If you don't ask yourself where the center is, you won't find it.

The New Now is like a stallion turned out on a windy day. He gallops, flings himself through his Universe. Then stops fast, shakes, shudders; 2,000 pounds of momentum takes flight from the beast's body and dissipates like a ghost.

Here, has the pace stopped or is it still in motion, somewhere else, outside our realm? I wager, the latter. Nothing about the New Now is rational - or rationality, like the Now itself, is in the process of redefinition.

We say with a smirk, a shrug of complicity, "it's hurry up and wait". But that is because we are desperate to measure the pace ourselves, to have a hand in every beat of it, we want to mold its passing in order to divine its outcome.

It's when the stallion stops so fast you're liable to be tossed over its hock, that's when you need to get off, go find your center. You think I'm talking about a spiritual retreat, that sutra spot -- fingers lightly touching, your eyes closed... No, that's not what I'm suggesting. I'm not that calm, are you? I can count sheep faster than they can jump. I'm talking about a physical place, your space, where you stand, where you sit. Your center.

The New Now is a time, it is a state of being, and it is a place. Build it around you and go there to wait. Stallions stop short, they absorb the air and the sound and the sense, then they start moving again. They hurry up, and wait.

I Ask You
Billy Collins, Poet Laureate

What scene would I want to be enveloped in
more than this one,
an ordinary night at the kitchen table,
floral wallpaper pressing in,
white cabinets full of glass,
the telephone silent,
a pen tilted back in my hand?

It gives me time to think
about all that is going on outside--
leaves gathering in corners,
lichen greening the high grey rocks,
while over the dunes the world sails on,
huge, ocean-going, history bubbling in its wake.

But beyond this table
there is nothing that I need,
not even a job that would allow me to row to work,
or a coffee-colored Aston Martin DB4
with cracked green leather seats.

No, it's all here,
the clear ovals of a glass of water,
a small crate of oranges, a book on Stalin,
not to mention the odd snarling fish
in a frame on the wall,
and the way these three candles--
each a different height--
are singing in perfect harmony.

So forgive me
if I lower my head now and listen
to the short bass candle as he takes a solo
while my heart
thrums under my shirt--
frog at the edge of a pond--
and my thoughts fly off to a province
made of one enormous sky
and about a million empty branches.


Kerry@yourstartupstory.com said...

Thanks for an amazing and candid reflection of The New Now. The analogy is too real and make me think: "Should I even bother to get back on the Stallion...just to hurry up and wait?"

Not to sound depressing, but it sucks more and more energy from the center each time our world is rocked and we're forced to regroup.

Anmarie said...

Charlotte, that was simply beautiful. Thank you.