I am jealous of the earth
To be blanketed in snow
To not feel the cold,
But understand the sleep
My body horizontal to the land,
As my skin crystallizes
And I become built upon
By the best architect
I wish I could sit in every corner of the world forever just to have the opportunity to watch the landscape evolve. A landscape is always becoming, never quite remaining the same, and eternally at peace with change.
I don’t know if this is the common thought when nature is observed, but throughout my life I have always found myself in a state of permanent admiration for the landscape. I don’t want to simply feel connected to the environment, but I want to always progress as the landscape does: embracing each season for whatever it may bring.
The new year of 2013 will feel like nothing unless we take the time to breathe it in and embrace this next cycle of seasons, chapters, and steps in wherever each of us are along our journey. Like so many others, I have welcomed this new set of 300+ days with a period of deep reflection and strive for better awareness of my true genuine self. The poem above is something I found during this length of recent soul-searching, and it took me back to the deep longing I often feel to be swept away by the raw and frightening energy of the natural world around me. And how I wish I could do so fearlessly.
For some reason, it feels better to me to say we are “always becoming” rather than “always changing”. This has consistently arisen in my mind when I look at the journey my life has taken me on thus far and wondering where it may lead. I cannot pinpoint why exactly, but I think a big part is because a change feels like we are at the whim of some outside force, but to become feels like a choice we were always meant to make. When I look up “become” in the dictionary, it offers, “begin to be” or “grow to be”, whereas “change” says, “make or become different”. I like to believe we are on a journey of becoming our true selves, rather than constantly changing what we don’t like.
The landscape is always becoming, whether through erosion of its mountains, flooding of its water, or fluctuations in organism populations. My admiration stems from the desire to be able to become as fearlessly and flawlessly as our 4 billion year old home.
I want to know the peace that the landscape feels as life continues to evolve and grow upon it. I want to watch without fear, apprehension, or any strong emotion, but with the understanding and contentment that life is always becoming, and that is how it was always meant to be.
For the rest of our lives, we will always be evolving. Just as the landscape I admire, we are always becoming. We are constantly learning to contend with storms or difficult weather, honing our emotions to see the truth beyond them, and cultivating the growth of our personalities. All of these are the features of our landscapes, and will ultimately lead us to live as peaceably as possible with the seasons to come in this new year.
So the next time you have a chance:
Stop what you’re doing
Take in the view
The earth beneath your feet is spinning, and yet we are each taking steps, writing chapters, and harvesting new seasons to become our genuine selves. Embrace the journey.
Jeanne Clark is an Associate of the Kearsarge Cooperative & free-lance writer in Central New Hampshire. You can contact her via email at firstname.lastname@example.org.