Tag Archives: Silence

Feeling So Groovy it Sucks :)

26 Oct

This writing feels didactic and I question why am I putting into words a philosophy of one? I don’t know. Maybe just a sticker on a map. Maybe a look in the mirror. For some reason, this morning, I’m covering myself in a humble patchwork quilt of pieces of practice\al philosophy gathered from one set of feet, one pair of eyes, marching through the time of a life in a body.

It’s okay – I’ll let it flow, for no good reason and then move on to the next thing…

Starting here: No matter how much circumstances seem contrary to okay, life is ultimately okay.

Okayness is true as seen from the small still point inside of me that is never not there.

This still point is within,  a radiant, patient sun inside the solar system of me around which everything in the show revolves. Remembering this point, learning to dwell from this point, gives me the stability of moving within the world with more spaciousness even in the moments that seem chaotic or in crisis. This space accepts me “back” to this point, no matter how long I’ve forgotten that I am dwelling here; thank goodness, it’s always accessible and open for business. We are always here, actually, but there is some aspect of taking on this life that allows us to forget. Mysterious this! 

Life is a ride, “a” not “THE” ride. Here, a clue in the articles – each one of us on a ride, the whole (of me and of us) ride is beyond my comprehension.

It used to seem like a long ride, but it is ever more clear that this ride is not very long at all.

The body has a mind of its own. It is best to recognize this and communicate with it (through it) by learning to dwell in the body’s awareness as much as possible. Wordless wisdom comes through the body suit – profound messages, information, and access to God (our spacious still point again) is through the body, not from somewhere else. Though it may feel like indigestion, a muscle cramp, dread in a seizing stomach, the body has a language all its own. I’ve been learning to inhabit this body garment and finally listen after so many years to the wordless words of a billion cells in symphony to make this ride of me.

I’ve been told I am loved, and I have enormous confirmations of this; however, some dynamic of this ride allows me to forget this, to feel so alone, and so vulnerable to harm, to hurt, to hopelessness.

The shifting of perspective – that’s it – changes what I think is happening. BUT hearing this idea might not help. This life is a 3d riddle, an optical illusion, a Escher painting lived.

What is real is difficult to determine, perhaps impossible to determine, with reason alone. Real is known within – when within is not obstructed by false thoughts which make real difficult to perceive. 

Breath centers.

Center knows truth because it is truth itself – our flame that can’t go out.

Until there is not breath, there is still  a chance one can clear obstruction to truth.

Other people and life circumstance (including leaky roofs, ahmmm) are a reflection of where I am and how I am perceiving. From the center point, I exist from a space from where, in interactions, I have a room that gives perspective in real time. I can see from this spot the deeper thread and zoomed out view at once more clearly  which gives me pause in micro-time before I move with words or action which provides more skill and ease and compassion. When I am not moving from this space, I can observe my tendency to rush or soothe or dismiss or avoid, as well, so all motion in the world is teaching at all times.

This is just some truth from this one spot along the way. Marking the map with “I am Here, Now” this morning, as it rains and shines and the temperature falls and rises – ever instructing our skin.  Blessings for us all, sisters and brothers.  Which version fits today?

walking on the fields of slaves

24 Jan

Closing eyes while facing the setting sun,

over marsh and salty creeks,
provides a primitive script
on the inside of my pink-skinned lids.
i was the cave dweller who carved
notches for the ones I’ve been.
i run my cursor over the alligator skin
encoded with the story of all time,
left here for me –
thinking there is no way
she will miss it, this time.

i see the structure of my mundane thoughts
solid like walls built on each side – but i can
push them back with my
shadowy arms.
my house is
a cardboard house, with folding lines preset
to make it gone in a new york minute.
WOLF may huff and puff –
but i tell him,
put your predatory mind at rest:


give you my house
and my piggie flesh too
no need for a scene.

listen to the drone of rush hour traffic
while my feet touch the land of original settlers.
blood and sweat in the dirt and air,
they are for dinner, whole.
I am thinking again
and the mind conjures
up a rule that I am only pulled down
by that which i have not healed – what
does that mean?
do I/i remember my days as slave,
as master,
beast and bird?

