The Magic of this Lifetime

Flowers and Photography by Barbara Mattio

” Full of life now, compact, visible,
I, forty years old the eighty-third year of the States,
To one a century hence or any number of centuries hence,
To you yet unborn these, seeking you.
When you read these I that was visible am become invisible,
Now it is you, compact, visible, realizing my poems, seeking me,
Fancying how happy you were if I could be with you and become your comrade;
Be it as if I were with you. ( Be not too certain but I am now with you.)


—–Walt Whitman
Laws of Creation

Humanity under a magnifying glass, an experience of telescoping time, sensual and direct. These describe Whitman’s writings.  His vision of people was democratic, nonjudgmental and filled with the width and breadth of human existence.
During Whitman’s lifetime, he looked at America as an idea and a nation.
He lived during great revolution, poverty and war.

Whitman was one of the American poets who saw the reality of the past and the allure of the future. He was a man capable of introspection and contemplation which fueled his poetry. His poetry has a flow and a music which starts slowly and builds to a crescendo of joy, ecstasy, and love.

Myrtle Beach, SC, Photo by Barbara Mattio

Whitman had an uncanny way to perceive the truth in life, our nation and the people he met in his many travels. His love and clear seeing and thinking led him to say:  ” I sing the body electric.”

I think we could do much worse in 2012, than to read and/or meditate upon his words and what they could mean in our lives.

The Life of Love

“I have loved in life, and been loved.
My heart has been rent and joined again.
My heart has been broken and again made whole.
A thousand deaths my heart has died, and thanks be to love.
It lives yet.
I went to hell and saw there love’s raging fire, and I
entered heaven illuminated with the light of love.
The whole world sank in the flood caused by my one tear
I bowed my head low in humility, and on my knees I begged of love,
‘Disclose to me, I pray thee, O love, thy secret’.
She took me gently by my arms and lifted me above the earth, and spoke softly in my ear,
‘My dear one, thou thyself art love, art lover,and thyself art the beloved whom thou hast adored'”.

—Hazrat Inayat Khan

The fragrance of love, Photo by Barbara Mattio