Summer is a season of fullness. It invites both play and rest. Creation and incubation. Exploration and retreat. Wildness and cultivation. Journeys and homecomings. It’s a season expansive enough to hold all of these ebbing and flowing rhythms. I’ve noticed that it gets very quiet in our yard in the afternoon. Birds, bunnies, and squirrels honor the need to forage and play in the cooler hours, while seeking shade and stillness in the heat of mid-day. They tune into their innate wisdom, following their summer rhythms and retreating as a form of self care.
In the spirit of rhythms and self care, I have been contemplating a seasonal sanctuary—a place inspired by wisdom from the natural world and our wisdom within. A space that honors the rhythms of this season as well as our needs and desires. A haven that restores the body. And a harbor of inner hospitality that sustains the heart. This may be an actual location or an imaginary, metaphorical space. Or perhaps a combination of both.
When I envision my summer sanctuary, there is flowing water, shade trees, and the softness of the evening as the sun rests on the horizon. There is respite from suburban noise. There are life giving books, a blank journal, and my favorite pen. A bowl of freshly picked blueberries is close at hand. In this dwelling, I savor the quiet and listen to the voice within. Wildflowers grow freely here, bordering this half-real, half-imagined sanctum of wild peace.
As you ponder your summer sanctuary consider what nourishes body and spirit as well as your natural rhythms. You may want to use the prompts below to explore these ideas through writing or imagery such as a collage, sketch, or watercolor.
A Summer Sanctuary
I imagine . . . (a place in nature, a landscape, or an imaginary space)
With scents of . . .
Sounds of . . .
Textures of . . .
Surrounded by . . .
I am nourished in this space by . . .
A place where I . . .
This season invites . . .
My sanctuary welcomes . . .
My hope is that you will seek out restorative places, find pockets of sanctuary throughout your day, and honor the ebbs and flows as you embrace all the hues of summer.
May This Be a Place
by Stacey M. Hayes
May this be a place of respite when you are weary,
Inspiration when you are stuck,
Calm when there is chaos.
A place of quenching coolness and inner warmth.
A space to reflect, dream, and create.
May you find peace and delight here.
May this be a place of embrace that lovingly holds all that you are.