Below the Surface

Breaking Point: How Much Water Pressure Can The Human Body Take?


“The bottom of the well. For many, this sentence brings the feeling of self-distrust. Only a few of us know that the deeper the hole you dig, the greatest treasures you may find.”
Alan Maiccon



To date, there has been a total of 229K deaths in the United States from COVID-19, and of course this continues to grow.

And so, as we can all imagine, there is now a deep tsunami of grief, moving and growing throughout the country and the world.

At this point, and on this scale, it may feel impossible to believe we can deal with any of it; however, David Whyte shares, that until each of us begins to slip beneath the surface of this grief, and into this deep change we have faced, we will never understand or discover the deep source of life, or receive the transformation and healing that is waiting for us all, in these dark waters below.



The Well of Grief – David Whyte

Those who will not slip beneath

the still surface on the well of grief,

turning down through its black water
to the place we cannot breathe,

will never know the source from which we drink,
the secret water, cold and clear,

nor find in the darkness glimmering,

the small round coins,
thrown by those who wished for something else.

27 thoughts on “Below the Surface

  1. Love this alternative approach, Karen, as it is indeed tough to handle the bad news that seems to come at us as though delivered from a fire hose. Trust Whyte (and you) to offer a wonderfully divergent perspective. Xox

    1. I’m smiling Lori and wondering what the alternative is to what you may think is an ‘alternative’ approach to grief? What are most people in the US doing to cope with such overwhelming news and grief each day? 💕💕

      1. Numbness, anger, denial. I am struggling mightily with anger at the moment. I am *not* an angry person by nature…at all…but seeing so many people behaving so selfishly and denying science makes me nuts. I am also beyond fatigued with the vitriol and divisiveness that seems to dominate everything these days. It’s exhausting. I find myself retreating more and more…spending a lot of time alone and in nature. It’s the only thing that seems to calm my nerves.

      2. Yes I can imagine the divisiveness Lori, especially with the election in full swing too. And I think why anger and denial never work, is simply because we are expelling and leaking our energy outwardly, trying to change others; or trying to change a situation we can’t control, rather than moving inwardly to shift what needs to be addressed in us first. Once we spend our energy on this, our outward perspective can change, even though we still understand we don’t have control. So yes, spend time in nature and stillness understanding you more, I promise it will allow more space for peace. 🙏🏻💕

  2. Thank you, Karen, for sharing David Whyte’s poem, “The Well of Grief.” As I struggle to understand how we as a nation have come to this point of brokenness, I have dared to venture into the “black water / to the place we cannot breathe.” The lies we have told ourselves for decades terrify and suffocate me. The glimmering “small round coins” of those of us who strive to be our better selves give me hope that we will someday surface towards the light.

    1. Change and healing begins in our world when we change and heal ourselves deeply. Often we hope it will happen when our outside circumstances change like a new president, or a new relationship, or a new home, however, this is an illusion. Dare to venture again and again, Rosaliene, I have ventured in this darkness many times, and I have discovered it is far more scarier to live above the surface.💕🌈

  3. Wow, Karen! Incredible!!
    I’ve been in the well. Even though they have been perhaps the most terrifying times in my life…it is where I learned so much.
    You are so right about the level of grief rising to a point that I swear I can feel it breathing!!
    Today is a big day in the States…don’t know what will happen or how people will react…but I feel it is really important.
    Hope you are well…stay safe! ❤

    1. I can imagine it’s hard to breathe! My thoughts are with everyone as you face this difficult uncertainty. Stay grounded, connected and safe too Lorrie. 💕🌈

      1. Thanks, Karen. There is a lot of fear in the aitr…many businesses boarding up. I was out and about today and the grocery stores are full and there are lines at the gas station…it is like we are preparing for a hurricane…kind of feels the same. And it isnlike a hurricane! And…I believe there IS a storm below us. Crazy year 2020.
        Stay well!! 💜

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