Three weeks ago in this post, I shared a music video from the documentary Many Beautiful Things about the little known artist, writer, adventurer and missionary Lilias Trotter. Earlier this week I watched the film because the music from a favorite artist of mine drew me in and I curiously looked up the trailer.
Several of the quotes from Lilias in the film made me feel overcome with admiration. This was a woman who voluntarily gave up an opportunity for recognition and acclaim in order to travel far away to a desert, a country where she was unable to communicate in the local tongue and unfamiliar with the customs. She gave up a life of relative ease to live in harsher conditions, and spent years of her life serving women and children who had desperate needs.
I was particularly impressed by her thoughts on the sand lily. Her biographer shares the quote and expounds on it in a thoughtful and worthwhile post here.
Instead of commenting beyond what Miriam has done, I will simply share a poem of my own that Lilias’ thoughts inspired.
Sand Lily If I’m my worst enemy I err on the side of caution Holding back only to avoid Tripping over myself And taking a tumble Ignoring the fact That I can be careful But move forward still And if I fall and land Where I did not want to I can stand up again And sometimes after all The landing is softer Than expected Or can be the place I need to be in To see from a new angle And truly I forget But want, no need To believe that I am a sand lily As no harshness or lack Around me will induce A threat to my bloom For when I search From within I have all that I need