Wednesday, August 26, 2009

ReadWritePoem Prompt #89 - "Across The Water From Crowds"

I hadn't looked all week at this week's prompt from ReadWritePoem, so I took a peek tonight. The suggestion was to be inspired by a newspaper headline. So, I figured I'd give it a try. I quickly went to and wrote down the very first headline I saw: Crowds at Crosswater (you can read the real article topic here)

I used my POET'S License and reworked the title a bit and, still inspired by my last post and loving some of the bits I wrote there) I wrote this tonight:

Across the Water from Crowds

Lay me down among the dry and the rattling and the long and the lank

With spiders spinning me in grasses, holding me quietly together

I'm tired today of tuesdays only and thursdays at 11 and shoulda used a pencil

(the blunt point is driving me mad)

Lay me down under the trickle and the cool and the quiet and the burble

With reedy fences pulling me softly, beneath and silent

I'm tired today of crowds and clothes and buy one get one

(what I need isn't on sale)

Lay me down lip-deep in sun-hot lake beds with the musk and the crunch and the buzzing

So snake-laid trails can hide me on hands and knees, eyes soft shut

(away from tiresome columns and checks and lists)

on a sleepy sit-down with bluegrass and worms and finer things like


Tuesday, August 25, 2009

The Storm Before the Calm

This is my time of year. I LOVE the cooler nights and the cooler mornings. I love a sweater with my coffee on the porch. I love the crispness I've been getting hints of in the early hours.
Maybe it has to do with being a Virgo...but I am definitely an AUTUMN person.
Schedule-filling and job-securing have been on my horizon the past few weeks, and it does take me away from this blog, which is my most favorite hobby lately...I love to take photos and share them and my words with all of you.
I have been juggling dance class schedules with preschool schedules and cross-checking with yoga class schedules and of course with Cub Scout schedules...
but what I really want is to lie among these tall green grasses and let the spiders spin me in.

I want to perch on ancient basalt flows and stare out at the endless green ripples that I find here.
This is called "Fish Lake", and truly it is a lake for part of the year. It just happens to also dry up and drain out for the summer and then the sodden earth cracks with dryness in places and shares with the earth in the greenest grasses carpeting the former lake bottom. Heady wild mint pops up along its perimeter (of which I picked and rubbed up and down my arms and stuffed in my pocket so that I smelled like mint all day) and little purple asters (of which my daughter picked and I told her please not to, though I put it behind my ear anyway) have their day in the sandier portions.
Rather than driving to all of our appointments and school-shopping trips, I'd like to be back here watching the kids walk hand-in-hand along this path, worn smooth by all the summer hikers.

I'd rather be lying here listening to the wind rattle the grasses; that's the call-to-worship at my church. I'd rather be forehead down in the warm dirt right in this spot with the sun on my back; that's the Sacrament of Quiet Feeling at my church.

I'd rather be welcomed by this circle-window overlooking the lake/meadow,
than to be figuring out where the bottled glue is in a very busy, elbow-rich store aisle.
But I guess this is the STORM BEFORE THE CALM...
Peace be on all of you in your back-to-school madness!

Thursday, August 20, 2009

ReadWrite Poem - Prompt #88

Woohoo...another of these WORDLE prompts that I love so much. I have to say that "8-track" and "diode" really stuck in my craw. I kept coming up with these beautiful little ideas like "the bustle of bees" and "linen-coarse" and things like I normally do, until I realized that this word group had already made a story and they were just sitting there waiting for me to see it. It wasn't something I normally think about or imagine or feel inspired by...but this little snapshot brought to mind a 70's cop sitting in his 70's car (trashed as all get-out) on some kind of really lame stake-out that made him feel just a little pathetic, and leaving it was like washing off the dust of a lonesome road.


