Presented with permission of the author . WWW.oriah.org
 
I was so touched by this poem, I wanted to get permission to be able to  share with others and examine the words  on how I am inspired by them.  Taking each of the 12 stanzas and reflecting upon them.
 
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The Invitation by Oriah
 
I am taking  the invitation and each stanza to reflect and see how if my life mirrors these words and where I need to do more inner growth to be able to live this poem outwardly.. When I read this poem It reflects how I feel about  souls that come into and out of my life, if /when I fail to portray this I have failed myself.
 
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.
 My hearts longing… since a very small girl I knew I wanted a cowboy and what they stood for like John Wayne. To live in the country and be a part of it without cooping up animals but being able to enjoy them all the same.  This longing has been Filled…
 I do have a wonderful husband that is all cowboy and a touch of redneck too… but he sure knows how to treat me like a lady and is more supportive than I could have ever dreamed of. We live under lots of oak trees have a pond when the rain decides it needs to be filled and animals oh my… the animals. We have whistler ducks, mallards, squirrels, dove, cardinals,rabbits and even a buck and donkey and cows on the property next to us.  To watch these critters go to the feeders and birdbaths is country living at its best for me.
 
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.
Truely to experience life and it beauty you too have experience these sorrows and betrayals. After some very deep emotional & physically trying times, I knew that I didnt’ want to become bitter and shrivelled and protect myself from possible future hurts… I had asked my beautiful daughter for an open heart pendant so that I would have a constant reminder that I wanted to keep my heart open… The same weekend I met my husband.
 
 
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,
“Yes.”

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.

By Oriah © Mountain Dreaming,
from the book The Invitation
published by HarperONE, San Francisco,
1999 All rights reserved