david whyte

david whyte bw

intro’d to David as Jennifer shared his poem below in her end of 2013 post.

this part – especially resonating… whyte plan/live law:

david whyte quote

What to Remember When Waking
By David Whyte

In that first hardly noticed moment in which you wake,
coming back to this life from the other
more secret, moveable and frighteningly honest world
where everything began,
there is a small opening into the new day
which closes the moment you begin your plans.

What you can plan is too small for you to live.
What you can live wholeheartedly will make plans enough
for the vitality hidden in your sleep.

To be human is to become visible
while carrying what is hidden as a gift to others.
To remember the other world in this world
is to live in your true inheritance.

You are not a troubled guest on this earth,
you are not an accident amidst other accidents
you were invited from another and greater night
than the one from which you have just emerged.

Now, looking through the slanting light of the morning window
toward the mountain presence of everything that can be
what urgency calls you to your one love?
What shape waits in the seed of you
to grow and spread its branches
against a future sky?

Is it waiting in the fertile sea?
In the trees beyond the house?
In the life you can imagine for yourself?
In the open and lovely white page on the writing desk?


find/follow David:

wikipedia small

his site:

david whyte site

april 2015 – Maria on David’s latest book




shared  on fb by sandy

“Hiding done properly is the internal faithful promise for a proper future emergence, as embryos, as children or even as emerging adults in retreat from the names that have caught us and imprisoned us, often in ways where we have been too easily seen and too easily named……

Hiding is creative, necessary and beautifully subversive of outside interference and control. Hiding leaves life to itself, to become more of itself. Hiding is the radical independence necessary for our emergence into the light of a proper human future.”


when leaving becomes arriving – via Maria


One of the difficulties of leaving a relationship is not so much, at the end, leaving the person themselves — because, by that time, you’re ready to go; what’s difficult is leaving the dreams that you shared together.


Sometimes everything
has to be
inscribed across
the heavens

so you can find
the one line
already written
inside you.

a nother way – so we can hear what’s already in us..


on being interview – the conversational nature of reality:


underlying meaning of everyday words.. book. the heart aroused..

we don’t get to choose so often between things we hop we can choose between

4 min – i felt abducted by poetry – language that adults had written who had not forgotten the primary visions/insights of childhood

6 min – i went back into poetry because i felt like sci language wasn’t precise enough to describe the experience i had in the galapagos… science is always trying to remove the i.. but i was interested in the way the i deepened the more you paid attention… because i was in deeply attentive state.. i began to realize my identity depended not on any beliefs i had but on how much attention i was paying to things that were other than myself.. and that as you deepen this intentionality /intention.. you start to broaden your own sense of presence..

7 min – the only place things were actually real were at this frontier between what you think is you and what you think is not you.. what ever you desire of world will not come to pass as you like it.. and what the wrold desires of you will aslo not come to pass.. what actually occurs is this meeting.. this frontier.. but what is strange is how much time people spend away from that frontier… that’s waiting for them.. if they hold the conversation at that frontier level… half of what’s about to occur… is unknown…

8 min – john o donoahue – radical letting alone of yourself and the world..letting world speak in its own voice.. and letting this deeper sense of you speak

deeper discipline of poetry overhearing yourself say things you didn’t want to know…

10 min – (recite) everything is waiting for you

11 min – alertness is the hidden discipline of familiarity

14 min – the more you’re here.. and the more you’re alive. the more you realize you are mortal… will you become a full citizen of vulnerability..

16 min – loss – like falling in love.. but falling into grief… then… you finally touch the ground.. they were holding for you..

18 min – the thing about the past is.. it’s not the past.. it’s right here in this room/convo – irish

another illusion.. that we can take a sincere path in life w/o having our heart broken

21 mi – the language we have in that world is not large enough for the territory before us

23 min – corp – from corpus – a group trying to do something they can’t do on their own

all of us have this inherited convo inside… a form of youthfulness that fits in every part of our lives… the revelation and discovery… the shape of your own absence…

25 min – innocence is away to be found by the world… not a naivety… maturity is not just realizing mortality.. but also realizing rest of civilization might be relieved to let you go.. make way for someone else… the more generous you are the more that circle extends…

28 min – poetry is language against which you have no defenses.. otherwise it’s prose…… that moment in convo where you have to have other understand… have to say it in such a way that it’s heard fully… but with the intimacy of care and understanding… can also hear it in the marital argument…

30 min – when visible.. can be seen.. can be touched.. can be hurt..

31 min – vulnerability is not a weakness.. or something we can arrange to do w/o… the underlying ever present undercurrent of our natural state… in refusing vulnerability.. we refuse help needed at every turn… only choice we have is how we inhabit our vulnerability… as generous citizens of loss…

33 min – rest is the convo between what we love to do and how we love to be..

34 min – dance between aloneness and belonging… if you can touch that sense of aloneness.. you can live with anyone….

a and a

35 min – sweet darkenss… (poem)

when your eyes are tired.. the world is tired also… the world was made to be free in.. give up all other worlds.. to get to the world to which you belong…

..sometimes it takes darkness and the sweet confinement of your aloneness to learn anything or anyone that does not bring you alive is too small for you

or rather.. needs to be woke themselves… the need for another way to live… for blank’s sake… ie: no one is too small.. just not woke

38 min – human genius lies in the geography of the body and its convo w the world…  in ancient world… genius used with places… loci – spirit of the place…  so your genius is the way everything is met in you


genius is not something i’m going to get to by hard work.. it’s the innate thing in me that makes me want to do the hard work..

42 min – a beautiful question shapes a beautiful mind.. esp in very unbeautiful moments… the asking… not the answering… finding convos leading you

43 min – this waited silence behind each question… .. this intrepidation… none of us really feel we deserve our happiness..

