Though I handed over the studio in 2019, having founded it in 2002 and nurturing it’s first 17 years, the final closure was full of diverse feeling for me. The deep sadness at its ending, and the great joy and all it has offered to literally thousands of people over the years. The year for me began with the death of my mother on January 2 and ended with this death. A reminder of the natural necessity and inevitability of cycles. What will come from this dissolution? Who am I now? Who are you? Who are we? I hold these questions, sometimes heavily, sometimes more lightly. This poem has companioned me these last months … does it resonate for you too?
For When People Ask by Rosemerry Wahtola Trommer
I want a word that means
okay and not okay,
more than that: a word that means
devastated and stunned with joy.
I want the word that says
I feel it all all at once.
The heart is not like a songbird
singing only one note at a time,
more like a Tuvan throat singer
able to sing both a drone
two or three harmonics high above it—
a sound, the Tuvans say,
that gives the impression
of wind swirling among rocks.
The heart understands swirl,
how the churning of opposite feelings
weaves through us like an insistent breeze
leads us wordlessly deeper into ourselves,
blesses us with paradox
so we might walk more openly
into this world so rife with devastation,
this world so ripe with joy.