You do not have to be good.
You do not have to practice till fingertips are bloody and muscles jump and burn.
You have only to let the soft animal of your body press into the heart and
carve out a place in your heart.
You have only to begin with prayer and end with praise.
You have only to bless each errant note with kind anticipation of surer grasp.
You have only to remember Turloch, hunched with harp, walking rocky paths seeing melodies everywhere
and countless centuries of musical wanderers, making the trail we follow.
You have only to remember humble abbeys and grand cathedrals
where music lifted hungry pilgrims.
You have only to remember hospice havens
where harpers joined with souls traveling the last piece.
You have only to remember a small shepherd awaiting dawn
singing to rambling sheep.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile get your heart to the purple iris, and sit with her and sing her a new tune.
Meanwhile do a duet with the dove
ask her the secrets of the universe, and see who smiles.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely
the harp offers herself to your imagination, each tuned string inviting heart;
breathe deeper, see with sweet opened eyes, know the love that you are.
Folk Harp Journal, Number 108, Summer 2000