when i move in the world,

i have become
a piece of the sky
in a sports bra.
there is room for every
crazy thing that i can imagine.
the I has forgotten,

but now i remember

the very next person/animal/plant/or insect that i cross
has chosen to cross my path for a holy encounter.
There is only now to

pray as i enter the post office –
talk to my sliver of chocolate –
and study the morse code of the dishwashers whirring
moving my hips to the swoosh:
no need to escape to the cave
any more.
The cave moves within me
as dark and silent
as can be –
a black hole
in motion –
time behind her curving path.


12 Jun


Did I draw this darkness to me?  Maybe.

Could have been that challenging student,

the complaints of my child,

the traffic, the heat –

but quick as a blink, I’ve

exchanged rose lenses

for cataracts.

No food, no phone call, no errand

will allow me escape when

the old hag is sitting on my chest.

With not enough air to even cry out –

I overcome panic and

let the message

sink in –

sink down –

drown me.

100,000 feet within me there is more

than I can understand,

cold, damp,

pregnant with a mystery –

what will be born?

I’ve been escaping into lists

penned with surface – purpose fantasies,

instead of sinking to the bottom.

I’ve made the darkness grow and

now, here it is:

a dusty brick weighting my heart.

Awful, this feeling.

But isn’t that just it – why I avoid looking here?

The aching seabed calls to me –

this bruise is my alarm.

How many lives will I run away?

How many times have I gotten busy,

engaging anyone who would have me,

to escape the soul reason I came for?

Though I shiver from a chill at 95 degrees,

every cell cuddles

and chooses to remain

with me.

I quit my face;  I silence my ringer;

I’m marrying my shadow

in a dark wedding.

I make no promises,

about the reception

on the other side,

but if I had to give odds,

I think it is already lifting and

I’d stick around for the lemon cookies –

If I were you,

which I am;

they are worth the wait.



lemon balls


silence of stone

31 Jan

stony silence“You have traveled too fast over false ground;
Now your soul has come to take you back.

Take refuge in your senses, open up
To all the small miracles you rushed through.

Become inclined to watch the way of rain
When it falls slow and free.

Imitate the habit of twilight,
Taking time to open the well of color
That fostered the brightness of day.

Draw alongside the silence of stone
Until its calmness can claim you.”
― John O’Donohue

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.


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! 

going it alone (with others)

26 Aug

budapest metro


Without enough alone,

my tongue forms senseless words,

my body moves without purpose.

Going deep is a solitary thing.

Aloneness is  guarded at my gate –

Hours of no thing

I sew into my pocket by hand.

I would gulp you silence in a chalice –

I would lick you from the floor.

Beyond the richter swings of my own voice

I know how to read an empty chart.


i bless this semester’s eyeballs that window soul to me

I smile at elbows that protract upon desks –

propping up sleepy heads.

This is my promise to myself and you – I

sit alone so that we can gather

and do the work

and the work beneath the work.

I will still so I can move

I will quiet so I can make noise.

I will open my eyes so I can listen –

and in between our meetings

I will drink my fill of emptiness

so I can be full for you.



“Until you learn to inhabit your aloneness, the lonely distraction and noise of society will seduce you into false belonging, with which you will only become empty and weary. When you face your aloneness, something begins to happen. Gradually, the sense of bleakness changes into a sense of true belonging. This is a slow and open-ended transition but it is utterly vital in order to come into rhythm with your own individuality. In a sense this is the endless task of finding your true home within your life. It is not narcissistic, for as soon as you rest in the house of your own heart, doors and windows begin to open outwards to the world. No longer on the run from your aloneness, your connections with others become real and creative. You no longer need to covertly scrape affirmation from others or from projects outside yourself. This is slow work; it takes years to bring your mind home.”
~ John O’Donohue


viscosity of words

16 Aug


It seems there is

a precious balance

to pouring motor oil

without a funnel.


and the pour swings out

in thick liquid swills –

missing the hole and

running down

the outside of the engine.

