Spirit of Hope

Visionary Sacred Art By Shiloh Sophia McCloud, Sacred Art By Women

The Spirit of Hope

It is Spring Eve, she said to all the Doubts.
Gather around! All of you.

One by one, she called their names aloud:
Fear…Neglect…Sadness…Guilt…Worry…
Lack…Shame…Carelessness…Overdoing…
Like little mice in a fairy tale gone wrong
they congregated at the hem of her garment.
With kindness and fierceness in her voice,
She continued to call on all that prevents:
Gather around! All of you!
Non-Action…Blame…Regret…Cold Heart…
Envy…Judgment…Greed..Malice…
and you too, yes you! Mediocrity. Cynicism.
and Just Joking. And you!
Unwilling to change. Unwilling to look.
Unwilling to see what is needed.
Unwilling to Hope.

It is nighttime and the fireflies
are the only thing lighting the room,
and when all the parts of all of these
were gathered at the feet of the Blessed Mother,
this is what she said:

It is Spring Eve, and you all know what that means.
As I speak these words, the Spirit of Hope
is being renewed.  All of you have your part
in the Great Way of how all things work:
To alert us and teach us – to guard us and to warn us –
to remind us – to get us to pay attention –
to choose differently and to overcome.
And for this, I thank you.
However, in any given situation, once your part is done –
your presence is no longer needed,
nor does it serve.

Now, I am calling forth your elder twin cousins:
Old Patterns! Come! and Not Enough! Come!
With a swirl of dust they came in.
The chatter of all the others increased,
getting louder and louder and…
QUIET!  Everyone!
This is how people feel when you are all in the room!
The rooms of their hearts and minds!
They cannot even hear themselves think.
Hearing my voice is even harder.
Because you are all so demanding.

My Children try everything to quiet you.
Prayer, therapy, anger management, workshops,
spells, potions, mantras, self help books, doctors, drugs,
television and escapism of every kind.

Everything! All to try to quiet you
so they can be at peace with themselves
and the uncertainty of all things.

But it is their job to do the work! shouted Blame.
They have too much baggage to get started, quipped Non-Action.
They cannot do it! exclaimed Fear.
Whatever, muttered Mediocrity, with a shrug.
I’m not going anywhere, said Old Patterns nonchalantly.

ENOUGH!  Silence! ALL of you are here to serve,
not to be served. And it just so happens
that you are not in charge. At all.
Those gathered began to cower.

I declare the First Day of Spring to be forever more
dedicated to the SPIRIT of HOPE.
I declare the First Day of Spring to be forever more
presided over by the POWER of LOVE.
Those gathered began to dissolve.
And then she released her decree.

I do hereby decree:
CREATIVITY shall illumine our minds and hearts
to choose powerfully, on our own behalf,
the way of being that enables us to live the most vital life.
CREATIVITY shall reign as the antidote
to all patterns of thinking that do not serve.
CREATIVITY focused with the intention of creating wellness
will inform us about the highest good of all.
CREATIVITY!

By the time she finished speaking the last word
there was nothing left but a tiny pile of sparkles and dust
in the middle of her kitchen floor.
She got out the Great Broom of her Grandmother
that her Grandfather had made
for just such an occasion and she swept the tiny pile
into her solid gold dustpan.
She opened the kitchen window, and with a great breath
she blew the contents out the window.

They swirled up to make their own constellation
and spiraled into the cosmos.
She called that configuration What Was.
And she set the Seven Sisters to watch over them.

Then she sat back in her rocker
with a cup of rose petal and jasmine tea
in the newly created stillness of What Was,
her silver cat, Jupiter curled at her feet.
And she meditated upon What Was To Come.

She knew that Creativity would do the trick.
It always does. She mused.
In our soul resides the spark of the creative fire
who’s activity, when tended, will light the path.
And one does not have to be an artist,
to do this creative work of Banishing the Doubts.
But if one will choose to use the tool of creativity
as the approach to the work of being well—
progress happens! We gain access
to our own inner resources and reasoning.
And that is connected with
the Wisdom of the Great Creative One,
The Creator.
Then the choices we make are empowering.

We must all learn to deal with these influences-
no matter what one calls them-that distract, and accuse.
We must learn to banish them.
We must learn to practice wellness as a way of being.

Gathering her turquoise shawl
around her hair and shoulders
in the quickening dawn she says,
It is my job
to keep those influences that harm
as far away from my children as possible,
and to provide them the tools to do the work with me.
Tools like Faith. Practice. Wisdom. Study. Art Making.
Song and Dance. Hope and Creativity.
She lights a candle for her night watch,
going over in her mind and heart the week ahead,
always mixed with the pain of Death,
and with the joy of yet New Life.
Then there is the power of the ritual
of observing her Son’s journey –
it’s parallels and consequences
in the physical and spiritual lives of her other children.

So much left to be resolved.
So much that just cannot be explained or understood.
Still, New Life continues and flourishes.
That is what her Son brings. Resurrection of the body and spirt.
Life is filled with the mystery of how it works together for good.
Death and New Life. Side by side.
Sorrow and Joy. Despair and Hope.

She wants her children to know
that New Life is possible!
And, no matter how bleak it might look,
it is happening every second.
She wants her children to know
that they do not have to understand everything
in order to overcome.
The Creator is always with every single one of you
she says.

She walks into her garden – smelling dew and dawn.
Daffodil, Narcissus, Hyacinth, Red Rose, Lily, ah, the Star Gazer.
The Sun is about to get up. It’s first slim rays glimmer
through the cherry blossoms and cast light on her hands.
She looks at her hands,
appreciating them for all their handiwork.
That white robin flies to her window sill, and watches her.
She raises her arms and opens her palms to the sky.
Her heart flame illuminates the dawn.
She lifts up her voice.

COME RENEWAL! COME FORGIVENESS!
COME All YE FAITHFUL! COME HEALING!
COME BLESSINGS! COME NEW LIFE!
GRATITUDE, COME!

At the sound of her voice
all over the world
the tulips poke up their heads.
Little lambs, saying their little baaaaah,
stumble to their feet.
Birds begin their chorus of song.
Whales send up flurries of sea water.
Buds break open.
Children begin stirring….

COME SPIRIT of HOPE!
She calls into the gold pink morning light.
And she feels that all is well.

She returns to her kitchen
and hears the stirrings of her beloved,
she pours his cup of coffee.

Good Morning My Beloved! Happy Spring!
They smile and kiss one another.
She puts honey and cream in the big white mug of coffee.
As they sit around the kitchen table, he says
We have such a busy week ahead! (Holy Week)
The whole kitchen and the whole earth, and you, are glowing!
I can see that you have already gotten us off to a mighty start!
Oh yes, she replies, smiling. Oh yes.

The Spirit of Hope – Shiloh Sophia McCloud ©2008