44 min – being human – only part of creation that can refuse to be ourselves… healing about world is that it’s just itself… we can refuse to be ourselves.. be afraid to be who we are.. put a mask over ourselves… then we can forget we are refusing to be ourselves… so.. a quality.. is our measure of reluctance to be here… tasking the single effort your taking to not want to be here… all the ways..

47 min – to embody your reluctance .. and allow it to change to something else.. by feeling it fully…

working together (recite) – the visible and the invisible…


via Jerry fb share

How does this beautiful TEDx talk by poet David Whyte have only 852 views?

3 min – put down the weight of your aloneness and ease into the conversation..t

2 convos

6 min – where all those edges meet.. you get this astonishing conversation

9 min – path maker.. there is no path.. you make the path by walking..t

10 min – the iterative nature of reality.. you actually change the world by meeting.. simply by being present.. by beginning a convo.. t

2 convos .. as the day

11 min – why not come out from behind yourself.. this wall that you’ve set up for yourself.. that you call you.. and meet something other than yourself..

or.. more apt.. the not yourself..

12 min – why are you unhappy.. because.. 98.98 of everything you do/say if for yourself.. and there isn’t one.. (irish poet)..

there’s no self that will survive a real convo.. a real meeting with something other than itself.. if it’s in the convo.. move the pivot of your presence..

13 min – meet something other than yourself..

15 min – i’m not having the convo.. it’s not occurring

16 min – don’t have to do all the work.. just have to have the convo.. creates a dynamic where you look around and work is being done..  i just have to face toward what is actually calling me

18 min – we shape ourselves to fit this world and by the world are shaped again.. the visible and the invisible working together in common cause.. to produce the miraculous.. i’m thinking of the way the intangible air traveled its speed around the shaped wing easily holds our weight .. so may we in this life.. trust to those elements we have yet to see our imagine.. trust.. and find the true shape of our own selves.. by forming it well to the great intangibles about us 

eudaimonia fittingness


on anger and forgiveness – via Maria


ANGER is the deepest form of compassion, for another, for the world, for the self, for a life, for the body, for a family and for all our ideals, all vulnerable and all, possibly about to be hurt. Stripped of physical imprisonment and violent reaction, anger is the purest form of care, the internal living flame of anger always illuminates what we belong to, what we wish to protect and what we are willing to hazard ourselves for. What we usually call anger is only what is left of its essence when we are overwhelmed by its accompanying vulnerability, when it reaches the lost surface of our mind or our body’s incapacity to hold it, or when it touches the limits of our understanding

What we have named as anger on the surface is the violent outer response to our own inner powerlessness, a powerlessness connected to such a profound sense of rawness and care that it can find no proper outer body or identity or voice, or way of life to hold it. 

Forgiveness is a skill, a way of preserving clarity, sanity and generosity in an individual life, a beautiful way of shaping the mind to a future we want for ourselves; an admittance that if forgiveness comes through understanding, and if understanding is just a matter of time and application then we might as well begin forgiving right at the beginning of any drama rather than put ourselves through the full cycle of festering, incapacitation, reluctant healing and eventual blessing.

To forgive is to put oneself in a larger gravitational field of experience than the one that first seemed to hurt us. We reimagine ourselves in the light of our maturity and we reimagine the past in the light of our new identity, we allow ourselves to be gifted by a story larger than the story that first hurt us and left us bereft.


via maria.. on naming love


We name mostly in order to control but what is worth loving does not want to be held within the bounds of too narrow a calling. In many ways love has already named us before we can even begin to speak back to it, before we can utter the right words or understand what has happened to us or is continuing to happen to us: an invitation to the most difficult art of all, to love without naming at all.

control.. labels..


via maria.. https://www.brainpickings.org/2015/08/20/amin-maalouf-identity/

As philosopher David Whyte aptly observed, “our sense of slight woundedness around not belonging is actually one of our core competencies.”

whyte competency law


via maria.. from consolations.. on courage crisis .. https://www.brainpickings.org/2016/11/16/david-whyte-consolations-courage-crisis/

Walking the pilgrim edge between the two, holding them together, is the hardest place to stay, to breathe of both and make a world of both and to be active in their exchange: aware of our need to be needed, our wish to be seen, our constant need for help and succor, but inhabiting a world of luminosity and intensity, subject to the wind and the weather, surrounded by the music of existence, able to be found by the living world and with a wild self-forgetful ability to respond to its call when needed; a rehearsal in fact for the act of dying, a place where inside and outside can reverse and flow with no fixed form.

Whyte’s Consolations remains one of the most beautiful and consolatory books I’ve ever encountered, the kind with which each repeated encounter is always new and always regenerative. (I recently had the honor of composing the introduction to the new English edition of this quiet, deeply resonant gem.)

consolations on hold at library – thanks library


via maria – the true love – by david [https://www.brainpickings.org/2021/07/26/david-whyte-the-truelove/]:

There is a faith in loving fiercely
the one who is rightfully yours,
especially if you have
waited years and especially
if part of you never believed
you could deserve this
loved and beckoning hand
held out to you this way.

I am thinking of faith now
and the testaments of loneliness
and what we feel we are
worthy of in this world.


so that when
we finally step out of the boat
toward them, we find
everything holds
us, and everything confirms
our courage, and if you wanted
to drown you could,
but you don’t
because finally
after all this struggle
and all these years
you simply don’t want to
any more
you’ve simply had enough
of drowning
and you want to live and you
want to love and you will
walk across any territory
and any darkness
however fluid and however
dangerous to take the
one hand you know
belongs in yours