A Circle of Light


I took this photo on Tuesday late at night after a rain storm. I felt the wet grass beneath my bare feet, looked up at the obscured moon and stars sometimes glimpsed among the densely clouded sky and was struck how the little solar lamp formed a lighted circle on the ground around the plants.

I thought about the week still ahead, closing down the rooms, seeing a few friends locally before the upcoming travel down to Plettenberg Bay where we will be a full house over the festive season.

I thought about the politics here in South Africa and abroad, the devastation in Aleppo, Mother Nature and the ongoing attempts of her destruction. The troubling person who is the US president-elect. And wondered about the psychic infection of warring and the inherent dangers of such an infection.Β 

I thank heaven for the outbreaks of light that appear here and there on our planet. The water protectors protesting the Dakota pipeline, steadfast in their bravery to protect life-giving water. Our opposition parties here in South Africa who at last seem to making our people aware of the devastation our current government has caused. Not only opposition parties, those within the government who are making a stand against our president and his cronies. All over the world, those who stand up for what is right. Steadfast –

To me it seems as if there is an upsurging of another kind of power, one that is life-affirming, curious, intriguing, loving. It appears in dreams, where women dream of other women who offer succour, listening, arms opening to embrace the other. Where women enfold and embrace all that is and have a knowing that even among all that is dark and disturbing, there is a way towards greater wholeness and harmony.Β 

Rumi comes to mind at times like this –

‘Out beyond ideas of wrongdoing and rightdoing there is a field.

I’ll meet you there. When the soul lies down in that grass

the world is too full to talk about’.

– and from the Book of Hours (Rilke)

“I live my life in widening circles that reach out across the world.

I may not complete this last one but I give myself to it.

I circle around God, around the primordial tower.

I’ve been circling for thousands of years and I still don’t know:

am I a falcon, a storm, or a great song?”

May you always find a circle of light in the darkness – the menorah of the upcoming Hanukkah always glows brightly – as does the star in the East in Bethlehem –chanukkah2-1

and the moon – taken tonight –


32 comments on “A Circle of Light”

  1. perfect post susan; loved the way you have named it “A Circle of Light.. and thank you for your generosity of wishing us find light, beautiful images and thanks for inspiring … your post makes me reflect and thank you for sharing πŸ™‚

  2. This is beautiful, Susan. That you captured the moment as it captured you, thank you for that and for sharing that moment of light and your thoughts with us. And, ditto what Gwynn says.

    Love and light to you and all.

  3. Thank you, Susan. I’m also watching everywhere for the light within the dark. The circles of women. Last week I went to a wedding shower for a woman in her late 30s whom I’ve known since she was in the womb. I was thrilled to be part of the women surrounding and holding her. (We all carefully avoided speaking of politics because we’re all worried.) I’m also grateful for the water protectors and for other women who will be in Washington DC for a Women’s March on Jan. 21. Will it change things? I don’t know, but I know nothing will change if we don’t keep speaking up and speaking out.

    I always count on Nature and her cycles, trusting that She will survive in some way or other even if humans don’t. Blessed Summer Solstice to you, Susan. Have a wonderful time with your family.

    • Thank you Elaine for your comment. We have to speak up and speak out – or write about it – but protest we must. There is nothing as strong as women protesting.

      A blessed Winter Solstice to you …

  4. Hi Susan – let’s just hope we get some strong leaders, who just don’t deal .. but who work with others within the appropriate guidelines and rules.

    Life is really difficult for the poorer, less educated person …. and those in a country where similar adjectives apply life is even more difficult … but change comes from within … let’s hope … for each country, continent and all populations …

    Enjoy the peace and solace or hair-raising festivities! Good to have all three … cheers and and a really happy Christmas time – Hilary

    • Hi Hilary, I’ve been reading some out of date ‘The Spectator’ magazines so have been able to get before and after Brexit views – altogether interesting and so complex. Everywhere it seems as if things are getting difficult, especially as you say for the poorer and less educated. The rich get rich and the poorer, poorer … prices are increasing all the time not just on basic food stuffs but everything else.

      May your Christmas be blessed and peaceful xx Susan

  5. I agree with you about the kind of things you find troubling and also about the kind of things you see as outbreaks of light. I like that you were able to end your post on such an optimistic note.

  6. For some reason, of late my memory banks have drawn from its depths the Wordsworth poem “The World Is Too Much With Us”–makes maybe more sense now than when it was first written.

