once you were in springtime
and everything was new.
your slopes cloaked in bursting green,
birdsong in the branches.
you did not know that you were a mountain
only that hope was growing everywhere,
pushing through the soil,
lighting up your lengthening days
and bringing you clear nights, full
of stars and wonder.
summer came, and you fell in love
with the drowsy bees drifting between flowers,
the sun smiling bright and long
on your peaks and valleys.
you heard them say that you were beautiful
and you believed them then,
believed that this was your forever.
summer turned to autumn;
you could not understand
why your trees were briefly cloaked
in glorious flaming colour
only to be stripped, little by little,
of every last leaf.
your skies darkened,
rain began to fall.
uncertainty consumed you:
everything you loved was leaving,
that vibrant beauty fading
to greys and browns, grass becoming mud.
you could not look at yourself,
seeing nothing but loss.
you faced the winter:
those that saw you then
called you dark, brooding,
and your heart broke.
you believed that you were dying:
cloaked in snow, your rivers all but ice,
the sun barely lighting the horizon
before plunging you back
into a deeper dark
than you had ever known.
you did not realise that
spring would come again,
your rivers thaw, and streams
run down your face
as you finally released the sorrow
you’d held frozen in your heart.
life would return, and so would hope,
dandelions exploding in the greenest grass,
and everything once more
at last you learned that you are the mountain.
now you know the seasons,
they may batter you
or touch you softly
but they are not you,
and they cannot change
who you are.
through it all the mountain sits:
tall as ever, grounded in the earth itself.
whether they see you as beautiful or bitter,
welcoming or lost in fog,
the serenity held deep within your core
will always remain,
your life will be dark, and
it will fill you with colour,
whip you with harsh winds,
caress you with sunbeams.
you are still yourself:
you are still the mountain.
inspired by The Mountain Meditation, by Jon Kabat-Zin (and adapted by many others).
“Letting it be, just as it is... an unwavering stillness in the face of all that changes in your life- over seconds, and hours, and years.”
and you, who have not yet realised that you are a mountain. I promise you will.