Archive | December, 2013

get over myself

29 Dec

machina_sn_oacute_w_may_by_frodok-d5yk3kv

even at the beginning

edge of memory,

she was here,

making absurd

through the observing:

siblings,

settings,

ill-fitting clothes of every era,

Polaroid snapshot gatherings,

grass and apple trees,

clubs and cliques and tube tops,

imagined crushes,

shameful invisibility.

Do you remember, she says, oh never mind,

we know together of

getting lost on purpose,

breaking down beside roads,

hating picnics for the trouble of it all,

or sucking the stuckness

of traffic jam hours –

inching inching inching

wanting to open the door and run away

leaving a car, a purse, a self behind?

Was she holding me in a

haze of ether,

as I was coming to and going out,

dreaming of awake,  awake and dreaming?

Here’s the gift of all these years –

freedom has always been mine.

The prison of duty was self made, by listening to the song:

do as we wish and good things will come to you…

I knew a song so much better than that –

Her hum was that song

remember – not to forget

in the comic book, flip-through life –

of confusion.

How else would I know to change except through discomfort?

How else would I come to know that me is

one instrument, learning to play itself,

except for the sullied

fingers across my keys – the discordant disymphony?

I feel the ivory for myself;

I may play one note for the next 10 years

who gives a goodgoddamn, ain’t nothing but my own composition

and never was anything else at all –

a sound wave disappearing from the ears

only

to become truly seen.

The face in the back becomes the face in the fore –

a journey to the laughter

that I AM.

yen and yang, my daughters

26 Dec

chloe eden nyc dinosaur

 If you get too close to the mirror, your eyes will cross.

Of course I KNOW my girls, but somehow, separation helps me to actually see them.

And I see myself.

Things that come in packages of two often express polarity.  Daughter duality  is part of my learning.  They each reflect opposites in their ways of thinking, expressing, hurting, overcoming….basically existing in ways that directly reflect me as well.  I can see the strengths and flaws I contain within my being playing out in the reflection of these two girls.  What a show, what a combustable concoction, what a well-written play!

I see the slot-machine lever pulls in the traits of their genetic, environmental, personal choices…a playing out of variety, contrast, expanse.    Where one is extroverted, the other is introverted.  Where one intuits, the other logics it out.  Where one seems to absorb information through the ethers, the other has to read the chapter and memorize it word for word.  Where one wants to judge, the other wants to allow.  One, indoor, one outdoor.  One science, one art.  Of course, they do not exist in a vacuum of one thing and not the other, or in a snapshot that never changes, but they do seem to have tendencies that swing into opposites whenever possible.

They also reflect to me the truth of connection and separation that this life allows us, if we are willing to do the work of it.  I force me to see where I understand and where I do not.

This teaching is impossible to put into words.  It is as intense as I can ever imagine in both fun and pain.  I cannot ever walk away.  I am here for the long haul and in knowing the safety of my presence, they  let it all fly – they  unleash – and thus I am granted the fiery, fierce eternal mirror of my own truth in a way that is way beyond a partnering relationship which is based on sharing the journey but with a freedom to leave.  

Wow.  Cannot leave.  I have to look them and myself in the face.  Parent is much the same as committing to live a life in this body.  Barring extreme action – we are here – we must live our lives.   What a gift they have given to me on a deep soul level – this walking to adulthood with my kindred, these girls, by choice to begin with, then by force.

By next year, this whole dynamic will be shifting as one goes to college, and the other stays home for a bit longer.  What seems unbearable now, will no longer be pressing by next year.  The frustration of differences will be become an attractor, I imagine, by the heart softening of distance.

I miss their noise, their mess, their complexities, their joys, and even their suffering this week – but goodness, a little time alone is so very good.

How’s this for contrast :0

stars are not alone in the sky

24 Dec

frodo-walking-under-starlight-drawingOn the couch, as I respond to a call from my daughter, which then requires some follow up calls, I watch the light fade in the sky through the windows.  Now the sky is dark.  Rain starts falling.

