The Winter of Listening ~ David Whyte

The Great Turning


No one but me by the fire,
my hands burning
red in the palms while
the night wind carries
everything away outside.

All this petty worry
while the great cloak
of the sky grows dark
and intense
round every living thing.

All this trying 
to know
who we are
and all this
wanting to know
what we must do.

What is precious
inside us does not
care to be known
by the mind
in ways that diminish
its presence.

What we strive for
in perfection
is not what turns us
to the lit angel
we desire.

What disturbs
and then nourishes
has everything
we need.

What we hate
in ourselves
is what we cannot know
in ourselves but
what is true 
to the pattern
does not need
to be explained.

Inside everyone
is a great shout of joy
waiting to be born…


From ‘The Winter of Listening’
David Whyte : Essentials
Many Rivers Press 2019

Published here with kind permission.

Winter Walk
Photo  © David Whyte
Cassey Compton, Cotswolds.
February 3rd 2019

Header Photo by Michael Niessl on Unsplash