Something led me back to a song, an old favourite of thirty years; Kate Bush’s ‘Under the Ivy’, though it was an unexpected cover by Tracey Thorn that made me look so closely at it again. Something a little startling about hearing a cover version of Kate made me listen closely to the lyrics…I mean, really listen in a way I had seldom done recently, or perhaps I was never so ready to hear them.
That was two nights ago and then, this morning, I woke very early with the song in my head and longed to hear it so much that I got up to do just that. I found myself searching for a video that would compliment Kate’s version so I could share my new enthusiasm for it – for the timely poignancy of the words – and, out of many that are out there, it was the divinely feminine montage of paintings by another personal favourite, J.W. Waterhouse (below), that leapt out at me – a pairing of two of my very favourite artists across time; what was more likely to garner my attention!
I watched the video and, suddenly from nowhere, had tears and a flush of emotion welling up then just as quickly gone again, as though something had just been released in me through a moment of profound realisation. Like a rendezvous set up in time and space, the message all these synchronicities held for me was meant for this very moment, this very breath held, this supremely withdrawn time, this incredibly slowed paced that I find myself living in and which I am still, yet, teaching myself to be in full acceptance of. That is, acceptance without the need to feign frustration with myself or to apologise, to rush-ahead towards some imagined exit, to try to define or find excuses and answers, to know endings, to start or finish projects, to urge ‘more’ or ‘try harder’ out of myself, to force or to criticise. Instead, to be fully in this gentle time and take time to smell the unexpected roses of circumstance that are blooming just for me. Another synchronicity; a quote (from Jeff Foster) sent in a message from a friend and read by me in the very next moment after watching the video:
Trust the place where you are, the place of ‘no answers yet’, the precious place of not knowing. This place is sacred, for it is 100% life. It is full of life, saturated with life, dripping with life, drenched with life.
Don’t try to rush to the next scene in the movie of ‘me’. Be here, in this scene, Now, the only scene there is.
Now is the place where questions rest, and creative solutions grow.
The clear message of my morning was a collaboration delivered by all sides of myself, for me to hear in this exact moment.
Because these times when we step away, into our own space, away from other peoples’ parties, their busy-ness and stuff, out of the thunder cloud and the grey of the outside world as it is painted, are so divinely orchestrated that they are exactly where we are meant to be. They are not hiding, they are not denial; they are anything but that. More, we are leading the way in, showing the way to the sacred space where the white rose grows and, where we bravely lead, others will surely follow, will step into that divinely feminine space after us and will be grateful we still knew how to find the way there and that we reminded them, that we showed it was ‘allowed’. That, through our very actions, our softly treading footsteps into the secret part of the garden, we demonstrated how its not always about having to be in the heart’s racing pulse of everything that seems to going on at such speed and with such drama all around us that we feel, constantly, like we might be left behind.
Rather, we go where the little girl inside us leads for she still remembers the way there, knows where the white rose always blooms. This is sacred knowledge and it is coming back into the broader consciousness, led by those who already feel it; by the heart. It takes courage, such courage, to go there, to hold steady in the knowing, to not fall back into self-criticism, into measuring against others, feeling the pull back into the death throes of life, the comparison, the harsh expectations, the fear mongering and yet there is another place where none of this counts for anything. Yes, there is always trepidation in those first few steps towards revealing what has been so well guarded, tucked-away, kept precious, of letting others into the inner sanctum of the heart; but, for those of us who still recall the place where the feminine resides its is as though there is literally no option but to be heart-led now, this is where we must reside – and not only in our most secret moments; we must be there constantly, be entirely true to ourselves, and then others will see that about us, more and more, and follow us there.
At once, as deeply personal to me as these lyrics must have been to KB when they were written three decades ago (when I first listened to them as the girl that I was), what they also delivered to me in this moment was as universal as it was timely; a wholly current message for the world. So beautiful to feel this deepest knowing, to have it affirmed by the messenger of myself and to smile at the fact that the early morning half-light revealed yet another rose newly opened in my garden this morning, near-November as it is. Never before have my roses lasted this late into the year and yet the nodding rhythm of this latest bloom, caught up in all that autumn wind and rain beyond the shutters, kept pace with all my typing of this unplanned post, urging me on like a steadfast heart poised to reveal itself, to be itself, to the gentle tempo of itself, come what may.
This video really is a beautiful paring with the lyrics; an exquisite pleasure that I recommend.