Go slow,

and you find

the same spilling sway;

the error to either side burns off in engine heat.

There is a balance in the middle.

It takes

my entire coordination

to adjust the tilt and

speed of the pour.

I –

a sommelier

for my car’s engine-

bent from the waist –

all points of my attention focused on the

delivery of the divine liquid

in the morning light

just to get to work

as a longhaired neighbor cat –

whom I call Esè –

gives full attention to

my movement.

He knows the delicate dance I learn, here in the pour.

This operation is silent

and serious,

and in this frame of mind,

I start to think that words are viscous

like this oil,

a delicate pour out of my mouth —

When I go too fast or too slow

they don’t land

and instead spill and burn off of you

in the heat of motion.

Let me

quiet – and

hear truth

beyond fast or slow,

beyond awkward hurry and

slow deliberation.


hush and

yaddah yaddah

lies a language we’ve forgotten.

At the edge of our senses –

in peripheral shadow

floats a liquid language so free of weight it is

riding the breeze –

free from the illusion of a me


silent days

31 Jul


i was alone in my house for the 4th night in a row, last night

i  won’t go into detail about how this came to be; that this is so rare and unexpected is enough to say.

for 20 years i was a wife and mom in a chaotic situation, in which i was left with only one seeming way to truth – I had to find the still point in the activity.

now out of the blue I have a glimpse of wider plains of space and silence.

I can see the mind – not understanding – sets about the task to fill up any gap.

it took a while for the reverberating sounds in my head to die down.

but man oh man when they did – i realized i was floating in a watery world of silence

that so gently took my form within it.

even as more activity is creeping back in,  I’ve been carrying my own pool with me, in the car, to a meeting with a student,  sitting in the bookstore waiting for eden; m in a movable tank.  I may be leaving puddles of this delicious substance in my wake, ya think?

This silence is So far beyond the short visits to the cushion –

i’ve been stealing bits and moments of it for years, dreaming of a silent retreat one day

and though this is no vipassana 10 day-er – I’ll take this dive into the clear water of days as a start.

in watery silence, I have the luxury to be –

and in this silent being i float.

sliding parentheses

19 May



(;lsdnfaoifvknz;ohfeaofmlveofg;nwoeifj(     )al;skfnasldknvoaienwlkvz;seijfwnfv’;)


(aksjdnf;OnaIAe(                                                                                        );lasndvoankmc;’)


((                                                                                                                                                      ))



May we all feel the ease of  the spaciousness within.


words out of my mouth

29 Mar

“Speak only if it improves upon the silence.” – Mahatma Gandhi

I cannot improve the silence, Gandhi.

I have spent some time silent.  I have spent time speaking.  I have spoken long spells as a fool.

Dare I contradict the man, Gandhi?  When I read his words, I feel humbled and silent.  That is good.

But I also know that silence sometimes is haughty – safe – stagnant.

Sometimes silence is like holding toxins in the body.   Sometimes words are the messengers of incorrect thoughts showing up like pimples needing to come to the surface to be seen, expunged, healed.

I  hear the narrator from “The Love-Song of J. Alfred Prufrock”  (by T.S. Eliot)  in my head:

That is not what I meant at all. 
  That is not it, at all…”  

When I brag like a peacock.  When I make a joke that hurts someone.  When I start expounding about something I know nothing about as if I know.  When I take over and cut others out.

proud peacock

“Do I dare 
Disturb the universe? 
In a minute there is time 
For decisions and revisions which a minute will reverse.”

I do disturb the universe because this is part of the path I’ve chosen – To use my life, words, mistakes as a mirror.  I love the peacock in his display; it is beautiful and daring.

It is easy to hate the pimple, turn away from the ugly but my weakness is loved; it is okay to say the wrong thing.

And by allowing myself to participate in this life, I learn.

And more and more words  become less like pimples and more like flowers from some magical garden of the ineffable.  I become a clearer vessel for the words that are not my own.  The flowers that appear from words can only blossom because I dared to allow myself space and love to reveal the words that needed to be released.

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