Monday, May 4, 2009

Slowing Down and Creating Space

I ran across this at a conference I recently attended. Slowing down, creating space for God, friends, life, leisure, is always a challenge. The poem is metaphor for the need we all have to create that sacred space.

By Sam Intrator and Megan Scribner in
Teaching with Fire: Poetry That Sustains Courage to Teach

What makes a fire burn
is space between the logs
a breathing space,
too much of a good thing,
too many logs
packed in too tight
can douse the flames
almost as surely
as a pail of water

So building fires
requires attention
to the spaces in between
as much as to the wood

When we are able
to build open spaces
in the same way
we have learned
to pile on logs
then we come to see how
it is fuel, and the absence of fuel
together, that makes fire possible

we only need to lay a log
lightly from time to time
a fire
simply because the space is there
with opening
in which the flames
that know just how it wants to burn
can find its way