This poem by Derek Walcott holds a special place in my heart, for it arrived in my life when I needed it most. Synchronicity, perhaps?
Anyway when I read it, tears streamed down my face. Tears of pain and anguish…then, I knew not why.
I do know now. This poem of self-love and acceptance, of embracing all aspects of one’s self especially those which have been dismissed, disregarded, rejected… and seeing the beauty of the whole ‘I’. There is no need to wait for another, I am enough.
I have no tips or pointers, no ‘how-to’ guide on how anyone can go about this journey of love and acceptance. I am still on the journey.
Yet I wish for each one of us to walk this road, no matter how difficult because each one of Us is beautiful and that is worth fighting for. Pay attention for when the opportunity arrives, beckoning you to step on. Ask yourself: is this my opportunity to discover, forgive and embrace myself wholly?
Take a deep breath… here is the poem.
Love after Love
By Derek Walcott
The time will come
when, with elation
you will greet yourself arriving
at your own door, in your own mirror
and each will smile at the other’s welcome,
and say, sit here. Eat.
You will love again the stranger who was your self.
Give wine. Give bread. Give back your heart
to itself, to the stranger who has loved you
all your life, whom you ignored
for another, who knows you by heart.
Take down the love letters from the bookshelf,
the photographs, the desperate notes,
peel your own image from the mirror.
Sit. Feast on your life.