Archive | September, 2013

driving lessons

27 Sep

the chariot

The body is a thing itself

which wishes to survive.

We might not always imagine this so –

but try getting in the car with a new driver.

Watch yourself tighten and grip

any solid thing you can find.

Listen to yourself inhale and exhale with difficulty.

The movie your mind is showing on the screen –

A Hundred Different Ways to Die in a Crash.

The very same girl who cannot keep her room clean

is setting out into the very adult task of operating heavy machinery

while still under the influence of adolescence.

She’s actually doing well;

cautious is she after she turned down the radio;

careful is she now that she switched from platform heels.

Imagined myself detached from my existence, did I –

from this body, this life?

Not hardly.

This body has a mind of its own that says

I want to go on.

I do not wish to crash and burn.

This job calls for an even voice,

even breath –

while what is really happening is this –

a  mind and a body wrestle

in the passenger seat beside

a learning curve in motion.

I linger here on

a right of passage as common as standing up,

as learning to walk  –

but just as well might be

leaping from a tall building

and leaving no note behind.

saturday morning blessing

21 Sep

bumbling away from wretched

17 Sep

cave face

how few words

do I know

to say

what I want to say.

Deprived of any real language,

I am choking on a blockage

of unexpressed experience.

Still, it seems, there are caverns

of what

I cannot enter.

I stand at the opening and gaze,

into…what’s here?

I rub (caress, de-skin my hands on) the rock walls

that I can reach.

The match blows out –

my hips get stuck;

watch me shimmy back from the threshold.

How do I convey regret

even for a passing thought,

for daring to long?

Worse yet,

how can I express a wish to disappear,

a shame of being in a body?

What is a word for longing for the void?

What is a word for stepping into the dark womb –

shivering naked (pale skinned, goose pimpled, embryonic)

stupid certain of a love that flows even here?

How do you say demasking –

for standing alone with nothing to say?

Where comes the courage to remain standing –

to remain there at the cave door?

Who dares me to carry on?

The comic book, lightbulb epiphany is that:

the cave i cannot enter

is inside of me –

but inside out.

Stiller than even breath,

love isn’t just here;

it flows



It appears as if an explosion has occurred in my daughter’s bedroom

14 Sep

room explosion

and this too shall pass.

Life is a messy endeavor.

Humor helps.  Want to laugh with me?

The poor girl.

I wouldn’t want to face this mess!

Her nature it seems is to drop things as she goes; she has yet to learn to befriend herself by keeping her things neat, organized, available, clean.  I would love for her to learn this – for my benefit sure, but mostly for herself.

Her mad scrambles for a particular shirt, a pair of shoes, a misplaced homework assignment are difficult, frenetic scenes to witness.

I do lapse into hands on hips moments.  I lapse into solving the problem for her.  I lapse into detached apathy.  I can be found to think the thought she will never get this and we who live with her will pay the price – I shrug, I shut the door, I sigh, I laugh.  I detach from the idea that the state of her room reflects my parenting ability.

What started out messy, when I left town last Thursday, has turned into frightful.  Maybe she is getting ready for Halloween.    If the police were to enter the house unannounced, they would mark this room a crime scene.  They would look for the thieves who turned it upside down looking for money.  They would call social services.

The drum beat in her head  is her own.  I understand my job more and more as a fellow traveler with her along the road is to stand back for her to learn through natural results of her own behavior and choices and yet to also help her find her own way, gently.

I have offered to set the alarm super early tomorrow to assist – not take over – but to offer hands for picking up, return her to the system I tried to create for her when she was in NYC  or perhaps to help her to come up with her own system.

We are only here in our lives for such a short while.  Having a place where things go seems to me a good way to enjoy the ride – but that may not be her journey.   Meanwhile, let’s close the door and enjoy some Billy Collins!

tasting it

13 Sep


An adventure with friends, teachers, mountains, an ocean, food, plants, an elder, wise cat, a chaise by a window, a seat at the table with many.  This was  much for a solo flyer.

Now I’m back.  Now I am returning to the day to day busyness of my life at home but changed yet again, refreshed and exhausted.

There are times I can recede and watch myself from an angle a bit above the tree line.

My deep and energetic friend (who often appears and reflects a glimpse of me around the next bend in times of great pivoting) led me on adventures into spiritual and material realms – and in doing so, led my being to return to its body.

Oh, I remember – this is what it means to be alive?

Besides the habit to detach, I also often make choices in regards to practicality in order to be careful with money; eventhough, I learned  as a small girl, a bargain isn’t always what it seems.  My grandmother was a  model in buying a few good things that would last a long time instead of stacks of cheap crap.    Her cashmere coat hangs in my closet,  still holding great structure and elegance.

