can be faithless

and therefore trustworthy.

 

I want to know if you can see Beauty

even when it is not pretty

every day.

And if you can source your own life

from its presence.

 

I want to know

if you can live with failure

yours and mine

and still stand at the edge of the lake

and shout to the silver of the full moon,

“Yes.”

 

It doesn’t interest me

to know where you live

or how much money you have.

I want to know if you can get up

after the night of grief and despair

weary and bruised to the bone

and do what needs to be done

to feed the children.

 

It doesn’t interest me

who you know

or how you came to be here.

I want to know if you will stand

in the centre of the fire

with me

and not shrink back.

 

It doesn’t interest me

where or what or with whom

you have studied.

I want to know

what sustains you

from the inside

when all else falls away.

 

I want to know

if you can be alone

with yourself

and if you truly like

the company you keep

in the empty moments.

 

By Oriah © Mountain Dreaming, from the book The Invitation published by HarperONE, San Francisco,

 

If I keep a green bough in my heart, the singing bird will come. –Chinese proverb

T

 

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