Here we stand, on the edge of the new. Do you feel a little tippy, ready to plunge in? This year I am taking counsel from Pádraig Ó Tuama, whose wonderful In the Shelter begins with the idea of saying, “Hello to here.”
What is the name for the place where you now are? It requires close looking, it requires the dedication of observation and a commitment to truth. To name a place requires us to be in a place. It requires us to resist dreaming of where we should be, and look around where we are.
One reason to love the new year is its blank sheet of paper feeling, the idea that anything is possible. But to step into that wonderful possibility, our feet have to start right here where we are. Hello to here.
And if Here is nowhere close to where we want to be, all the more reason to pause and appreciate this place. It might be a long journey ahead, and we may never pass Here again.
Dear friends, Hello to Here.
May we have courage on our travels to There.
Happy New Year.
* In case you missed our year-end book list, here is the link:
** And here is Rilke’s full quote, which is a mix of wonder plus a caution to not spill too much of the new year’s potential:
And now let us believe in a long year that is given to us, new, untouched, full of things that have never been, full of work that has never been done, full of tasks, claims, and demands; and let us see that we learn to take it without letting fall too much of what it has to bestow upon those who demand of it necessary, serious, and great things.