Lyrical Prose: ‘The Earth, The Body’; In Iceland Renouncing The ‘Good’ Girl

Journaling on the way from south to north Iceland

The glacier is the river and then it is the bay where the dolphins came in at the dock, and in that way the glacier is them too. Then it is the patches of deep green where the slopes of the mountains are too gradually inclined for the glacier to become stream, so the glacier becomes moss and tiny white, purple and yellow petals. Then the glacier becomes the sheep and the wings on birds.

And so it is that the inside of us is the outside too, and the music of the world in which we reside so eerily becomes the same music we produce, without us even trying. Everywhere it is like this and when you listen close and lean your chest in to really hear, you notice that the way the rain falls and the birds call is the same rhythm and pattern of the music made in the region of those sounds.

When we hug the earth and rest our bodies against cliffs and bark and grass, we are hugging ourselves, and that isn’t just spiritual faerie hippie mumbo jumbo—it just is. And the veil thins and the coincidences become less coincidental.

The bodies we are near are also our own, as much as the earth we take from and give to and love and are loved by. We are made of the same. When we nurture one another we nurture ourselves. Giving love from our chests is a practice we have to cultivate, like choosing to see the goodness in one another. Loving on another with your being—and I am not talking about touching or even using words—is loving ourselves. It is something to practice and stay sharp at. It takes a willingness. It takes surrender. To be vessels and givers and receptacles of this kind of grace is to lay your human stuff down—your defenses and explanations of why you are different and separate and more special than the next. To get into this practice is to come to love the feeling of that weight being lifted off of you. You love it so much that it becomes the only thing that makes sense to do.


Please give me your behind-the-scenes, your shadow that clings to your shoes and knows no color, brand, style or separation. Tell me that you wanted to connect but felt jealousy, or indifference, or scorn, or irritation, or resentment, or shame. Tell me about the time you questioned your decisions and how you sometimes wonder if you’re lying to yourself, or not. Let your hair get mangled in the pursuit of a belly-laugh and spit the jagged and molded-over truth out like it is a sandbag keeping you from running into me again.

When I stopped trying to be good I became more of a friend to myself, and more of a friend to everything and everyone. When I lost the appeal of what is appealing to the masses, I won the appeal of my soul-self. And it feels like coming home.

I hope you stay strange and never sacrifice your cackle for a more likeable laugh. I hope you never run out of meters when you are scribbling lines onto pages and sand and chalk-ridden sidewalks. I hope that children always feel a safe kinship and sense of relief around you and your 57 goofy voices. I hope you never get so serious about an idea of yourself that you miss an opportunity to connect and be soul instead of a human. I hope your singing gets gruff in the night and you sing anyway. I hope that a sky to look at and a hand to hold will always be enough. I hope you find the others, and they find you too.

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