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Merciful Death

I am learning that there is nothing romantic about The Field. It is no placeholder for a cartoonish or fantastical happily ever after, where we all hold hands and sing Zipppity Do Da, or Kumbaya.

It is a place that is as full of the most ravaging & thunderous storms, shape-shifting earthquakes, and flagrant destruction of newborn, as the calm after the storm, the freshness of the quenched earth dripping and steaming up from the warmth of the sun, which has unapologetically been absent, with landscapes flaunting obvious signs of new life.

I step more and more into The Field, and I find the non-essential burning itself away, until I can barely recognize myself. Long straddling a place riddled with want, and a place that begs surrender to ask for nothing--finding the balance mercifully tipping a bit heavier toward the latter.

My hope is that what remains when I fall into surrender, will be the makings of a freedom for which I realize I have not, nor could have truly ever given myself permission.

No, it could have never been so simple.

There had to be a reckoning of vision--to finally stop the madness--the pursuit of Disneyland facades, that give the illusion of magic, but leave you empty and hungry after the partaking. There needed the kind of  attack that kills the disease at the core, not just a half-hazard firing squad--the kind of nuclear blast that brings you to your knees, bleeding out, as cage after cage is revealed, until you are pretty sure you are merely made of cages.

I am learning that freedom isn't something you can grant, not with all the denial that runs in our veins as fear of what amounts to our own denial of our mortality. Rather freedom is something earned, and it comes from what is left when you've stopped playing games with yourself--stopped lying to yourself in the grandest of ways.

When life brings you face to face with who you are for better or for worse, and when you realize you are just who you are, and that that is what you have to work with--no special formula for your completion, no shortcut, just facing the clay that you have to work with, no matter how unsuitable it is for the job.

And yet, can I be honest with you? It feels so much better to just be real with the loss of innocence, the unattainable, because it becomes so incredibly simple, and then the crusade just gets called off.

Eyes cast down, we go home, and we do what needs to be done.

Perhaps The Field is merely a place of rest, and repair from the scourging of our soul as it shakes hands with being human, and finds itself zapped over and over into submission.

And maybe it is here, that we lose the banalities of being nice, the ferocity of being angry, and look up for something new, and find the bud breaking ground, bursting through the concrete we've constructed around our heart, writhing as new life takes root without apology in our heart, using us for nothing but fertile ground to reach the sun, and we have no choice, nor desire, but to let it.

Yes, there is something about being cut to the quick, the rawness and bleeding, watching it use your remains as nourishment for new life that doesn't care if the sorry you that has been suspended in self-pity all her life, dies, because it knows it is a merciful death.

John Green says in his book, The Fault in our Stars, 'Grieving doesn't change us, it reveals us.' And maybe it is good that it does. Maybe we'd never really know ourselves otherwise.


  1. "Facing the clay" Oh, Brooke! I love those words. Yes. Facing and embracing, in a not so mushy way, but in a way that sees what truly is, and, as you said, doesn't judge. It sounds so simple, and by God it is, unless you're a human being. Then it gets complicated.

    I am a field of putty with the potential to be all things, a tree of life in bud, a fertile burial ground. I am as small as my fears and the sprout of all green. I am me standing in the field. Surrendering into putty.

    I love your site and the work you are doing, Brooke. There is such a richness here—the perfect environment for growth.

    "I know that there is no resisting the deep. No pretending to find nourishment in spun sugar," said the girl with large eyes digging holes;)
    I love you!

  2. This post is right on time. The first task in the end-of-winter garden is to cut down, cut back all that is dead, rake away rotted leaves. Out of the dead, ruined field, new life tender and ferocious. Powerful post, Brooke. Thanks you!


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