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Reflections: Waiting At A Crossroads…

20/03/2012

“You are now at a crossroads. This is your opportunity to make the most important decision you will ever make. Forget your past. Who are you now? Who have you decided you really are now…?”  Anthony Robbins

Reflections: Waiting At A Crossroads...

Don’t think about who you have been. Who are you now? Who have you decided to become? Make this decision consciously. Make it carefully. Make it powerfully.” Anthony Robbins

Crossroads by Joyce Sutphen
The second half of my life will be black
to the white rind of the old and fading moon.
The second half of my life will be water
over the cracked floor of these desert years.
I will land on my feet this time,
knowing at least two languages and who
my friends are. I will dress for the
occasion, and my hair shall be
whatever color I please.
Everyone will go on celebrating the old
birthday, counting the years as usual,
but I will count myself new from this
inception, this imprint of my own desire.

The second half of my life will be swift,
past leaning fence posts, a gravel shoulder,
asphalt tickets, the beckon of open road.
The second half of my life will be wide-eyed,
fingers shifting through fine sands,
arms loose at my sides, wandering feet.
There will be new dreams every night,
and the drapes will never be closed.
I will toss my string of keys into a deep
well and old letters into the grate.

The second half of my life will be ice
breaking up on the river, rain
soaking the fields, a hand
held out, a fire,
and smoke going
upward, always up.

At some point in our lives, we reach a crossroads, a four corner path with no clear clues on which one to take. For some, it’s easy to shut the eyes and choose. For others, it is time to sit, wait and contemplate which road will lead us to the gate; our place of personal nirvana. I’m at a crossroads and I’m torn between a few uneasy options… the answers are not apparent so I must sit and wait…

“The writer operates at a peculiar crossroads where time and place and eternity somehow meet. His problem is to find that location.”  Flannery O’Connor

Reflections: At A Crossroads...

Reflections: At A Crossroads...

At the Crossroads by Sadie Tiller Crawley
He stood at the crossroads all alone,
The sunlight in his face;
He had no thought for an evil course,
He was set for a manly race.
But the road stretched east and the
road stretched west,
And he did not know which road
was the best;
So he took the wrong road and it lead
him down,
And he lost the race and the
victor’s crown.
He was caught at last in an
angry snare
Because no one stood at the
crossroads there
To show him the better road.
Another day at the self-same place
A boy with high hopes stood;
He, too, was set for a manly race
He was seeking the things that
were good.
And one was there who the roads
did know,
And that one showed him the
way to go;
So he turned away from the road
leading down,
And he won the race and the
victor’s crown;
He walks today on the highways fair
Because one stood at the
crossroads there
To show him a better road.

Sometimes we get calls to make a decision about an important, life affirming event. We huddle with those we trust, we mull over the facts, we recommend A over B and then, we sit and wait. When some inkling of an answer arises in our chest, we act on it. Are we always right? Are we sometimes wrong? Are we able to look truth or evil in the eyes and name it…? More below. My condolences go to Trayvon Martin’s family…

“At every crossroads on the path that leads to the future, tradition has placed 10,000 men to guard the past.” Maurice Maeterlinck

Reflections: At A Crossroads...

“We had no knowledge that our lives had just changed. You seldom sit at a crossroads and know it’s a crossroads. But from the ovation forward, my life was not going to be the same.” Alex Raffe

The Road Not Taken by Robert Frost
Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveller, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I–
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference

Whether we have a 5, 10, or 20 year plan, we can’t guarantee that all our plans will come to fruition. Sometimes we might make a wrong turn, take a short cut, meet an unforeseen mountain, and then we must wait and contemplate a way out or find another door in. That is life with all its surprises… Whatever happens, we must never be silent even while we wait; especially where injustice has left its mark… that is where growth lies. What are your thoughts? Have you read any of the poems above? Which Crossroads poems comes to mind? Do you have any experience of being at a crossroads? How did you handle it? Do share! Thank you. 😉

*Please bear with me as I continue to catch up on your blogs and commenting… Thank you all for your patience! 🙂

Positive Motivation Tip: We reach a point in our lives when we meet a crossroads. WE must choose wisely, prayerfully and with care… Go Grow!

PHOTO CREDITS/ATTRIBUTIONS: All photos Crossroad in winter, Crossroads to FairfordCrossroads Too, Crossroads UK, via Wikipedia and/or via Flickr Excerpts via Famous Poets and Poems:

Until Next Time…
Ask. Believe. Receive. ©
Elizabeth Obih-Frank
Mirth and Motivation
Positive Kismet

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37 Comments leave one →
  1. 21/03/2012 12:10 am

    I am here … standing at the crossroads … looking for someone to help me know which way to go … ugh 😉 … my tummy is nervous and unsettled … so many directions!

