Living on One’s Right Path: Sing Your Song (poem)



Michael Meade says that our destiny is like an arc and our lives are meant to follow that arc.  When we are not following it, we feel off-center, something isn’t right, something is missing.  Sometimes it feels like one’s life has gone awry when we’re not following this arc and it can lead to substance abuse, depression, outbursts of anger, and deep despair.  When we are following this destiny, somehow our lives feel right.  Things often seem to flow and we may notice that, although we are encountering challenges and difficulties, there is an underlying contentment that speaks to the sense of living on one’s right path.

When we are following this arc of destiny, we sense a rhythm to life.  It can even be a sound.  Words can express what this rhythm is.  It can show up in verse that conveys the essence one carries into this world.  These words can be called a poem, a prayer, or a song.  We think of it as a song that must be sung, and often, to keep in touch with the essence of who we are.

We will gather this Friday with the men who joined us in retreat in March of this year to celebrate their individual songs and the community to which they belong.

This poem by Richard Palmer speaks to the importance, not only to the individual but also to the community, of singing one’s song.




You cannot belong here

until you are known

You cannot be known here

until your watermelon heart

splits open

and the blood red juice

and the little black seeds

pour upon the earth


It is the song

of your broken-open heart

that nourishes and seeds

the dream of the village


Sing your song!

Sing your song!

Oh brothers of the heart!

The broken-open heart!

Sing your song!

Sing it loud!

So our sons and daughters may find their own song



and the village can dance again!


Everything wants to dance!

Everything wants to dance!

Mockingbirds, morning glories, mustard blooms,

one legged chickens, mollusks, moles,

and the red dust


Everything wants to dance!

Everything wants to dance!

when men sing their songs

from their broken-open hearts


~ Richard Palmer


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