Happiness is not happiness

Happiness is not really happiness.

It’s more like attention, not being distracted by anything else.

Reigning in my mind so that it rests on one thing only, the thing before me

How many moments in a day does this happen?

There is always some thought, some preoccupation, some shred of a story always forming

Whisking me away from this moment which stands so naked and vulnerable before me,

Waiting to be seen. 


Happiness will never come, if the truth be told.

If I cannot even feel where I stand in this moment, see the ordinary things before my eyes

What future happiness do I think I will find?

My thoughts are like a bird circling high up in the sky, caught on the wind. 

If only it would drop back down, come to rest in this place where I stand.


All my worries, all my dreams, all my precious thoughts

that build this structure of my self

What if I could forget them,

 drop into an empty space, curious to see what  is there.

Alone with a nameless hunger, falling deeper into the asking


If I can slowly, gently let go of myself, like a dry leaf floating away on a breeze

Will I then arrive in this moment, a settler in my own life

With a permanent home and a place to belong?


And will I find you there,

and meet you with my full attention and presence

Which looks something like my true self,

Which looks something like happiness.


–Heather Johnson

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