I am alone in my house.  I am alone and connected to everything.

I see my own creation of spaciousness flying toward me  now, a wonderful, old friend surprising me by its arrival.    I am  engulfed.   This is very good.  I make this happen.

In previous lives I have known, being alone through a holiday season full of expectations might have  looked a bit lonely, but  I imagine anyone who stops by here, you great life improvisors, would see a solitary holiday in a different light.  Of course,  “light has no mind for repetition…” according to John O’Donohue, as I am reminded of here  where Sister M is also the DJ at my private party tonight.

There is no such thing as lonely.

There could never be such a thing as lonely again.

I am in heaven here alone, while also…

I release heaven here on earth through my very being – which is so clear now that I have given myself the space to see that this is so.  I heard an interview with Mark Nepo on my long drive yesterday.     His voice and words flooded my chest with warm remembrance.

LITTLE BY LITTLE (Mark Nepo)

Some days I plod like an ant so focused on the grain above my head that the next step holds all of life, and I feel in the lineage of slaves pushing the next stone up an unfinished pyramid. Then, without reason, life opens and flows with an unearned ease that I can’t describe. When it leaves, like a breeze of Spirit, I feel renewed and certain that God is in both the moment of lift and the moment of ease. In the moment before pain and after. So I’ve given up wishing for ease and running from pain. Everything on Earth moves by this inching between ease and pain. It’s how we grow. And praising both, surrendering to both, accepting both is the work of love. Little by little, the way an ameba pulses under a microscope, the soul within a human being pulses like a faint star throbbing in place. Our spirit seems to emanate as our psychology constricts. The contrast makes us glow and shimmer. It’s useless to want to bypass this journey. For it’s only by inhabiting it that we chance to know Eternity, not as some far off place reserved for saints, but as the Numinous Delta in which the very marrow of life forms and reforms. To live in this unending dynamism, between being and becoming, is the path of transformation. More than finding Heaven on Earth, we are asked to release Heaven by living here on Earth.

(My choice for words in bold.)

In these days of spaciousness, I fall into the arms of Peace while also meeting Challenge dead in her fierce(ened) face.   I no longer feel quick sanded by the pain; there is more ease is in the flow even in the midst of challenge, knowing this is part of the pulsing of the star that I am. 🙂   I am up here twinkling in that very same sky, this holiday season, with an overhead look down upon you all –  you with family, with friends, active, and festive, or perhaps you are alone like me, spacious and beautiful remembering with me as we go through our Holy days.   Big Starshine love travels from me to you and from you to me as we hang here in the seasonless sky –

I know you to be well in our togetherness!   So so shiny are we! 

one, not two

15 Dec

solo trip

Copyright © Leszek Bujnowski.

You  allow, you invite the lesson, you sit in silence as life takes its course, you give up the illusion of control, you do the next thing that arises.  You stop pointing fingers, you  think, you look within………….and yet nothing gives.

Some things seemed created for the purpose of being intensely worrisome, yet they are not deadly enough to put you out of here.

Some problems push the buttons of hopeless feelings; they leave you staring up at a  impassable cliff while you physically feel yourself  sinking into quicksand.

Don’t we all have  problems like this?  The kind for which you cannot find the key to unlock to save your life.

These challenges seem the very things that force us to step into a conversation with the mystery.  There is no where else to go.

Remembering that every problem is spiritual in nature, always, all ways, is not always what I want  to hear, but until I remember this, I am stuck.  

Excerpted from Depak Chopra’s book Spiritual Solutions: Answers to Life’s Greatest Challenges

Spirituality begins with a decisive answer… It says that life isn’t random. There is pattern and purpose inside every existence. The reason that challenges arise is simple: to make you more aware of your inner purpose.

