Mark Nepo's Weekly Reflection: The Mute Sage

When the jar fell off the counter
and broke, our dog went to lick up
the honey but we were afraid she’d
cut herself on the broken glass.

You kept her back while I swept
up the slivers. Later that night,
it occurred to me that this is
what it is to be human: always
going for the honey while
tiptoeing around the glass.

The next week, it was so cold
that ice stuck to our dog’s pads.
We had to stop every block or so
to free her feet from clumps of ice.
This too was a lesson. For without
warmth, we cannot make our way.

As I write this, she dreams whatever
dogs dream and I keep looking for
whatever humans look for.

A Question to Walk With: Tell the story of an animal that has touched your life.

This excerpt is from my book of poems, The Gods Visit.

Mark Nepo’s new 3-session webinar will center on the gift and work of relationship—for it is only through the bonds of relationship that we can help each other stay awake. While no one can live your life for you, the deep paradox is that no one can make it alone. With our society fractured in so many ways, restoring the life of relationship is more crucial than ever. So, whether you are tending your relationship with a significant other, a friend, a family member, or a colleague, we each need to become skilled at empathizing with others without giving ourselves away. In this webinar, we will explore the inherent gifts and limitations of relationship and examine the recurring struggles that we must move through to stay authentic with ourselves and each other. All to build a better net of resilience between us. Visit for details.


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