Ravaged, cut, split, torn,
Growing heather, rushes, bushes, thorn.
Lakes and rivers without boundary,
Spilling into a vessel which can hold no more.
Patches and tufts of green misplaced,
Hold miserable animals wishing themselves elsewhere.
Driving, wetting, cruel mists and sheet rain,
Assuring a long hard winter before the next fine day.
Promising lower land will sleep dead underwater.
The men who pull and drag,
Life, rocks, clay and whins bush,
Suffer an eternity of forcing and cursing.
Trying to make land…
Instead of making time.
I wrote this poem not because I felt I could write poetry of any great merit – but because I had to. It was written at a time when I was attempting to make sense of my world as I experienced it, to reconcile with dark memories from the past and acknowledge my fears and anger at the time of writing. As I look back and reflect on the poem, I see my harsh projections of anxiety, negativity and anger at that time. Thankfully when it comes to exploration of a mindful manner, nature has an infinite holding capacity. From a train window travelling through the west of Ireland in 2010, I became deeply aware of field after wet waterlogged field, passing in my gaze. The fields seemed to invite me to explore my own busy, troubled and frightened self at a deep level – ‘to find Jung’s gold in the shadows’ as it were. And for too long I had mined a lot of ‘fool’s gold’ – but I now felt more ready to look for the real thing.
Self analysis, self care and ongoing reflection is paramount for all counselling psychotherapists in order to provide a kind and therapeutically effective space for their clients. Those wet fields and bogs of Connaught supported and held me as I wrote, inspiring and encouraging me to accept that the meaningful courage and strength I sought was accessible within my very being. Ecopsychology and Ecotherapy at work.
‘We do not see things as they are we see them as we are’ Talmud