Awakened

In advanced age, my health worsening, I woke up in the middle of the night, and experienced a happiness so intense and perfect that in my life I had only felt its premonition. And there was no reason for it. It didn’t obliterate consciousness; the past which I carried was there, together with my grief. And it was suddenly included, was suddenly part of the whole. As if a voice were repeating: ‘You can stop worrying now; everything happened just as it had to. You did what was assigned to you, and you are not required anymore to think of what happened long ago.’ The peace I felt was a closing of accounts and was connected with the thought of death. The happiness on this side was like an announcement of the other side. I realized that this was an undeserved gift and I could not grasp by what grace it was bestowed on me.

Czeslaw Milosz

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