“Now I Become Myself” by May Sarton
Now I become myself. It's taken
Time, many years and places;
I have been dissolved and shaken,
Worn other people's faces,
Run madly, as if Time were there,
Terribly old, crying a warning,
"Hurry, you will be dead before--"
(What? Before you reach the morning?
Or the end of the poem is clear?
Or love safe in the walled city?)
Now to stand still, to be here,
Feel my own weight and density!
The black shadow on the paper
Is my hand; the shadow of a word
As thought shapes the shaper
Falls heavy on the page, is heard.
All fuses now, falls into place
From wish to action, word to silence,
My work, my love, my time, my face
Gathered into one intense
Gesture of growing like a plant.
As slowly as the ripening fruit
Fertile, detached, and always spent,
Falls but does not exhaust the root,
So all the poem is, can give,
Grows in me to become the song,
Made so and rooted by love.
Now there is time and Time is young.
O, in this single hour I live
All of myself and do not move.
I, the pursued, who madly ran,
Stand still, stand still, and stop the sun! (from http://www.breakoutofthebox.com/now.htm)
What connections can you make between identity, integrity, the undivided heart, and the message of the poem?
This poem emphasizes the need for people to take time to relax, to meditate, and not be worried about the stress and pressures of their busy lives. There are so many responsibilities in our lives, in my life. I tend to stress out more than I need to because I have high standards for myself and I want to do things as perfect as I can. However, being a student teacher, going to school full time, and all of my other family duties can tend to be overwhelming and it's hard to see past all of the things that HAVE to get done (or get paid). I know this poem also discusses how one should take time to be still and discover who they are as a person. Take time to regain your focus and look at the important things-such as leaning on God for peace. That is where we find out how we are personally able to conquer the pressures of our fulfilling our duties. We can't let stress and the world's peer pressure to "do more, get it done, and hurry up to do more" get in our way of realizing we are who God made us to be and we will get to where we need to be with his help. To "wear other people's faces" and attempt to become who you are not does not help you become what God intended you to be. Everyone has their gifts and talents, that is what God wants us to do. He said he will never give us anything that we cannot handle...with His help. I think it's important to remember that we must not try to do things without him because we will fail, we will become stressed. This is so much easier said than done. I am at that breaking point right now. I have about a month and a half before I begin to go on the hunt for a new job and finally finish school. It's been a long journey and I've almost given up several times because I didn't think I could find the time or money to continue, but somehow I always manage to make it. I know I am doing the right thing because I know that teaching is what God has called me to do. I just have to keep going, but I must not forget to keep pausing and relflecting