It seems that I have been lost for the last months as I finish up – our new book – Alabama Studio Design (working title). Between writing (and re-writing) texts, working on the design, and taking some of the pictures, there seems to have been little time for anything other than family, garden and my (other) job as designer and entrepreneur. As I move towards the end of the book, it feels like life is beginning.

Looking at my desk this afternoon, I see a pile of ideas, new books, maps, notes, lists and random objects that I can’t wait to uncover. Lying on top of this pile is an orange slip of paper with a poem that has been sent to me twice in the last few months. I am thinking that this is a good place to start:

The Summer Day
by Mary Oliver

Who made the world?
Who made the swan, and the black bear?
Who made the grasshopper?
This grasshopper, I mean-
the one who has flung herself out of the grass,
the one who is eating sugar out of my hand,
who is moving her jaws back and forth instead of up and down-
who is gazing around with her enormous and complicated eyes.
Now she lifts her pale forearms and thoroughly washes her face.
Now she snaps her wings open, and floats away.
I don’t know exactly what a prayer is.
I do know how to pay attention, how to fall down
into the grass, how to kneel down in the grass,
how to be idle and blessed, how to stroll through the fields,
which is what I have been doing all day.
Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

from House of Light by Mary Oliver

And I ask myself, “What is it I plan to do with this wild and precious life starting today?”

What are your plans?

7 comments on “STARTING TODAY

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  1. Josefina

    That’s beautiful. I don’t know what I plan, but this poem makes me feel like it’s perfectly okay. May be the first time I’ve ever felt that way.

  2. Teresa Madden

    That is beautiful, and wonderful food for thought. I hope you don’t mind that I shared your story with my first graders and their parents on the last day of school. I just wanted them to leave with encouragement to never let anyone tell them that their dreams can’t come true. Follow your passions and never give up on where the love of life leads you. Thanks for being an inspiration to me, and to my small class on this last moment of opportunity that I had to hopefully make a difference in a 7-year old’s life.

  3. Brittany

    today i just tried to be present. while i painted, i painted, while i did yoga, i did yoga, while i spent time with my husband, i spend time with my husband. everything else in that moment can wait.

    another book, you say? oh, i’m excited now! 🙂

  4. Julie Bowersett

    I’ve missed your posts. What a way to break your silence with such beautiful, image-provoking words. I have varied plans for this precious life of mine but one constant remains: the need to work with my hands every second I can steal.

    Looking forward to your new book and your lecture in DC in a few short weeks.

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  6. Julia

    Another book! I’m so excited, I can hardly wait!
    I’ve been working my way through the first two books, and I am having so much fun!