8-track elocution slunking past dusty diodes
grapefruit-spooned Rafferty lyrics
garbled on wide black tape
big and coarse as tuna on rye

pull it out blow it off slam it back in

track 3 sings You Know That I'll Never Leave
salacious Camels, lank-legged, froth and roil
coagulating around 10 and 2
rancid bustles of oily paper shift impatiently
first gear fling-wings homeward
hitch-stepping into place, fitting snug
to rough-rant up the copse

toward frickin' finer things

Tuesday, August 18, 2009


About a half an hour from our home is this lake...appropriately called Clear Lake
The colors in the water were an amazing patchwork of bright algae greens, deep browns, slashes of black, powdery whites, rich sparkling golds and brilliant mediterranean blues.
The air was hot and dry and made sweat trickle down our backs...
the crystal clear water was cold as ice as we wetted our fingers
and rubbed the backs of our necks with it.
Sweetly quacking lady-ducks followed us wherever we a kind of lacy train of downy brown fluff.
Our canoe shadow followed us in a kind of sparkling halo.
Reedy-green fences glittered with sunshine surrounded us,
while our curiosity brought us face-to-face with duck trails and bowered inlets.
My own sweet (talented!) husband made this cedar-strip canoe that carried us like a cloud over the shimmering top of the lake.
We sat on the dock while the kids ate giant icy pops and we were visited one last time by this little girl...she wasn't interested in icy pops, but we were interested in her, so she stayed a bit.
A day to clear out the cobwebs...what a breath of fresh air!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Inspire Me Mondays - Namaste in Mud

NAMASTE is a word from Sanskrit that literally means
Namas - to bow or give reverential salutation to, and
Te - to you
so essentially "to bow to you"
In short it is like saying, "That which is of the Divine in me greets that which is of the Divine in you" - it acknowledges that God resides in everyone's heart.
In length it means this:
"I honor the place in you in which the entire universe dwells.
I honor the place in you which is of love, of truth,
of light and of peace.
When you are in that place in you,
and I am in that place in me,
Watching my kids playing in the mud, I kept thinking that their constant hands clapping together full of mud, and their bowing from the waist to fill up their dump trucks was resounding with
to each other
to the earth
to their playthings
and when I sat next to them taking their pictures from this angle and that angle and they looked over at felt like we said it to each other.
How important the whole concept is...Honoring the divine in each other...absolutely beautiful.

Friday, August 14, 2009

A Heart that Holds

I was born with the power to guide. I am a teacher in the depths of my heart. I never was the kind of teacher with her desk straight up front to lord-it-over. I never was the teacher who took the train of children to the library or to the park by walking dominantly in front of them down the sidewalk. Nope. I'm the desk at the back, so I can quietly watch them all when they don't know I'm looking; a soft hand on the back to remind them to keep their eyes on their own paper. I'm a crouch-down-to-their-level kind of teacher. I'm the one who walks in the back after setting a responsible child to lead us down to the library, so I can keep an eye on every single one of them. They are entrusted to me; I must watch over them.

This follows me...this gift of holding and watching. I am constantly given more than I think I can handle and then it seems there are whispers of, "Let's see what she will do." I am in the midst of it all as I write...most of it isn't pleasant, and too often it is about fighting for life, but sometimes my hands are simply full of my family: my little kids in my arms, letting me kiss them a hundred times on the eyes, the ears, the neck, the armpit until they can't giggle anymore.

I suppose that people like me who are constantly given more than they can handle, are also given soft things to hold onto, to make the ride less bumpy. Every single day is a conscious effort to "see the silver lining" and to hold onto Faith. and so I share these words from My old buddy Bob (that'd be Robert Frost to those of you unfamiliar with my familiar ways), who MUST have been a "Heart-That-Holds" just like me:

The Armful

For every parcel I stoop down to seize

I lose some other off my arms and knees,

And the whole pile is slipping, bottles, buns--

Extremes too hard to comprehend at once,

Yet nothing I should care to leave behind.

With all I have to hold with, hand and mind

And heart, if need be, I will do my best

To keep their building balanced at my breast.

I crouch down to prevent them as they fall;

Then sit down in the middle of them all.

I had to drop the armful in the road

And try to stack them in a better load.

Yesterday I needed ritual.

I made this sweet little altar near my desk, with all the Chakra's represented.

A little angel hugging a fuzzy kitty (that's just perfect)

and this tiny teensy little cauldron that I use to burn homemade incense in.

This time I wrote down words that frighten me that I am called to "hold"

and I burned them up; I burned them to ashes and then I put some loose incense called "Sanctuary" on the whole thing and burned it again.

I let the cauldron hold the scary things...

so that I might ONLY have to hold my children.