    The World Is Too Much With Us

    The world is too much with us; late and soon,
    Getting and spending, we lay waste our powers;β€”
    Little we see in Nature that is ours;
    We have given our hearts away, a sordid boon!
    This Sea that bares her bosom to the moon;
    The winds that will be howling at all hours,
    And are up-gathered now like sleeping flowers;
    For this, for everything, we are out of tune;
    It moves us not. Great God! I’d rather be
    A Pagan suckled in a creed outworn;
    So might I, standing on this pleasant lea,
    Have glimpses that would make me less forlorn;
    Have sight of Proteus rising from the sea;
    Or hear old Triton blow his wreathèd horn.

    Arlee Bird
    Tossing It Out

  7. In addition to all the international conflict in our world, it’s been cloudy around here in my own world so I haven’t seen the stars in many nights. I long for some clarity and sparkle, both for the world and in my own life. Not much of a holiday season this year for anyone it seems. Pity that, but maybe we all need to acknowledge the gloom before we can appreciate the light?

    • May clarity and sparkle come your way Ally Bean in spite of the gloom. The dark is needed in order for the light to be seen – have a lovely weekend and thank you for coming by.

  8. Thank you, Susan.
    Wishing you and your family a lovely festive time … and us all a little more freedom, happiness and beauty.

    Wondering – the first poem seems to be from Rumi.

    • Thanks so much Ashen, corrected! I cannot believe I made that error! I must have been cross-eyed.

      And all good wishes to you all over this festive season – ‘a little more freedom, happiness and beauty’ would do us all so well!

  9. Beautiful post, Susan. (I love that you were able to catch the photo, too.)
    Thank for the reminder that the light is there, but we must remember to look for it–and to share it with others.

    • Thanks Merril so much! My post was scheduled to go up at 10.00pm SA time, but at about 10 to 10 I looked out and saw the moon between the trees in the distance – . This I wanted to go in at the end – so I rescheduled, charged outside into own garden, moon hanging a bit low, but took a pic anyway standing on a chair, then charged outside of the complex and snapped a few more pictures which I think because of the flash were not photographs at all … so charged inside, sent pic on my phone to my email, saved it as blog image and used it – as the countdown to 10.10 began – OK I know that’s TMI (too much information) but since you said in your comment ‘…(I love that you were able to catch the photo, too.)’ and you said about sharing the light I especially wanted wanted to tell you about the photo! πŸ™‚

      Have a great weekend! And thank you again!

    • Thank you Robert so much! Now that I think about it, I wrote somewhere about a torch being just that, an inanimate ‘thing’, until it is switched on or off … πŸ™‚

      Happy Christmas and festive season to you Robert and your family. May it be blessed and happy.

      Love, Susan.

  10. Wonderful uplifting post, lots of good and bad in our world. On thing I can help with: Don’t worry about President-elect Trump. The press rarely presents the truth about him. He’s going to do a great job for America and the world.

    • Thanks Jacqui for coming by! It’s a public holiday here in SA, the Day of Reconciliation. It’ll be interesting to see how it is upheld. Have a lovely weekend πŸ˜€

  11. Susan, with the darkness forming around the world, our friendships form the trail of light needed to see the way and guide us to safety and happiness for all. We will have to stand strong. Big Hugs to you! Have a very Blessed and Merry Christmas!

  12. A welcome response to incipient hell! One cannot make sense of what one encounters ‘externally’. Only the internal now makes sense( which it always did). Plet for Christmas? Oh you have no idea how much I envy that! Happy Christmas Susan.

    • Thanks Philippa for commenting. The world’s a strange place – the centre seems not to hold. Happy Christmas to you too, thank you for your Christmas wishes.

  13. Susan, I love you so dearly. You are a soul sister, and we have traveled together on this planet many times before. Your writing is rich with enlightenment. Thank you for being in my life this time around as well. Happy holidays, as I am aware you celebrate with the entire human race.

    • What a lovely response Marsha thank you! ‘Soul sisters’ – yes we are. Thank you for your support always – this is so much appreciated by me. I’ll be sending a Christmas card soon on this platform but thank you for your festive wishes! Have a lovely weekend.

  14. This is absolutely lovely, Susan. Like you, I always find a circle of light in the darkness and for me this season it is the star of Bethlehem. Thank you for the affirmation here: It only takes one candle to dispel darkness. Thank you!

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