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It doesn’t interest me
what you do for a living.
I want to know
what you ache for
and if you dare to dream
of meeting your heart’s longing.

It doesn’t interest me
how old you are.
I want to know
if you will risk
looking like a fool
for love
for your dream
for the adventure of being alive.

It doesn’t interest me
what planets are
squaring your moon…
I want to know
if you have touched
the centre of your own sorrow
if you have been opened
by life’s betrayals
or have become shrivelled and closed
from fear of further pain.
I want to know
if you can sit with pain
mine or your own
without moving to hide it
or fade it
or fix it.

I want to know
if you can be with joy
mine or your own
if you can dance with wildness
and let the ecstasy fill you
to the tips of your fingers and toes
without cautioning us
to be careful
to be realistic
to remember the limitations
of being human.

It doesn’t interest me
if the story you are telling me
is true.
I want to know if you can
disappoint another
to be true to yourself.
If you can bear
the accusation of betrayal
and not betray your own soul.
If you can be faithless
and therefore trustworthy.

I want to know if you can see Beauty
even when it is not pretty
every day.
And if you can source your own life
from its presence.
I want to know
if you can live with failure
yours and mine
and still stand at the edge of the lake
and shout to the silver of the full moon,

It doesn’t interest me
to know where you live
or how much money you have.
I want to know if you can get up
after the night of grief and despair
weary and bruised to the bone
and do what needs to be done
to feed the children.

It doesn’t interest me
who you know
or how you came to be here.
I want to know if you will stand
in the centre of the fire
with me
and not shrink back.
It doesn’t interest me
where or what or with whom
you have studied.
I want to know
what sustains you
from the inside
when all else falls away.
I want to know
if you can be alone
with yourself
and if you truly like
the company you keep
in the empty moments.

(The Invitation by Oriah Mountain Dreamer)

Comments (12)

  1. Mac said on 15-05-2012


  2. witsend said on 13-07-2011

    loved this book , the invitation and how it came to be as such . other books from oriah that are equally compelling – what we ache for and the dance 😀

  3. corpcloset said on 14-04-2011

    pc sent me this poem just as i was wondering whether he liked me as much as i liked him. he never seemed to ask me the typical dating questions of work, family, academics, etc. as if he read my mind, the answers i sought were all written by oriah. i read it and felt my knees grow weak! thanks, dear friend, for making me remember that moment.

  4. Alvin said on 11-04-2011

    I wish I can be as strong as you Migs. Every line strongly meant bravery and vulnerability. Inspirational thought, beautifully made!!!

  5. pao said on 10-04-2011

    can relate much. nice.

  6. Nimmy said on 08-04-2011

    awwwwwwwwwwwww. kala ko gawa mo. hehehe

    Happy Friday :mrgreen:

  7. Mark said on 08-04-2011

    very nice 😀

  8. elmerlovesoreo said on 08-04-2011

    Kala ko composition ni Migs :)

  9. brndn said on 08-04-2011

    cheeeez!!! makopya nga

  10. brndn said on 08-04-2011

    grabe na ito, nadadamay na kay Oriah the Mountain Dreamer!!!

  11. Fritz said on 08-04-2011


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