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A New Take On “Happy”

I had the most amazing woman read me a poem at our spontaneous lunch together earlier this week. I’m usually not a poem sort of person, but this made my pulse quicken and my eyes dance with knowing. I think I even panted a bit.

Why? Because these women – the woman reading it, the woman who wrote it – were singing a song that spoke deeply to my soul. Having just come off of running the best retreat of my life, it also helped me to find words to describe what I had witnessed among the women that weekend.

A potent and electrifying type of happiness.

Up until this reading, I hadn’t given the word “happy” so much as a second glance…it felt like a wonder bread of a description – banal and fluffy. Certainly not in the same league as the words I hang with such as “ecstatic”, “transcendent” or “effervescent”. But I stand corrected.

If this is happy, I want to be a card-carrying member of that club.

“Happy” does me – and the women I am blessed to work with – right. If you’re a skeptic like I was, go ahead, read on. Tell me this doesn’t describe you.

Dithyramb of a Happy Woman
by Anna Swir

Song of excess,
strength, mighty tenderness,
pliant ecstasy.
lovingly dancing.

I quiver as a body in rapture,
I quiver as a wing,
I am an explosion,
I overstep myself,
I am a fountain,
I have its resilience.
a thousand excesses,
song of gushing strength.

There are gifts in me,
flowerings of abundance,
curls of light are sobbing,
a flame is foaming, its lofty ripeness
is ripening.
Oceans of glare,
rosy as the palate
of a big mouth in ecstasy.

I am astonished
up to my nostrils, I snort,
a snorting universe of astonishment
inundates me.
I am gulping excess, I am choking with fullness,
I am impossible as reality.

No shit, right? I know. It had me at hello, too.