01/21/2014 04:38 pm ET Updated Mar 23, 2014

Midway in Our Journey

Part of everyone's journey in life is to arrive at precipice or fork in the road or at the end of a path and to realize we no longer know our way. Hard as this is, this is where the inner journey begins, when all we've carried has served its purpose and now we must burn it for warmth and to see what's next. This is when the soul shows itself, if we will listen. This is when we assume our full stature and make our own path.

Midway in Our Journey

Just when we're softened by the years,
when we have enough experience to see
for ourselves, our maps are torn from us.
This can be frightening, but there's
divine timing in the dissolution of a
stubborn mind, the way an inlet waits
on the last rock to crumble so it can
find its destiny in the sea. Losing the
way set out by others is necessary so we
can discover for ourselves what it means
to be alive. Now we can burn the clothes
others have laid out for us, not in anger
but to light our way. Now we can let the
soul spill its honey on the unleavened life
we've been carrying. Now we can rise.

A Question to Walk With: Describe an inheritance of mind or heart, of values or goals, that no longer works for you. Describe your history with this inheritance: how it came to you, how it worked for you and when it stopped being relevant. Describe how you are finding your way.

For more poetry for the soul, click here.

For more by Mark Nepo, click here.