    Like

  2. 21/03/2012 12:13 am

    Beautifully compiled post Elizabeth. The quote of “Anthony Robbins” is so meaningful. Every thing about the post is so perfect and meaningful; the photographs, the quotes and even the poems. Great Job. 🙂

    Like

  3. 21/03/2012 1:46 am

    Your compilation is awesome. I love At the Crossroads by Sadie Tiller Crawley best. The poem related to me on a spiritual level. Any crossroads that we decide on must be decided on with Jesus/God as the deciding factor and we are sure to reach where we are going. Beautiful pictures! Thanks for sharing, Elizabeth.

    Like

  4. Freedom, by the way permalink
    21/03/2012 3:14 am

    Love the poems, love the photos. When I first began reading your post I immediatly thought of the Robert Frost poem and scrolling down–there it was!
    And the quote, “You seldom sit at a crossroads and know its a crossroads…” Wow, is that ever true. You can usually only see them in the rearview mirror.

    Like

  5. 21/03/2012 3:55 am

    at first I learned the meaning of the word CROSSROADS
    via blues lyrics of ROBERT JOHNSON …

    Like

  6. 21/03/2012 3:56 am

    Like

  7. 21/03/2012 3:57 am

    Even at my age …retirement years…definitely would be called “at a crossroad” in my life…so many changes…so many decisions…Yes!…life is neverending and always changing…How wonderful!

    Like

  8. 21/03/2012 4:11 am

    Beautiful! very evocative imagery – especially that first one in the snow, really get the feeling that this journey is a lonely one for some.

    Like

  9. 21/03/2012 4:12 am

    I learned that there is absolutely no pint in making plans. John Lennon said it best: ‘Life is what happens when you’re making plans.’

    Like

    • 21/03/2012 4:18 am

      True to a certain extent but someone else once said: ‘If you fail to plan, you plan to fail.’ We should make plans I believe but not at the cost of the present. 🙂

      Like

  10. 21/03/2012 5:12 am

    Plans are the most humbling experience of all – we have to make them and they usually fail at least in part so we have to make more and then they fail too and so our lives are made up with the jigsaw pieces of the plans and bits of life.
    Lovely post, Elizabeth. I never heard of Joyce Sutphen before but loved that poem – thanks.

    Like

  11. 21/03/2012 5:19 am

    Life is the best teacher of the pointlessness of long-term plans.

    Re Trayvon – we have just had a similar tragedy here in Sydney with the killing of a Brazilian student – very sad

    Like

  12. 21/03/2012 7:27 am

    Thanks for the mention of my cross-road pieces in your related articles section! I love the way you have put together this post! While all the poems are great images of the idea of standing on the crossroads, Robert Frost will probably always remain dearest to my heart. Thanks also for introducing me to poets that I’m not familar with. That’s what’s great about cyberspace and blogging to me: my horizons keep on expanding.
    As to the crossroads, I’ve taken some steps forward on some paths and have had to double back on others. But now I’m inspired to revisit my cross road blogs and bring the ideas forward.

    Like

  13. 21/03/2012 8:27 am

    Thank you so much, Eliz! Your posts are so insightful and absolutely breathtaking photography is always a part of them. 🙂
    I think we are always at a crossroads…every moment in life we are making choices about how we perceive our lives and how we react to what others say and do…and then there are the “life” choices…job, marriage or not, children or not. And the choice-making doesn’t slow down as we get older. 🙂 The wonderful thing though…is that we can almost always make different choices and take a different path…not without pain or discomfort, sometimes, but we can change our lives if we so choose. 🙂

    Like

  14. 21/03/2012 9:36 am

    Life can present you with crossroads very unexpectedly. I’ve had a few of those in the last few years and have had to make drastic life changes. They can be very uncomfortable, but we move forward.

    Like

  15. thirdhandart permalink
    21/03/2012 10:12 am

    My sincere condolences to Trayvon Martin’s family…
    From personal experience, I can say that neighborhood watch people aren’t always the best candidates to watch the neighborhood.
    I totally agree that: “Whatever happens, we must never be silent even while we wait; especially where injustice has left its mark… that is where growth lies.”

