For Longing — John O’Donohue

I used this poem recently, at the beginning of a World Cafe, that was shaped to focus on awareness of norms (internal and external), desired departure from such norms, and desired movement toward what has the energy of calling in life and in work.

It’s a poem that I love, for the way that it points me / us toward the deeper colors of longing. Much like this maple tree with brilliant sunlit yellow, last week at the Fire & Water Leadership Cohort.



For Longing
John O’Donohue
blessed be the longing that brought you here
and quickens your soul with wonder.

may you have the courage to listen to the voice of desire
that disturbs you when you have settled for something safe.

may you have the wisdom to enter generously into your own unease
to discover the new direction your longing wants you to take.

may the forms of your belonging – in love, creativity, and friendship –
be equal to the grandeur and the call of your soul.

may the one you long for long for you.
may your dreams gradually reveal the destination of your desire.

may a secret providence guide your thought and nurture your feeling.

may your mind inhabit your life with the sureness
with which your body inhabits the world.

may your heart never be haunted by ghost-structures of old damage.

may you come to accept your longing as divine urgency.
may you know the urgency with which God longs for you.


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