Buried Seeds by Mark Nepo
All the buried seeds
crack open in the dark
the instant they surrender
to a process they can’t see.
This innate surrender
allows everything edible
to break ground
into a life of light
that we call Spring.
As a seed buried in the earth
cannot imagine itself as an orchid or hyacinth,
neither can a heart packed with hurt
imagine itself loved or at peace.
The courage of the seed is that once cracking,
it cracks all the way.
It’s late Winter and especially in the North, we are yearning for Spring—for more sunlight, for more opening, for new growth, inside and outside…
Wintertime offers us the space to surrender, to return to our inner ground, to gestate our bodysoul’s wisdom so that we can soften enough to crack open and be ready for the invitation of another Spring.
Spring is almost here—at least here in Minnesota, the Spring Equinox is almost upon us! Spring Equinox is midway between the longest night of the year, at Winter Solstice, and the longest day of the year, at Summer Solstice. This year, the Spring Equinox occurs at 5:45 pm on Friday, March 20th. On the morning of the Equinox, we will have a solar eclipse with the moon covering up the sun, blocking out up to 98 per cent of its light. And the evening before, the Earth and Moon will be as close together as they possibly can be, giving rise to a so-called Supermoon, but because it’s a New Moon, we will be lucky to see the hint of a very large sliver in the sky.
Here in Minnesota, Spring suddenly blew in for a week so that we are finally consistently above zero and even melted! Even though more seasonal temperatures are coming in now, we are officially dreaming of Spring. Everything that has been underground, that has been composting and preparing for new growth, within and without, is getting ready to break ground into Spring’s new life.
Nature can be our teacher in this process of cracking open. Many plants have been dormant all Winter, hibernating, their energy pulled back into their roots or stored in seeds. Others literally died and returned their fragile plant bodies to the earth, where they mixed with other surrendered plant bodies, and dissolved into the ground becoming compost. Now these plants—both the dormant ones and the dissolved ones are getting ready to regenerate and send forth new growth—sprouts that will turn into plants that might bloom or even bear fruit come Summer and Fall.
We, too, have had a chance to surrender, to return to the ground during Winter, to let ourselves dissolve and re-form. We, too, have been like buried seeds, surrendering to the dark unknown possibility of cracking open. From this darkness, from this openness, deep wisdom can arise, which Spring invites us to put into form in the world.
So, this is the time to get ready to nurture your soon-to-be sprouting seeds. To prepare for the regeneration of your energy, for the sharing of your vision in the world…
What seeds are buried deep within you? What is yearning to come alive in you? What wants to arise from the compost of your life, to be re-formed and lived into this year? What new learning or new growth might sprout from the regenerative compost of your suffering? What has been cracking open, ready to sprout and come into the new life and light of Spring?
Choose one thing you’d like to nourish, to nurture like a new seed, just beginning to reach toward the surface of the earth. How can you fertilize the soil so this new part of you can begin to grow? How will you tend this seedling—what support and nutrients does it need? What practices do you need to put into place to assure mindful, steady growth?
Remember, no matter how dark your Winter has been, no matter how unknowable the new life of Spring feels, there is at least one seed within us that wants to grow and awaken and come into greater and deeper contact with Life, that wants to crack open all the way.
Listen to that. Trust that. Nourish that.
If you’d like some support listening, trusting, and nourishing your seeds, check my calendar and join me.
One thought on “Cracking Open”
Thank you for the Mark Nepo poem and your wake-up call, Katy. Actually that’s my seed–staying awake in my body as I move through the air, walking and breathing deeply.
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