“Hope is a thing with feathers” — Emily Dickinson

Feathers14Photo by Jim Champion

I came across a lovely poem today when my friend, Jeanne, asked me to read her some poetry via Skype.  She is recovering from surgery and needed me to do most the talking. I feel terrible for her! After reading the poem I thought of how fitting it is for today and why I have an insatiable love for poetry. Poetry is the language of the soul, and oftentimes, discovering the right one at the right time can make you feel like someone actually gets you in that moment. That you are not alone in your crusade. Last night, after a long conversation, I walked away feeling confident and believing that if I can trust in anything, it is that everything will be as it should be. Why do we fight to erase the writing on the wall when it is so clear it’s there for a purpose…to reveal something poignant that we perhaps didn’t want to hear or see. We try to mix up the letters hoping they will scramble into exactly what we want them to say. In letting go and choosing to accept what is, we empower ourselves. I went to sleep feeling confident and thankful for everyone in my life. Today, I came across this poem and thought again about last night. Perhaps it isn’t confidence I should be walking away with- perhaps it’s hope – and what a beautiful thing hope is. Something that, as Dickinson says, we can have an abundance of and it will never ask for anything in return – not even a crumb. Choosing a word such as hope, over confidence, connects me to people all over the world – it is everywhere and in everyone. It reminds me that we all carry feathers of hope within us – big and small- and that regardless of the outcome, everything will be okay.

“Hope” is the thing with feathers
Emily Dickinson

“Hope” is the thing with feathers—
That perches in the soul—
And sings the tune without the words—
And never stops—at all—

And sweetest—in the Gale—is heard—
And sore must be the storm—
That could abash the little Bird
That kept so many warm—

I’ve heard it in the chillest land—
And on the strangest Sea—
Yet, never, in Extremity,
It asked a crumb—of Me.


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