Notes for 2021 By Annika Hein

Every morning  
the world 
is created. 
Under the orange 
sticks of the sun  
— ‘Morning Poem’ by Mary Oliver. 
And didn’t it feel nice to sit still for a minute.  
To watch the birds fly instead of planes.  
The minutes melting into hours.  
Days. Weeks.  
Time stretched out in front of us.  
Like an enormous ocean of hope 
and maybe sometimes hurting.  
So we floated.  
between ease and discomfort.  
Salty. Sinking. 
and maybe sometimes grateful. 
Didn’t it feel nice to listen to the earth breathing. 
Deep and deserving.  
To take long walk. 
Watch the seasons change, just as they were always going to.  
Flowers falling. 
Something felt familiar.  
And then it was spring.  
We mourned the moments we didn’t get to have.  
The ones that couldn’t go east or west.  
But we moved forward with a new listening available. 
Perhaps a way to think and be a little bit differently.  
To travel inside and fix the framework of our imagination.  
Sit a little uncomfortably. 
Get underneath 
down to the grit and the  

It was heavy and hard. This year, the one with the 20/20 vision magnifying all of our skeletons and breaking us in bone and sometimes heart. But time, it seems, can be the catalyst for change, and without the distraction of our regular programming our priorities appear to have shifted and we started paying attention. In the spirit of new beginnings let’s look at what was, and perhaps what still is, with our eyes and hearts wide open and ready. Shift our perspective and commit to the things that make us feel good and warm and giddy, no longer willing to forgo or take for granted beauty, unity, earth, or self. Let’s make small changes that instigate big impact in an effort to move from harm to healing and from conquest to co-creation. Let’s look upon the lessons we were forced to learn as they guide us into the New Year with hope and gratitude and perhaps a little hindsight.

Ocean Vuong once wrote, ‘we can live. And we will,’ so in the face of a brand new tomorrow perhaps it may be comforting to reflect upon how it is that you wish to live in 2021. To pull your focus to the importance of the living that exists in full view of others, strangers or not. The living we do together, in full view of the world we share.

So, buy good things and own them a long time.
Plant some posies for our pollinators.
Live beneath your means.
Smile at strangers.
Drink some water.
Ignore the grinding gears of a broken system acting out for attention.
Feel the earth beneath your feet.
Connect again to the coarse grains of the soil, breathe in the air, and watch the pale blue sky light up with magnificent molten silver each night.

Doesn’t it feel nice.