A rich and rewarding small bite of quality is more engaging and lasting than a whole bag of junk.  Think:

cheetos vs. imported stilton

lipton vs. Steven Smith Teamaker

mortons vs. himalayan pink salt crystals

The Alive Being of Maren often helps me remember  to relish the experience of being in a body – a practice of enjoying the cake, ordering the snippet of delish, luxuriating in the time of a sugar scrub or a destination in the woods,  smelling the ginger as it is chopped, breaking out the china plates for no reason.  Living fully and deeply is presence without the judgemental mind reeling and railing in a battle with cost versus goodness.

Where does the beauty come in?  Where is the time for seeing – really seeing the beauty in the eyes the craft the country half a world away.  Can we allow the gifting of such beauty to help us to stop dead in our tracks and take it in – take in the intention behind every object, moment, encounter;  gifting is as perceivable as light is to the eyes.  the world can come alive in a single moment of stillness and receptivity.

What do i carry in my pocket?  Pebbles from another ocean?  porcelain mice to drop in hidden gateways along the path?   Do i listen to the music in the air?  Do i watch the ant make its way? Do I hear The Verve singing to me in the coffee shop?  Do I listen to the crow.  The man so on the edge in his projected dialogue sings along to our conversation as we walk.  Do i sit and quiet when i brew a cup of tea?  Do I choose a teabag in a box of ordinary or Oh my gosh, that Steven Smith Teamaker who sends my tongue into raptorous joy?

My mouth says to me, well, yeah, that is what I been trying to tell you!

marga has chosen a life path immersed in the chaotic energy of teenagers, right now.  I pull back and away from the frenetic energy, when actually the alchemy here is learning to stay in it,  transmuting!   Commuting moments in the car  can make space for healing conversations, stolen moments on other sides of town morph into soul encounters, awkward chunks of time provide walks in nature.

What is offered in the now?

Trees sometimes offer caves  in their trunks for crossing over – portals of roots for transporting the self deep into the earth – bark for rough and bracing tactile awakening.  If your leaves are spread against the sky receiving direct signals from the sun and your roots are in the dark underbelly of the composting earth – are you not the ultimate yin and yang of balance? – how do I end up here – suddenly prostrate at the foot of the trees?

a blog post is not a unified thing… the words flow where they will – and though I stand and teach the idea of the unification of ideas for students’ essays – i allow myself to flow where ever – capitals randomly applied.  Dashes to break up words instead of periods.  This space in this window is a fuzzy place between brain states – a place i can forget for a bit the rules – the linear flow – and find myself merging with the tree  where roots and earth enter into mysterious exchanges – finding a vein I can ride up the elevator of life in the trunk and bask on the solar paneled   roof  of leaves against sky – listening to the life going on below in my belly, in my roots – to a place where all veins meet.

ripe fruit

1 Sep

We are such easy pickins’ – humans.

We wear our desires on our faces.

We project our imagined weakness

from a bullhorn.

We tell everything we know from our eyes,

and we hardly

ever blink.

Occasionally, a man wears disdain

and distances himself like a toddler

full of no, but even that

is a challenge as cute as stomping feet.

We sit behind desks and ask to be taught

that which we can easily teach ourselves.

We prostrate at the feet of the famous


the physically pretty.

We fawn at the hem of the fashions

and yet

there is something so powerful in our surrendering.

We sign contracts pledging  our loyalty without asking to see proof.

We give and lose and give again.

One leg up, one leg down, one leg up again.

The power of the human

lies in the soft soft underbelly

of vulnerability.

There is power in our foolish ways of trusting,

in our back resting, belly up offering we give

in our hopes for a gentle rub.

The hidden rulers, which seem separate but are not,

We are thee, too,

with their/our painful daggers

to cut into that soft flesh – we

don’t understand the strength in the weakness.

They/we shun the trust and the beauty

of the stupid creators that we are – yet

They too are in a type of sleep –

a dream of forgetting –

delighting in a puppet play where they pull all the strings

yet leap from their own shadows.

The mystery of the humans will never make sense.

How can a swaddled baby be more powerful than a corporate Titan

towering in his empire built on human backs?

Yet it is.

And we are all expressions of the same

same same…what?




I don’t know – obviously

I’m stretching.

This I do know, but I don’t know how…

The helpless, clueless,


newborn idiot

has only to beckon


he can reign down blessings.

When the sleeping infants wake,

what wonders will  unfold.

(I keep tinkering with these words – they are driving me crazy.  I want to delete but I will let them stand now – I witness in myself the learning that comes through words, reflection, edits, flow, letting go.  words scribbled with the end of a stick into the sand just before the tide comes in taking the words out to sea:)

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