Hope – a meditation

A beacon of hope


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.

Emily Dickinson – Hope

After I accepted my powerlessness over my loved one's alcoholism, I had to find a new meaning for hope. I could no longer say “I hope for sobriety”, because that would set up an expectation. I had no way of assuring that expectation would be met, and so I would again find myself descending into the pit of despair. What hope came to mean for me, in those days, was that there was a possibility of change, not an expectation of change. This hope helped to sustain me. It “perched in my soul” and “sang the tune … sweetest in the gale”.

A meditation for December 19, 2012.


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