If the spiritual answer is true, there should be a spiritual solution to every problem— and there is. The answer doesn’t lie at the level of the problem, even though most people focus all their energies at that level. The spiritual solution lies beyond. When you can take your awareness outside the place where struggle is ever-present, two things happen at the same time: your awareness expands, and with that, new answers begin to appear. When awareness expands, events that seem random actually aren’t. A larger purpose is trying to unfold through you…
…The first step in this process is recognizing what level of awareness you are working from right now. Every time a challenge comes your way, whether it is about relationships, work, personal transitions, or a crisis that demands action, there levels of awareness. Become aware of them, and you will take a huge step toward finding a better answer.”

Problems are mirrors:  some are showing me where I’ve forgotten you and me are the same.   My student who drove me up the wall, in the end, was an expression of me.  We finished our dance, and she taught me where I still saw us as two.   Firmness or softness in reaction to her became a non-issue,  laughing or soothing, feeding or withholding, all these dualities and everything in between all flowing clearly without seeing difference in the end, because in that one tiny mirror, I see what is what.  She is me.

Laughing At the Word Two
Only
That Illumined
One
Who keeps
Seducing the formless into form
Had the charm to win my
Heart.
Only a Perfect One
Who is always
Laughing at the word
Two 
Can make you know
Of
Love.
 Hafiz
From: ‘The Gift’ 
Translated by Daniel Ladinsky

The answer to my health, the answer to my relationships, the answer to my work, my house,  my flow:  one.  I am one with my body, all other people, all objects, all nature, my space, my moments, my unfolding life – all me.

I think it is not just love your neighbor as yourself, but love your neighbor – she is you.  Love every thing; everything is me.    (Am I one upping Jesus?  God,  how ridiculous am I?:)

 Today, Hafiz and Dr. Chopra are my old friends, voices I love to have in my ear, clues sent just for me in the dance.
Now for the day.  Listening to the rain.  Letting the crisp air wake me up to the space that has been holding me all this time, a place with no thoughts.  Let me feel my arms and legs move; let me clear away the piles of chores put off for today.  Let me be present in the moment with those I choose to engage with.  Let me  Listen for the sizzle of energy in the air  – the sizzle of All Possible – in every moment. Let me be one, not two; let me zoom out and become the solution.  Let me be grateful for the prickly problems I’ve created for such holy moments as these.

what makes the world go round?

13 Dec

All of us have experienced often the vulnerability of clinging to the money raft on a stormy sea of change!

We are all students of supply and demand.  I have always had enough while also close to the extremes of way more than enough and extremes of need.  I have danced in many arenas and suited up this girl  well enough to fit into them all.   Ease is nice, but stress I found was actually higher in the higher dollar days I knew.  Imagine that!  I had more options, or more created options, that complicated the world I inhabited – I had to learn to navigate for myself the hard way.

Nowadays, I choose to live and interact in the realms where people have known a bit more struggle as opposed to the upwardly mobile movers and shakers.  I have had more eye-to-eye realness in a dollar store than on the she she sides of town.   I  also recognize and am grateful that among the money obsessed, I learned to be myself more clearly.  I learned to walk along my own way; I learned to find the needle of the others along the path in the haystack land of striving .  I got to watch the wheels of karma turn, sometimes, too.

Close to the bone, we have an opportunity to be real.  The struggle can embitter, or the struggle can break open the hard little seed of fear – we can share humanity in the bread line or at the tea party, though the tea party is a bit tougher to enjoy, for me.

The ebb and flow of needs met seems best left to such mysteries as the sea – I move up and down the sandy shore with the rhythms of the earth – I work hard – I try not to worry – I try to share – and not waste – I enjoy the pleasures when they come, often seeking out little indulgences for my tongue, my eyes, my skin that add beauty and joy to my experience and do not cause a moment’s hesitation of ambivalence or guilt.  What is guilt? 🙂

I started my 2nd job yesterday at a senior recreation center – and while the pay is unbelievably low – I liked it.  I feel somewhere deep inside, this is a logical next step  to something else I cannot see yet.   I can teach and also help a bit in a low stress place, full of sunshine through the windows and from within the people who come there.  I feel grateful.

