Good Bones

As you read this, I am deep in the heart of a six-day silent retreat at Spirit Rock, grounding in the quiet and the chance to reconnect with inner peace.

I’m writing to you in advance, carrying the warmth of my heart into these words.

Poetry has always been a shelter for me, especially now that we’re in Dec. Winter – an introspective time of year.

I recently stumbled upon a poem that went viral a few years ago: – Maggie Smith’s “Good Bones.”


By Maggie Smith

Life is short, though I keep this from my children.

Life is short, and I’ve shortened mine in a thousand delicious, ill-advised ways, a thousand deliciously ill-advised ways

I’ll keep from my children.

The world is at least fifty percent terrible, and that’s a conservative estimate, though I keep this from my children.

For every bird there is a stone thrown at a bird.

For every loved child, a child broken, bagged, sunk in a lake. Life is short and the world is at least half terrible, and for every kind

stranger, there is one who would break you, though I keep this from my children.

I am trying to sell them the world.

Any decent realtor, walking you through a real shithole, chirps on

about good bones:

This place could be beautiful, right?

You could make this place beautiful.

This poem weaves together the reality of life’s challenges with a tender message of hope and transformation.


“Life is short, though I keep this from my children.”

Here, Maggie Smith touches on the fleeting nature of life, a truth we all hold gently. As entrepreneurs, we feel the preciousness of each moment.

Yet, like a nurturing parent, we aim to create a space of growth and resilience for those we guide.


“I’ve shortened mine in a thousand delicious, ill-advised ways…”

This line sings of the risks and choices that, while not always perfect, add flavor and depth to our lives. It’s a reminder of the beauty in our journey, in the leaps we take, and in the lessons we learn.


“The world is at least fifty percent terrible, and that’s a conservative estimate…”

Smith acknowledges the challenges of the world, mirroring the uncertainties we face in our ventures. Yet, in this acknowledgment, there is a call to remain hopeful and resilient.


“For every bird there is a stone thrown at a bird…”

The poem tenderly portrays the balance of joy and sorrow in life. In our entrepreneurial journey, we embrace the full spectrum, understanding that each experience enriches our story.


“I am trying to sell them the world…”

As leaders and visionaries, we resonate with the task of presenting a hopeful perspective, even amidst imperfection. It’s about seeing the potential for beauty and goodness in every situation.


“You could make this place beautiful.”

The poem closes with a powerful message of hope and the ability to transform. It reminds us that in our hands lies the capacity to shape our world, to turn challenges into opportunities for growth and beauty.

Silent retreats, like poetry, are a source of deep reflection and connection for me.

They allow me to step back from the noise and listen to the gentle whispers of my heart.

In these moments of stillness, I find clarity and a renewed sense of joy & purpose, reminding me of the importance of nurturing a hopeful spirit in all we do.

May we all carry this gentle, hopeful spirit in our hearts as we walk our paths.

Wishing you love and light always,


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Bradley Raider founded and currently directs MDT8 (short for meditate), a global organization that empowers entrepreneurs to know the importance of meditation to be better business owners.

In addition, as a teacher, award-winning filmmaker, and entrepreneur, his focus lies in seamlessly integrating consciousness expansion with creativity, productivity, and life purpose.

Further, having apprenticed with the esteemed Vedic knowledge master, Maharishi Vyasananda, Bradley has dedicated fifteen years to studying and practicing meditation’s subtle art and science.