Return of the Light: The Space Before the Beginning


To some these days are known as Imbolc – the mid-point between the solstice & the equinox.  Always makes me think of mid-points in journeys – time to reassess our resources & replenish what is needed. This poem by Galway Kinnell reminds me of how much we need to remember our own loveliness so we can continue and blossom.

‘The bud
stands for all things,
even those things that don’t flower,
for everything flowers, from within, of self-blessing;
though sometimes it is necessary
to reteach a thing its loveliness,
to put a hand on its brow
of the flower
and retell it in words and in touch
it is lovely
until it flowers again from within, of self-blessing.’

                                                                                                             ~Oriah Mountain Dreamer


Today – the mid-point between winter solstice and the spring equinox – feels like the space before the beginning.  Maybe like the ten minutes before a race starts, while milling around still in warm-up sweats, waiting to toe the line.  Maybe like the hours spent in transit when moving away to college for the first time.  Maybe like the eight to ten days after planting tomato seeds, before the seeds send up sprouts into the air.   A bit nervous, but excited to start running.  Unsure about what the next four years will be like, but ready for whatever comes next.   Patiently letting nature take its course and having faith that life will emerge.

We don’t know exactly what this time of celebrating the return of the light will bring with it into our space.  We can only breathe, one breath at a time, one moment at a time, in the space that we have.  We can only look to our own being, to our own essence, to find the right race to run.  We remember that we run purely to feel the wind on our skin, to know the joy in the faces of those we run beside and to project our life energy, our light, into the space we have.  We remember that we are worthy to run beside anyone, just everyone else is worthy to run beside us.  We remember that ours is a race with no winners and no finish line, just individual beacons of light forming a web that stretches across the planet.

In the space before the beginning, as the light returns to this part of the Earth, there is only a knowing that to begin is to continue to be in our own space and to let others be in theirs.  It is to know that our space is a part of everyone else’s and that we depend on them, and they on us.  It is to know that we are equal and that when we honor that knowing, miracles become reality, and reality becomes anything that we can imagine.

We are in the space before the beginning, and it is okay to be here.  But we don’t want to be here forever – in fact, we cannot.  The light returns whether we are ready for it or not.

So in this space, in this return of the light, we remember that more life waits for us when we cross the starting line.  That limitless opportunities and new ways of remaining true to ourselves unfold when we pull up to our new campus.  That immeasurable vibrancy and robust growth emerge when a single seed germinates and propels its being into pure life force.  We know this space, the space before the beginning and the return of the light, because we have been here already.  We are a part of the Earth’s cycles, and we are ready.  We are ready to honor the balance of what is, we lean into our own loveliness, and we welcome the wilds of our imagination to move us into a reality that invites us to bloom.

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