I stare into the fog as it hovers this morning – unable to see but able to sense the green growth spurred on by the bright sun that is obscured but never leaves.

the exotic ripening of the finer sex

5 Dec

Woman-with-Crow.24x24.mm.2012 - Copy

Holly Roberts

seeding from within

for the birthing of yourself

this time –

You will

burst through your own damned skin,

exploding the social shell

into a mess of flowering  pulp;

midair

you

take shape into flight.

You strange and wonder full fruit –

filling the air with your juice,

for the hungry

who can only long

with painful bellies

unsure if they actually saw you

take your wings

into the sky –

Are you

never to land

on mundane, again?

Joy calls from you now

as your span stirs the air.

You circle up –

you orbit out –

a spiral map for the

gaping below.

smashing pumpkins

3 Dec

“If you can see your path laid out in front of you step by step, you know it’s not your path. Your own path you make with every step you take. That’s why it’s your path.”
― Joseph Campbell

Pumpkins_by_live_laugh_love_draw

There is NO TRAIL.

Behind my parents house lies a golf coarse, and behind that, a forested hill leading up to a tower.

My 81-year-old dad, confident in his newly installed hip socket, was sure there was a trail leading up to the tower, so off we, Eden, dad and me, went in search of a way up the mountain.  No watches, no phones, my dad using an old golf putter as his walking stick.

The trail proved illusive.  So we went off-trail through tall grasses, new growth woods full of brambles;  we followed some dead-ending paths, and finally we found an old growth forest that led back to the golf course and home.  We wandered  looking for a way up, but instead found our own way, without a clear end point, adventuring into unknown territories, right out the back door.

Eden scrambled ahead looking for possible trails, as we explored.  At times, we found washed-out gullies to climb; we held brambles for each other so they didn’t snap and catch us painfully; we separated and called to each other through the trees; my dad and I watched Eden roll down hills.  We found a spot where someone had dumped 10 or more pumpkins, still bright orange despite the below freezing nights.  Eden tried to smash a few against a tree, then realized they were nowhere near rotting.  She carried two back down from which to scoop out and roast seeds at my parents’ house.

This time in the woods was sandwiched by large gatherings of far-flung family.  The way my energy flowed in the woods exploring as opposed to the talking and catching up could not be more disparate.  There is something so organic and right about tromping about, making our own way in the natural world, yet I have to make these moments happen – often pushing my will by force and rejecting invitations,  chores,  obligations – recognizing the trueness of doing what I enjoy most.    I separate from the world and become whole again in these spaces.  How wonderful it was to have my father and my daughter along for this adventure.

Time without agenda flows so magically.

We have so little teaching and guidance except that which we seek out on our own.  I tell my students and my kids often words about each of us making are own way, but sometimes it sounds just like nagging or preaching.    Eyes glaze over.

What is it like to flow in your own way in each moment?  My experience opens into more and more of a moment to moment flow as I am creating my life as a reflection of all that makes sense, not in my mind, but in my body, in my heart.  The intuitive truth starts dictating and shining through each unfolding now.  The people in my life now more clearly reflect acceptance as I have come to accept myself.  The activities that are allowed entrance are no longer something to dread, but are carefully chosen for their energetic nourishment.  Food, music, possessions, friends, doings – all a reflection and creation from within.

Making one’s own trail can appear in infinite ways – it may be in nature.   It may be in a low paying job serving others.  It may be care-giving,  making food, making fun, handing out opportunities, holding doors, holding my daughters hand as her toenail is cut out by the doctor.   It may be running to the pharmacy at 9pm for meds and cat food for the strays.  It may be a firm NO as a solid reflection of boundaries.  It may be a visit to the roaring ocean, a sandy butt, a look away  or a belly laugh of compassion.  A trail of one’s own defies simple explanation.  It is what occurs naturally in each organic next step toward home.

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