And so it was that two years ago I went into the great unwinding, was rendered out of my old hunting grounds and delivered into something that had been waiting to be attended to from the very beginning. And yes, I did become kin to the seasons, and I did kneel before the wise counsel of winter, and still do, as here she comes again to wrap her wide black cloak around me for the long quarter while the dry leaves of all the things I have loved and lost continue to fall in splendor, each one offering themselves as a sacrifice at the altar of my life.
And yes, I was left bare and humbled and emptied, with nothing left to do but offer myself to the Unmaker and let the knots of my life unspool to the floor, as I turned and reached toward my inner sky. We do not get to choose the wild patterns our scars trace and form as they heal, but we do get to touch them gently afterwards and read them like braille etched on to the landscape of our lives, telling their tales of the paths we chose, and the ones we left behind. For it is in the sharing of our stories, not the holding, that the great tapestry is made.
But first comes the great unraveling, where we are quieted from our striving, and where we learn that in order to be rewoven we must give up all our frantic, futile, and heartrending attempts to thread our own needles in the dark. And if in these times of collapse and chaos, both inner and outer, we can meet that invitation to open and surrender, and crumble into the rich soil of our not knowing, something inside will start to re-imagine and remember, as we are worked back and forth in the night by the hands of the weaver who is weaving us all.
And in the longest of all those long nights we might find ourselves catching sight of something glimmering, the golden thread in the far reaches of the cave, the coin at the bottom of the well, the glint in the dirt under the floorboard, and recognize this as our innermost longing; the flame of our birth song come to sing us back to life, the call and response prayer between the weaver and the one who is woven, the sound of our own singular pulse in the deep universe, that invisible thing that kept carrying us forward all the time we could not carry ourselves.
After Margo Stebbing's "The Mending"
Artwork ~ "Searching for Soulfood" by Lucy Campbell
There comes a time
when the mending is out of our hands.
It falls beyond the reach
of needle and thread,
of determined fixing and worn self help patches,
all manner of effort falls short.
When the unraveling comes
do not be afraid;
the Unmaker stands before
a greater loom where
chrysalises are shed,
tight knots in life unspooled to the floor
the splendor of leaves fall from the trees
returning to the humility of ground
a glint of ebony on the raven’s wing,
as the black thread is shuttled,
back and forth, our questions,
back and forth, crashing wave to shore
rocked by the drum of the heartbeat
lungs empty and fill again,
until the essential nature
of a larger design speaks
quieting us with
the eloquence of stillness.
Simple as a breath,
into the great unwinding we go
we are rendered out of our hunting grounds,
and delivered into something that opens our eyes;
we become kin to the seasons and
kneel before the wise counsel of winter
bare and humbled
reaching toward our inner sky.
~ Margo Stebbing