“You can’t measure your success by the number of
people who follow you. You measure it by how
true you are to path. Because if you aren’t true to
path, no amount of societal success will ever
gratify you. And if you are true to path, the way
that the world receives you is of little significance
because you have already found your way home.”
Jeff Brown, Hearticulations: on friendship, love and healing, 2020
Hmmmm…ideally, in principle, I know this to be true and appreciate Jeff’s reminder. Though right now, during the cinematic and music awards season, witnessing the unabashed joy, honor, respect, humility, and bewilderment experienced by winners, and too, by those who didn’t win (let’s step away from the binary), I do think such acknowledgement of one’s being “true to path” is important. Perhaps even vital.
I sampled such sweetness when after several submissions over the past two years, and a couple of honourable mentions, I received the email this week announcing my poem had been chosen by the judges of Off Topic Publishing’s poetry contest. Last week another publisher wrote back in response to a submission that my three poems were “fabulous.” Had I not erred in submitting them simultaneously, often an acceptable practice but in this case forbidden, they’d be published this spring. A trifecta of success when the Edmonton Stroll of Poets selected one of my photos for the cover of its 2023 annual anthology, and too, a poem. A bit more remote, though nonetheless rewarding, is that my editor secured an international publisher for the education anthology she oversaw, for which I wrote the foreward and poetry for each section.
Do I feel joy, thankful, affirmed for my efforts? You bet I do. Emailing a friend, I wrote that the angels had given me just enough to nudge me on in this new calling. While I’d already lived the lesson of leaning into rejection and mustering perseverance – one I know will come again and again – after hiding in a cave for a couple of months upon taking way too seriously an off hand remark from an established local poet, I somehow found my way back to path by editing, writing and preparing over twenty submissions, including another send out of my collection, during the first two months of this year.
Now to wait and see…and finish packing for my return to Morocco, where for three weeks I’ll revisit a land that enchanted, enthralled, and inspired one of those “honorably mentioned” poems. I won’t be posting here this month. And while I’ll be photographing, I’m uncertain about posting on my Facebook and or Instagram accounts.
In the meantime, I wish you, dear friends, the uplifting joy in spring’s arrival together with much love and kindest regards.