I am so grateful.
I went climbing today!
It was a beautiful summer day,
nice and cool at the crags,
shaded by beautiful trees
splendidly clothed in their
finest green garments.
I swung in my hammock with a new friend.
I am excited for possibility,
Yeah…I needed that!
This feeling keeps happening,
and so I’ll just keep on asking,
When will I go through an entire day
and feel like I am enough, really enough?
I know that I am the heroine of my own story,
and it is my choice—I can write a really good one,
but when will my mind be free of the stories of others?
I want to stop hearing the voices of any souls
who were operating under the mistaken assumption
that I am broken and need fixing.
Why are their voices the loudest?
Great Spirit of Love and Life and Beauty,
Let me hear Your voice, only Your Voice.
I hope you’re faring well
now that we have slowed down a little
and allowed you a chance to recoup your strength a bit.
It must be hard with so many of us human children running
all over you pretty constantly
with no thought to how your plant children
and animal children and mineral children
are affected by us screaming human toddlers over here.
I’m going to bet this is your favorite Name day in years,
now that the dolphins have returned
and the turtles have returned
and the air is cleaner
and countless other places on your beautiful body
have had a chance to rest and heal.
Mother, thank you.
Thank you for your support all these years.
Thank you for this life, this breath,
all of these opportunities to move and be and express
the fullness of who we are.
Mother, I pray that when this strange time
your human children are going through right now is over,
we’ll remember what really matters,
and take you into account when we make our decisions.
But I know that you love us no matter what,
and you’ll do what you have to do
to teach us what we need to learn,
as all good mothers do.
Just One of Your Many Human Children
PS You’re so beautiful and I love you!
Today’s prompt over at NaPoWriMo invites us to write a poem about life’s simple pleasures. There are many. How could I choose just one? Or even a hundred? It’s almost midnight so I’ll contain myself and mention a few of my simple pleasures.
The sound of bubbles colliding with the sides of my glass
as I sip my sparkling water
Stepping outside and feeling fresh, cool wind on my face
The sun piercing through the clouds after days of rain
The scent of a fresh pot of green tea
Feeling my fingertips growing calloused from playing guitar
The sound of my children’s laughter
The taste of a really crisp apple
Sitting on my cushion in the morning and looking inwards
Watching blossoms fluttering from the trees like snowflakes
Lying down to sleep after an exhausting day
Taking a nap in the middle of the day
Watching ink spill out of my pen and onto the page
The feel of yarn slipping through my fingers
as I knit another row
The sound of my sewing machine.
The smell of steam rising off fabric while I’m ironing
Hitting several green lights in a row
Stepping into the hot shower when I feel cold
Love welling up as I tuck my kids in at night.
Just. Being. Alive.
Today’s prompt over at NaPoWriMo talked about the language of flowers and linked to a Victorian flower meaning archive. Although it was interesting finding out the meaning that the Victorians ascribed to flowers, I feel more moved to write a poem about what flowers mean to me…
Flowers. I have always loved them,
since before I knew what love was.
I just knew they were beautiful, delightful,
alluring, magical, mysterious,
silent jewels receiving the life
they had opened into.
As a child I spent my days outside
and one of my clearest memories
is of a carpet of clover blossoms
and dandelions in my parents’ yard,
glimmering in the bright sun.
I remember picking wildflowers in college
as I hiked the Appalachian trail
and drying them to decorate my dorm room.
I remember buying myself a gorgeous,
lush, big, bright bouquet of roses, lilies
and other cheerful beauties
the first Valentine’s Day after my children’s father
decided his heart was elsewhere.
And just this week my children collected
many spring blossoms to decorate the house;
we had tiny vases and bigger ones
of wildflowers, maple blossoms, flowering cherry,
and maybe a couple of blooms from the neighbors’ yards.
Today I’m on edge because my kids are arguing.
I’d like to become like a flower—
Still, silent, letting the light open me
to my fullest expression of beauty,
my only purpose in life…
This evening at dusk
I hiked down to the reservoir,
admired the beauty of the water,
the sky, the play of light on everything,
the way the breeze was ruffling my hair…
I put in my ear buds,
played a medicine song* on my phone
and sang along.