Monday, August 10, 2009

Inspire Me Monday - Being the Change

I'm inspired by the wisdom of this teabag fortune.
I can't help but feel it is exactly the message
I keep getting:
Every choice I make will change the world.
Do I choose to change it for the worse or
do I choose to change it for the better?
I have that power at every single moment.
You have that power at every single moment.
It reminds me to think kinder thoughts, have nobler actions,
forgive more quickly,
see the ultimate good in all situations and in all people,
consider my motivations,
be willing to be wrong,
keep my toilets clean...
what difference will it make?
I just have faith that it DOES make a difference for the better.
I only have faith.
hey, the teabag said so.

Friday, August 07, 2009

Seven Pounds

If you repay me not on such a day,
In such a place, such sum or sums as are
Express'd in the condition, let the forfeit
Be nominated for an equal pound
Of your fair flesh, to be cut off and taken
In what part of your body pleaseth me.
~from Act 1 Scene 3 of The Merchant of Venice by W. Shakespeare~
I watch a lot of movies. When I say a lot of movies, I mean I am a movie HOUND; there are an average of 4 movies a week that go across my screen. Most of them I could leave, and many of them I use as background noise as I work.
Once in a great great while, like maaaybe once every two years, there is a movie that absolutely plucks me to my core and leaves me thinking about it for days on end.
I remember watching "City of Angels" and feeling that way....I thought "Why?" and "Wherefore?" and "Inasmuchaswhich?" for days and days afterwards.
When I watched the movie "Dead Poet's Society" I was in a funk for two days thinking about it.
After watching "The Others" I was terrified that I would find out that I was an "other".
I honestly prefer a movie that moves me in some way...horrifies me, saddens me, makes me laugh until I pee my pants, gives me shivers, sends me out of me seat 3 inches,
or makes me examine my life.
Will Smith is a genius actor and, right after Tom Hanks, he is my FAVORITE movie actor of alllll time. He has the acting ability to horrify me, sadden me, make me laugh until I pee my pants, give me the shivers, send me out of my seat 3 inches, and in recent movies...
makes me examine my life.
I just got done watching "Seven Pounds" and I just can't sleep thinking about it.
In every single way, I HEARD what the movie makers were trying to say.
#1: don't frickin' play with your blackberry when you are suppose to be driving
#2: be a part of the cure - all sorts of cures
#3: real love means action - "Don't be weak."
#4: the most terrible debts to pay are those we think we owe
I can't help but think about a has dealt her a terrible blow, and when I think of her all the philosophies I have about life just could all be thrown out the window.
I believe down in the bottom of my heart in multiple lives, and I also believe in Karma, and I also believe that in each life we continue on our journey toward understanding. But I also believe that life is this great wonderful mystery, so that means that everything I think could totally blow out the window when the time comes for me to see it like it is.
Today, I also realize that it doesn't really matter what philosophies we have, or beliefs we cling to. If they don't serve you right now, forget about them. It doesn't matter whether I believe that I might have actually chosen this life to live to continue on my journey in life and the lessons I need to doesn't serve me at all.
The only thing that serves me is to LIVE LIFE.
Simply LIVE LIFE...
There is no use in exacting a pound of flesh for every debt I think I might owe...
how tragic.
HOWEVER, that movie reminds me, helps to solidify, smooths off the rough edges of a belief I've always held: out of the ashes, beauty can rise.
I know it seems so "cheerful" and "naive", but I've never seen an instance when it wasn't so...yet.
Though Will's character felt he had to fix the wrongs he felt he'd done,
and he did SO MUCH GOOD it is crazy, and he should be Sainted,
it was absolutely tragic...just tragic...
I don't understand mind can't wrap around it...and I am ashamed to even mention it...
and I so I say this in a whisper...
sometimes the most beautiful things can arise out of sheer tragedy.
Why is this?
I don't know why.
Though, my friend has been dealt such a raw deal in life, from day one...I think to myself, "Where is the bright spot?" "Where is the beauty?"
I think it isn't always our business to know what may come of our lives for those we touch.
I think that our lives are part of this wonderful mystery in which we are all so connected, that we don't always see the reasons or the outcomes. There is something in there about how Faith is created and sustained. If we didn't believe that life had anything to hold for us, we'd all just lie down like a sheep in the rain who is lost, and just die from sheer lack of will.
Faith that at any given moment, no matter how tiny, we are changing the course of life for the better. By a quick smile, or an honest compliment, or by having the patience to stay behind the slow truck in a snow storm, or by simply keeping our eyes on the road when we have our families in the car with us.
Life, in all its sickness and scariness and diseases and near-deaths, really is a great and wonderful thing, and I have nothing to offer you by way of proof except that you open your eyes and have FAITH that it just is.
Here's to good movies, and even better movie makers that actually have something to SAY, and to actors that convey it, with all of the honesty and emotion it deserves.

