Sunday, August 31, 2008

how the light gets in

my day yesterday began with a ride that took me up provo canyon to sundance, then up the alpine loop to the summit and down american fork canyon.
my day yesterday ended with a service beside silver lake at the top of big cottonwood canyon.
a day full of aspen, clean air, stunning views, rushing and resting waters, rocks tumbling down a sheer wall and sprinkling the road as I rode by, cool shade and goosebumps, hot breath from the sun, pine trees by the thousands, deeply beautiful souls, peace, and one perfect poem stanza.

last night liz's friends and family hosted a Light Ceremony, a letting-go ritual, a tribute to her life. I don't want to diminish its beauty and depth by trying to describe it, so I will only say that the gift for me of being there is that I was among over 300 amazing, beautiful, loving, giving souls opening their hearts in Liz's honor.
and that it was Liz's spirit that brought forward this opening.

I feel Liz everywhere, and I know, I know, that she is where she's always wanted to be. not that she didn't love being here, doing the work she did, loving her partner and their three children. but now she is in a place to touch all of us, albeit in a very different way. I know that I will always feel her at the top of big cottonwood canyon, a place she deeply loved. I feel her now, as I sit in my home in sugarhouse, typing and looking out at my foliage in my back yard and the blue sky that filters through. I will feel her when I need a good laugh, when I start to take myself too seriously. I will feel her when I need strength, when I start to weary of the human stressors that cross my path. her spirit will always be available when I need support. for she knew, she knows, what's real and what is not. and all I need do is tap into her spirit, and I will feel true grace.

Liz's sister shared part of a poem, from Leonard Cohen's Stranger Music, that touched me deeply. I will hold on to this, as I think mr. cohen has beautifully described human nature and what we are to do with it:

ring the bells that can ring
forget your perfect offering
there is a crack in everything
that's how the light gets in.

Liz had cracks; I have cracks. we all have cracks.
it is our nature, and it is God's gift to us.
may I always remember that without those cracks, none of us would be able to let the light in and reflect it back to the world.

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