Walk Around Feeling Like A Leaf

Sometimes when I look at the flowers in my garden I think: “Wow, if I really let myself take in how gorgeous one of them, I’m not sure I could even get up off the ground.” I’m not sure I could move. I’d be so speechless, knocked over by the beauty.

Most of us don’t take it in. We don’t take in our surroundings. We don’t take in the goodness that’s already in our lives. And therefore we never feel like we have enough. Because we’re not taking in what we have.

So, taking it in means taking a moment to look and to see. And to actually take it in with your hands. To take it in and let yourself have it. So take in an orchid for a moment, because it’s a thing of beauty. You take it the way babies use their hands, and you develop those muscles.


I do this so many times a day around my house or outside. I did it yesterday at the beach and this morning outside. Usually I use both hands, and I don’t care who sees me or who thinks I’m really looking ridiculous in the moment. At the beach yesterday, I’m sure there were people who were just wondering: What is that person doing just standing there? But the moon was coming up and the sun was setting and it was so gorgeous I could hardly stand it. So I thought, okay, how about if I just let myself have it?

Do you let yourself have the gorgeousness already in your life? Can you try that for a second? Use your hands. Take it in, and let yourself have it. Just let yourself have beauty because it’s gorgeous. Let your heart break. You don’t need to be ashamed of it: it’s beauty and it’s gorgeous and you deserve it. And why not?

I’m going to end with a poem called “The Art of Disappearing” by Naomi Shihab Nye. And this, to me, is about what we’re talking about.

When they say, ‘Don’t I know you?’. Say ‘No.’
When they invite you to the party, remember what parties are like before answering.
Someone telling you in a loud voice they once wrote a poem.
Greasy sausage balls on a paper plate. Then reply.
If they say, ‘We should get together,’ say ‘Why?’

It’s not that you don’t love them anymore.
You’re trying to remember something too important to forget.
You’re trying to remember something too important to forget.
Trees. The monastery bell at twilight.
Tell them that you have a new project.
It will never be finished.

When someone recognizes you in a grocery store, nod briefly and become a cabbage.
When someone you haven’t seen in ten years appears at the door, don’t start singing him all your new songs.
You will never catch up.

Walk around feeling like a leaf.
Know you could tumble at any second.
Then decide what to do with your time.

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2 responses to “Walk Around Feeling Like A Leaf

  1. Just found the beginning of this poem…love the reminder that when you meet up with old friend, you never get it all in….don’t even try

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