Thursday, August 06, 2009

August Moon

Last night, unveiled
rounded and gleaming
forever becoming with shining feet dancing from the last
with silver grace
standing before her in sharp relief
saw-edged obsidian trees
illuminating and softening
forever wise to who is watching
still pouring forth the light of Who She Is
dancing through each age
proud and serene
and generous

Tuesday, August 04, 2009

August Skies in Central Oregon

Forget not that the earth delights to feel your bare feet
and the winds long to play with your hair.
~Kahlil Gibran~
The sun is the epitome of benevolence -
it is lifegiving and warmthgiving and happinessgiving, and to it we owe our thanksgiving.
~Jessi Lane Adams~

Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you,
and the storms their energy, while cares will drop off like autumn leaves.
~John Muir~

Sunday, August 02, 2009

ReadWritePoem Prompt #86

WOOOHOOO! This was the most fun poem to write! The prompt was totally succinct and completely doable - with lots of good challenge. I just am addicted to making my own hyphenated adjectives...I feel like a Word Goddess when I create my own that be a "Word Goddess"? Here is the prompt:

Here is my poem:

tiny tangled legs wrapped in timothy grass
pink palms flat, in a bird-hunter's blind.
a sudden chumble-chooking of meadowlarks
makes me sit up so sunrays bounce-refract from golden braids
tied with red yarn, fat as readied caterpillars. Grandma says,
"That's my favorite bird," and I agree.
In the u-pick, strawberry rows succumb to Roman-esque ways
sickening Bubba like little birdies weighty with seeded pulp.
Freezer jam is put up to remind us of engorged bellies and vertical stains on new white shirts,
but now lips, waxy-red as berry juice, are coated with the exhaust
of my raspberry car dusting itself away toward late-night pizzas
but chewing on the tar-bubbled smog-heated air and red wax lips that taste remotely of rolaids.
I collage and journal about dead-beat dads,
then I make art from lemons, instead of sugar-sweetened lemonade
with ice-cubes calmly clinking on cold-beaded glasses.
These feathered wings have beat the skin of a full-breasted moon, and Grandma says
"That's my favorite bird," and I am missing her.
Bubba has his own baby now and
the strawberries are in the sunsets that soften the broken crags.
These healing flames are like hands praying, clasped around the rake
as I make my own timothy grass come spiraling back around my legs.
I wash the red off my lips and finally see my own blood
as an autopsy of sunshine, lemons and feathers.

Saturday, August 01, 2009

The Mushrooms of Inspiration

Happy Lughnasadh (or Lammas) to those of you who celebrate it :)
You can read about it here and here.
Today is we say...auspicious. Not only is is Lughnasadh, but it is Day 17 of the 19 Candles for Brighid, and my day to hold the Candle of St. Brighid
(as you can read about here), and those days are always full of inspiration, inner-desires coming to the surface, and a kind of "full-moon" quality for me.
Inspiration, which is said to come as a fire from deep within, has seemed to come to me more like this little mushroom...something coming out of nothing, needing loads of water and a certain amount of shade to pop up. Mushrooms are linked to the Full-Moon for me...could be the shape of the cap, and the color, or the fact that they come out of cool, shady spots...
I'm not sure if I can explain the connection, as it comes straight from my GREEN HEART.
But, today has been the day of all sorts of inspiring thoughts coming to the surface...I've wanted to make these necklaces, and crochet, and have been planning the colors to paint my kids' rooms, and thinking about creative scheduling and planning for the year,
playing in my garden and talking to my tomatoes (which have made one tiny green bubble - joy!!!)
I'd love to offer you these Bits of Inspiration
before I put them on my Etsy store:

"Drawing Down the Moon"
Blue glass beads and silver-tone wire wraps
a little silver-tone moon charm
silver chain with a toggle closure
hangs 14"
"Mother Midnight"
Black and green-shiny glass beads and silver-tone wire wraps
a little pewter-tone spiral goddess charm
silver chain with a toggle closure
hangs 12"
Click here to inquire on purchasing
"Cold Springs"
Turquoise, milky white and light-blue glass beads
with silver-tone wire wraps
silver chain with a toggle closure
hangs 12"
Click here to inquire on purchasing