I stepped barefoot onto some rock slabs
that sloped into the water,
stretched my arms to the sky.
Then I began to dance.
I felt so wonderful and free.
Then I noticed across the way,
on the other side of the water,
maybe fifty yards away
someone was sitting there
on an outcropping of rock with a dog,
A young man, he was too far away
for me to tell how old…maybe a teenager?
And guess what?
I KEPT DANCING.
I thought to myself,
Well, he gets to be entertained, then.
And I kept dancing, and doing yoga,
because it felt good.
I just kept singing and dancing,
and he just kept watching me
from across the water, with his dog.
I danced unselfconsciously.
I danced for the wind and the water
and for my heart that was yearning open
in the setting sun.
I danced for the woman who grieved for two years
the loss of her husband’s love
and who is now free to love herself
better than any man ever has.
Then the breeze picked up
as twilight descended.
I collected my things, slipped my shoes back on,
ready to hike back up to my car.
I turned around to see the young man across the water
beginning his climb up the rocks with his dog.
I put my hands together at my heart and bowed to him.
I silently wished that he would find his heart’s true joy.
I’ll never know who my audience of one was…
I’m just glad that I kept dancing.
*I listened to “Healing Angels,” “Amataye,” and “Ayahuasca Takimuki” from the Sacred Valley Tribe collection of medicine songs.
A nightmare woke me up at 4:30am;
even with the light on I didn’t feel safe.
As sleep was out of the question at that point
I began to read and lost myself in bits about
blue-zone cultures and longevity.
And then breakfast and meditation
and yoga classes 1-2-3,
finishing at 12:30
talking on the drive home
with a dear friend in Colorado
going through some stuff of her own…
and reordering business cards
and thinking about writing an
“about me” for my website
which has lain dormant for two years,
and a shower, ahh…hot, beautiful water…
and then it struck me.
My daily life used to feel like a nightmare.
I would pray to god to give me beautiful dreams
so that I could find solace at night when I slept.
Now, between working as much as I can teaching yoga
and taking care of my two beautiful children,
my life has become more fluid and easy
and I feel more empowered.
This was the dream I was looking for
at this time last year.
and now it’s real.
Without knowing when it would happen or how,
I’ve lived into a more powerful version of myself.
Today I feel strong, healthy and happy.
In comparison to the nightmare it once was,
today my life feels beautiful and light.
And I am so grateful.
I wake up
and something’s different.
I see the sun.
I’m glad to be awake.
I have energy.
I’m excited to start the day.
I make berry salad
for our breakfast;
the kids and I enjoy
these colorful jewels
the earth grew
for our nourishment.
I feel so much love
my heart might burst.
My home is peaceful.
After the kids get on the bus
I come back home.
What is this feeling?
What is different?
And then I realize
I know what this is:
I feel better.
Back from a healing ceremony
where many tears were shed
and songs were sung
and layers upon layers
of old outworn behaviors
and patterns of thinking
were peeled up and released.
I pray that I can stay clear and open.
I recognized in the middle of ceremony
that there is nothing to escape from…
that this desire to get away
is an old survival mechanism
that no longer helps me.
I sat up tall and still
in the middle of extreme discomfort
And I heard Spirit whispering to me
Stop fighting. Just surrender.
Let grace move through you.
Let go. Release. Trust.
It was a long night.
Neural circuitry was being rewired.
Birth can be so painful.
I just wanted to be free
from the grip of my fear
and the stranglehold of my past.
I kept breathing throught this desire for freedom,
kept breathing through my fear,
my doubt, my judgment.
I came to see that no matter what arises
in my experience
it is always here to serve my awakening.
If I can just remember that one thing,
I could maybe, just maybe,
learn to trust in this moment.
The earth waking up all around me
The breeze stirring all the young leaves
and blossoms of every tree.
People cheerful and happy
No matter how faithfully
I may have been clinging
to old skeletons,
When spring comes
I’m given hope
that the willingness to die
really does mean
a beautiful rebirth,
I let go.