Today is Saturday, Day 214 in Bahrain’s Coronavirus time, and Prompt #110 in The Isolation Journals by Suleika Jaouad. This week’s prompt was written by Rachel Schwartzmann. It is about sitting quietly and seeing what thoughts come.
- Set the timer for 5 minutes.
- Stare at the wall or nothing.
- Enjoy the slowness and stillness.
- Write the thoughts and questions of those moment.
Last week at the Ethical ELA Open Write, we wrote Magic-9 poems. Two of the participants wrote about the stillness that Rachel talked about in her prompt.
I was reminded of The Isolation Journals prompt while I read their poems. Sharon wrote one called “Soulspeak” inspired by the quote: “Quiet the mind, and the soul will speak,” by Ma Jaya Sati Bhagavatiand. Susan wrote a poem called “Behind Eyelids” inspired by a quote from Paul Gauguin: ”I shut my eyes in order to see.”
Their poems inspired me to write my own Magic-9 poem about what I heard during my quiet reflection.
In blindness I grope
Hope is a winged bird
My parched soul longs to cope
To cling to this good news
The world is a kaleidoscope
Of centurions and servants
Each at the end of their rope
A still small voice I heard
“Never give up Hope”
What came to mind during my five-minute quiet was this first stanza of a poem by Emily Dickinson:
“Hope” is the thing with feathers –
That perches in the soul –
And sings the tune without the words –
And never stops – at all –
Another thing that has been on my mind is a Bible story about the centurion’s faith in Jesus to heal his beloved servant in Matthew 8:5-13.