Nothing is so fatiguing as the eternal hanging on of an uncompleted task. ~William James

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

A Cast of Thousands, Each One Significant

Some of us are old enough to remember the heart-stopping daffodil scene from Dr. Zhivago;  spring, and life, returning after the ravages of the Siberian winter and war.  The artful cinematography drew the eye into the multitudes of blossoms, the profusion of glorious yellow, to a symphonic backdrop.  After what Yuri and his loves and his countrymen had been through, only this surfeit of daffodils would suffice.  

The scene came back to me this morning as I contemplated my fear of redundancy, and of being derivative.  This fear overtakes me especially in bookstores, and libraries, where I am surrounded by the words of others.  I encounter it, too, when confronted with the zillions of blogs dealing with issues of procrastination and productivity.  I know that I am not alone in the feeling that my little creations don't much matter against the scale of all that has been written.   

But if I look to the daffodils, I see that there is room for all that each of us can be, and make. We don't ask each individual flower to justify its blooming.  And we rejoice that when each one fades, there will eventually be others to gladden us.  

So if others write, and have written, and will write, it means nothing to the value of my work.  And I am not off the hook, after all.  My particular life can only be nurtured or neglected by me, for my own reasons.  And it is worth what it is worth.

In this season of underground regeneration, I will work on trusting that we are heading toward the light, that growth will occur, and that our individual beauty is enough. 

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