As You Be What You Will Be. As You Go Where You Will Go.

I sat, and as I breathed, I looked around inside my head. And in there, there were dark masses. Masses I had created, formed, sculpted, thought into life. Some of them were jagged, some of them too hot to touch, some of them now smoothed through the tossing in my mind’s waves but heavy nevertheless. I looked at these dark masses and I said …

“It is time”

I said to the accumulation of anger, formed from the frustrating exchanges. That cooling lava of irritation, of injustice and unexpressed indignation. With steam still rising from its surface … 

“It is time”

I said to that boulder of sadness, about that sad thing, the thing that will always be sad but is taking up space I now need back …

“It is time”

I said to the shame, those stinging leaves of derision, those thorns of remorse, that I cultivated and watered with bitter tears …

“It is time”

I did not want to disrespect these monuments of my making. They deserved better than that. After all, I had put my energy and time into them, I had nurtured and grown them from tiny seeds. But they were no longer serving me well. They made my head heavy, so it was time to let them go.

And so, in order to honour these items, I sat on the banks of the River of Thought. I looked at the water as it flowed and said … “It is time I let you go”. And so, I put out on the blanket in front of me, beautiful hand made paper, with blossoms pressed into its grain. There was paper of many different colours and textures. I smoothed it with my hands and felt its warmth under the morning sun. And next to this paper I layed ribbons. Many different ribbons, that represented different times, and challenges, and treasures and memories.

I looked inside my head, and one by one I took in my hands each mass sitting there and I said to it … “It is time”. I took each one by one, and I layed it gently on a sheet of beautiful paper. I packaged up compassion and understanding for all those involved. I packaged up my feelings of anger and injustice. I packaged up the confusion, the upset. I carefully wrapped ribbons around the worry. I put the sleeplessness in a box and wished it rest. I wrapped it all with beautiful pressed paper and pretty ribbons appropriate to their nature. I made sure they were secure, and assured them I understood why they had come and that I was not rejecting them, just releasing them to where they now would go.

Once this labour was complete, I walked to the shore where a small sail boat was waiting and, with careful fingers, I placed each package in the boat. I thanked them for their offerings, their worked-hard-for wisdom, their potent protection, their determined defiance. And then I wished the boat and its cargo well, and bid it go where it would go. I could no longer carry those packages with me (though I appreciated that they had worth and had come from truth).

I blew gently, warm air, and care and love across those bright paper sails. I wished them safety on their journey wherever they may go. They will sail off without me, and I without them. And we will all remember that we knew each other once, and be thankful for what our acquaintance taught us.

The boat moved off into the centre of the River of Thought, taken by the current. I watched as the boat and its cargo of cares floated away, to be what they must be, to go where they must go. Slightly saddened, but grateful that my head felt much lighter and that I too could now be what I must be, and now go where I must go, without their weight, without their words, without obscuring my view of what was on the far bank of the river.

And this week, when again I sat, and I breathed, and I looked inside my head? There were no giant masses to be seen, but I did spot some small scrawlings on the walls. I noticed these and touched them with my fingers. I took note of the loops and lines of each word and I greeted them as new, and I said …

“I welcome these words you have offered me, but today I will let you go also”.

So again, I sat down on my blanket by the river of my thoughts, and I took a beautiful piece of hand pressed paper, with rose petals pressed into its grain. And I took a beautiful gold fountain pen and a pot of oil-dark ink, and very carefully, with thought and care and attention to detail, I wrote each of the words and phrases and thoughts I had found in my mind that day. I carefully recreated each line, with love, with attention. And once I had completed the task, I thanked each word for its wisdom, I acknowledged each worry for having spent time with me, and assured them I had taken note – but with gentle words told each and every one …

“It is time to let you go”.

And so with delicate hands I folder that piece of beautiful hand pressed paper, and smoothed each edge and neatly folded again, until I had created a paper boat, with delicate calligraphy inside and out, and beautiful rose petals scattered amongst the words.

And so, I walked to the river’s shore, and I gently placed the boat on the water. It bobbed in front of me, and I inhaled the bright morning air, and I exhaled love, into the paper sail of the boat, and it gently moved off into the current, to join the other thoughts, and the other worries, as they went where they would go, to be what they would be. And it lightly drifted with them, as I lightly drifted back to my blanket.

And there I sat, watching my boat of thoughts, and worries, of cares and concerns, as the current took it and left me here, on the beautiful shore, to be what I will be, to go where I will go. As I just gently close my eyes, and I breathe in the spring air, and feel the warming sun on my face, and I smile, and I wish my thoughts well on their journey elsewhere, as I rest before I return to my own.


Copyright © 2018 · Forty and Everything After


Hoodlums & Heroes

And so I suddenly stopped, in the middle of the street, and in that instant I saw it all. The illusion that we all occupy. That busy street, full of people and puddles and pictures we believe into reality. Who are all these humans? Who are these actors, these holograms? Who are the hoodlums, and who the heroes? Who amongst them will have drama, who trauma, who triumph?

And I wish for a moment I could step off set, consult the script, see it all from behind the lens. Pause the action and place myself at some other moment, perhaps in some other street, where would that illusion lead me?Read More »


It is a spiritual colour he says

The colour of the Crown Chakra 

The height of your self knowledge


Connection to a higher power

And that I can appreciate

But to me it is more

To me it is the colour of youth

Of freedom

Of ‘Me’dom

Of seeking and speaking your truth

It is the colour of magical skies

Of eyes, those eyes, oh those eyes!

It is the colour of my heart

That terminally conditioned part

The part that fell apart

It is the colour of pain

And a certain sort of rain

And a broken heart again

It is the colour of April snow

And I will not let it go


Copyright © 2018 · Forty and Everything After

This Is Not My Pot

This week I found myself having to justify the dichotomy between what I do to feed my bank account and the things I do outside of work which feed my soul. And this was with a person who has already had to work hard to make the thing they are passionate about their job.  So they really should know better than to assume that what someone does in their day to day to make money automatically defines who they are as a human being.

But I guess we are all guilty of this on occasion. We probably all have asked a new acquaintance “So what do you do?”, and then we layer all sorts of assumptions on them as a person, based entirely on their response – when really “What matters to you?” would be a far more revealing and insiquestion. If the person in question is incredibly lucky or has always had a laser-beam focus on achieving their dream career, the answers to those two questions may align. But more often than not they won’t.Read More »

Conversation With A Tortoise – Part II

T & Me – On Faith And Freedom

Me: It is my last morning. And I have been having the most miserable time. Here I am, sitting on this seat for the final time, crying my heart out. Then I hear some rustling and I think to myself …

“That can’t be another tortoise can it?
On my last morning –
As I saw one on the first.
That would be quite something.”

So, I wander over to the fence where I had seen you before and, after a quick scour on my side of the fence, I spot you. On the other side of the fence! Sitting in the sunshine, looking calm and content. Read More »

Conversation With A Tortoise – Part I

First Encounter With An Unlikely Spirit Animal

Me: So, I came to this seat on that first morning, to spend a little quiet time, to watch the butterflies and the paragliders floating by. It was beautiful, serene, the closest to Heaven I had ever felt. And then you came along. My first wild tortoise. I could hear scuffling in the undergrowth. For some time I heard it, but didn’t know it was you. Eventually I had to go and explore and there you were. My heart filled up with joy to see you.

I thought …

“This is perfect.
Look at who I have found.
How lucky am I”

Read More »