Recently, I found a bucket list that I wrote on lined notebook paper in 2001, the year my youngest son graduated from high school. There were twelve items written on the paper simply titled, “THE LIST.” I was surprised to find that several items had been accomplished and as many needed revision. Impermanence is the indestructible wisdom teaching of old. It is as true today as it was when first spoken by the ancient sages. Everything changes. I felt no disappointment about the things on the list that are not going to be accomplished. Auditing physics at the local university is not a continuing aspiration but attending a Broadway play still seems attainable.

You might have already guessed that I am a list maker. I make endless list of mundane chores, writing projects, travel plans, books I want to read, etc. There is a sense of accomplishment in tearing off that completed list and moving onto the next. Many notebooks have come and gone through my 64 years of life so why is it that sometimes I feel unaccomplished? This thought has inspired a new list. The list looks like this:

  1. What I know about healing
  2. What I now about spirituality
  3. What I know about art
  4. What I know about nature
  5. What I know about mysticism
  6. What I know about relationships
  7. What I know about equanimity
  8. What I know about connectivity
  9. What I know about wellness
  10. What I know about surrender
  11. What I know about aging
  12. What I know about longing

I have no idea if this list will be revised or accomplished or forgotten in the next 17 years only to be found in a dusty binder but, I am certain that impermanence will play its part.

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Bessie Senette

Bessie Senette is the author of Cutting the Clouds: a Bayou Mystic’s Poems, Musings, and Imaginings – an autobiographical collection of poems and essays about the life and culture of her bayou upbringing and the spirituality that informs her traditional healing gifts. Her current work-in-progress is Louisiana Pines: Homeland Poems and Vignettes; a chapbook that poetically explores her beloved home state.

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