    Like

  16. 21/03/2012 11:22 am

    Lovely post today!
    I think the true secret is this: It doesn’t matter which road we take… what matters is that we don’t regret going left instead of right. That we don’t lament the what if’s and if only’s. Instead to embrace our path and make the best of it. Until the next crossroads!

    Like

  17. babs50nfab permalink
    21/03/2012 11:31 am

    I’ve had too many crossroads in my life to count. It never gets easier but faith in the universe to guide me usually helps.
    b

    Like

  18. 21/03/2012 5:24 pm

    I just tagged you, Elizabeth.. =D check out my blog and find out about it.

    Like

  19. 21/03/2012 6:46 pm

    As well as Trayvon Martin, please also spare some tears for the 30 or so Jamaicans who have been killed by the police (elderly men, teenage girls among them) since the year began – and the 300 or so who have been murdered, on our little island.

    Like

  20. 21/03/2012 8:49 pm

    “Two roads diverged in a wood, and I–
    I took the one less traveled by,
    And that has made all the difference”
    Robert Frost said it so well. It is easy to follow the crowd. It is easy to choose the safe road…
    I begged God a few years ago to allow me to go on the easy road. I stood at the crossroads a long time, waiting… until I could honestly surrender and say.. “but your will be done…” The answer came immediately and I was walking along a difficult road for a few years. That was then and now I am so glad I took that road. God is faithful.

    Like

  21. 21/03/2012 11:09 pm

    I love all your crossroad images! I did read the Robert Frost poem before but not the others. Many crossroads in my life but the most memorable would have to be the day God became important enough in my life and I said yes, I will follow You. Thank you Eliz!

    Like

  22. 21/03/2012 11:30 pm

    Ah I guess we all reach those crossroads some time or other.I’ve had a few and have always had to wait patiently for the answer. Limbo can be very uncomfortable but its worth it in the end. I’m sure your next path will open up soon and you will be able to stride forward knowing you have chosen well. These poems are lovely and all new to me so thank you 🙂

    Like

  23. Bree permalink
    22/03/2012 3:41 am

    Life is one huge crossroad and we jump in with all we have. I really love this post.
    B

    Like

  24. 22/03/2012 5:11 am

    Oh this is so beautifully composed, Elizabeth. I find it very inspirational especially as I move into my “new decade”–I spent an hour with a good friend last night discussing how we are at crossroads! We have the opportunity to make decisions that will affect many areas of our lives going forward. I’m going to send her your post! Really lovely! Debra

    Like

  25. 22/03/2012 2:05 pm

    Sometimes we KNOW which way to GO . . . but are reluctant to leave the FAMILIAR for the UNCERTAIN.

    Every time I’ve leaped . . . the NET has appeared. Good luck, E!

    Like

  26. 22/03/2012 3:57 pm

    Elizabeth,
    Love this post. The collection of photos and writings beautifully tell a life story. Everyone has been at a crossroads, is at a crossroads, or will be at one in the future. Blessings!

    Like

  27. 23/03/2012 6:15 am

    Great Post… we all face times in our lives when tough decisions must be made. Thank the Lord the guidance He gives to us as we travel down the road of life!
    Lord bless you

    Like

  28. 23/03/2012 10:43 am

    The second half of MY life is spent in writing and loving and working for peace and harmony. I am way down that road previously not taken!

    Like

  29. 23/03/2012 1:30 pm

    Isn’t there a saying somewhere that man makes plans and God laughs?

    Like

  30. 23/03/2012 6:01 pm

    The roads in your pictures reveal a strong resemblance to the roads here, in Virginia. Our ‘give way’ signs are yellow with black letters, and say ‘yield’. Other than that, it would be hard to know you weren’t in America looking at your landscapes and such. I like the poetry that accompanies your photos. It all comes down to two little letters, doesn’t it … ‘if’… the most powerful two combined letters in the English Alphabet, I dare say. … as in “If, I’d taken a different road”. I enjoy this posting considerably. Thank you for sharing.

    Like

  31. 23/03/2012 8:44 pm

    This post is very relevant to me, as I’m on a crossroads myself now.
    Thank you for sharing, my lovely friend! 🙂

    Subhan Zein

    Like

  32. 25/03/2012 7:48 pm

    Very timely, Elizabeth. I’m at one now!

    Like

Trackbacks

  1. Those dreaded crossroads… « Writing = Passion
  2. The Road to Someday Leads to the Town of Nowhere | M•Power
  3. No Decision is a Decision « The Giggling Monkey

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