Now I Become Myself

Dissolved and Shaken by Anna Leigh Biedenbender

What does it mean to be yourself – your authentic self – to become who you are?  I suspect only poets attempt an answer.  May Sarton attempts such an answer with a poem about “the journey toward becoming fierce with reality” as Parker J. Palmer puts it.

Sarton is aware that becoming oneself takes time, “many years and places”.  Becoming oneself often requires being “dissolved and shaken” in order live into becoming one’s self:

Now I Become Myself
by May Sarton

Now I become myself. It’s taken
Time, many years and places;
I have been dissolved and shaken,
Worn other people’s faces,
Run madly, as if Time were there,
Terribly old, crying a warning,
“Hurry, you will be dead before—”
(What? Before you reach the morning?
Or the end of the poem is clear?
Or love safe in the walled city?

(Excerpted from Collected Poems, 1930–1993. Read the full poem here.)


For more see, “Remind me who I am“.

About R.H. (Rusty) Foerger

As I enter the third third of life, I am becoming aware of the role of elders today “to enlarge spiritual vision, being devoted to prayer, living in the face of death, as a living curriculum of the Christian life” (Dr. James M. Houston). I am a life long and life wide learner who seeks to: *decipher the enigma of our worth *rescue from the agony of prayerlessness *integrate spiritual friendship.
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