Saturday, December 23, 2006
I feel like that has been my life the past year and a half...stuck in the storm and left in the foggy aftermath encased in ice. The depression was numbing; a feeling of being half alive and dream- like. Creating anything artistic was becoming impossible. Writing was a way to regurgitate toxins, but it didn't allow me to move or create. It was a little like being stuck in the maze in the movie remake of 13 Ghosts. There were nightmares being discovered, moving through it and then redicovered and the sheltered from it all to realize I had come to the center of the problem and so what now?
I purged my wardrobe, chest of drawers, desks, closets, book shelves and cupboards. The garden was next and then every box in the garage. Things were taken to thrift in truck loads weekly. If I hadn't used it I threw it out or donated it. My vast library of occult books that I had carried with me like icons for decades were destroyed. Some people say that books, being paper do not pick up negative or positive energies, but that isn't true. Everything is influenced in one way or another, because energy keeps everything on the planet together and is a part of every thing. Divorce, bad relationships, worry, anger by the truckload due to family bullshit and backlash, moving, vibes from years in Fresno and desperation to leave the negative vortex had built up into a soup of negativity. The past few years it didn't matter how mundane the topic was, I would start to read a few pages and feel zapped. Dulled.
The whole experience was leaving me emotionally crippled and I finally stopped feeling sorry for myself and decided to walk again.
It's not been easy, but it has been an eye opener.
I went out and listed with an employment agency to go back into the real work force. I landed what I didn't think I wanted, another Engineering firm gig. But this was different. Oddly, the people I have wound up working with are intelligent outside of the engineering realm, happy, joking, eclectic and not cardboard. They think outside of the box and I didn't expect that. I also didn't expect the variety of pagans and eclectically spiritual individuals there. Or maybe, just maybe it was me that had opened. I had found a home.
I began to create...knitting hats, ponchos, scarves. Stitches were changed, patterns altered. Shrines began again and I made one for Marie Laveau to send to my brother in New Orleans. The Yule decorations went up on Thanksgiving weekend and I felt the season creeping in slowly. I was melting.
My life was changing. Gut wrenching at times. The panic attacks had ceased...Thankfully. I turned to my husband again and found it comforting instead of demanding. I'd never shut him off, just wasn't sharing or feeling...like wrapping your arms around yourself in self-protection and hermiting. I needed to insulate. I needed to strip my wiring, but just didn't realize it.
Then there was the fiasco of my father-in-law and the death of his wife. What to do with Dad. Move him up here with us, move into a different place completely that wasn't my choice. Be someone else, be supportive to him and get smacked around emotionally and mentally for it by him. He was short, ignorant and plain rude to me no matter what I did. The idea of living with this man was not appetizing in any way, shape or form. I washed my hands of the entire situation three nights ago when I had found he wants to live in a condo in the downtown area and gamble all of his money away. He, of course, hasn't said he is going to throw it all on the ponies and roulette wheel, but he's made his intentions known by his actions.
On that final letting go, I found not only was I walking, I'd sprouted wings. I awoke at 1 am that night after sleeping 4 hours and thought of ways to make our house more or our own. I was looking at furniture design, sculpturing the walls, mosaics for the bathroom. I was looking a plaster, resins, stone and glass, envisioning an elvish home with a backyard forest retreat in the middle of the desert. Sleep was gone and my mind went childishly berserk.
The baseboards would be changed, stone on the floors throughout the house, stone on the walls inside in stacking fashion up the walls, glass mosaics of all sorts in the baths, carving, painting and woodburning of Celtic, Scandinavian and naturalistic designs on the baseboards, faux ceiling beams, above the arched entryways and on the hearth. I would paint a mural above the fireplace from the Lord of the Rings...or at least inspired by it and the Book of Kells. Latex mold work and wax casts for creating my own space. Finally, I was free to start living in this house...and started the projects by buying two bags of frosted and vitrioled glass pebbles in shades of medium to deep purples to clear. I will buy a bag everytime I go to the store and begin the project in my hall bathroom.
Reading? Yeah, I'm, reading again. Starting with books I have wanted to enjoy for a long time. I jealously guard my reading time. The Silmarillion and the Lost Tales, Vol. 1 are being read simultaneously. (Best way to read the Lost Tales or you will get lost.) Re-examination and baby steps back to faith, and all the things I don't know. Re-reading the details and not glossing over or skimming through anything.
It amazing how much stuff I really don't know.
Wow! I have no clue!
What a great feeling to be curious again about things I was taking for granted or felt stiffled by. I thought... was more than sure that I knew so much...or believed I did. Amazing how we trap ourselves with that. I wasn't even aware I had done it. I didn't know that I was stagnant intellectually or spiritually...well I take that back. Spiritually I was recognizing something for years, but it wasn't clear (nor was I motivated) and there was no idea on where to start to work on it.
So off I go to clean house, plot and, well do who knows what....delicious!
Tuesday, November 28, 2006
...or is it....
(dum dum dum.....)
the Holy Ghost?
Do you think I can get the Roman Catholic Church to sanction this as a vision? You know like the Virgin Mary in the tree trunk or the image of Jesus Christ on the tortilla?
photo copyright 2006. LAG All Rights Reserved
Wednesday, November 22, 2006
When I come back
will you be there to hold me?
just a moment to soothe
aching nerves and my tired soul...
Give the loving words
I long to hear
so dear to me now...as always
I have travelled so far
but the reason was not clear
I echoed out the cry
only to hear it
bouncing back lonliness
It was the only answer
Walk the corridors to my rooms
and fall in step...
with the castles of air
of then and now
Shadows come and go
touching me briefly
Too much (sorrow)
wells up and it
taints my dance
I light a candle for you
burning it bright in the window
light in our storms
light for your way
Pulling back from desperation
I walk the sea foam
gazing into the hems of the oceans' skirt
The decoration and finery of small shells
seaweed embroiders the story of us in her gown
The sea is lifting me
in the shallows
to lay me soft on your shores
silent at your feet
Gather me there, my Love
Away from the lights and stage door exits
lift me away to the fires and warm furs
where I can sleep in peace
perhaps a small time together
without dramas and wars
Claim me as your own and heal this weary soul.
copyright 1987 LAS. all rights reserved.
Saturday, November 18, 2006
A thorn sticks in my finger and it penetrates right into my brain. There are times when I am afraid of my thoughts...scared of what my mind will conjure up for it's own enjoyment or torture.
I have been writing since 5 this morning. Unable to sleep, the poems, no, the emotions ran over in my mind ceaselessly. If I purgue this, will it leave me alone? How many times do I have to purgue it? It drones on and on as a nun over her rosary.
change the channel
twilight zone and they are all the same show.
popcorn for breakfast with oatmeal and a dash of brown sugar with my tea. Okay, let's see where this leads me.
Where it leads you.
There is a dark side to me...glittering, knife-edged and very, very sharp. I am throwing it all up on paper, so to speak...the beautiful, bold, insecure and bizarre.
...the smell of snuffed out candles in the evening air and church confessions banging my head against the dark, on the wood confessional and the words of someone anonymous giving me meaningless absolution for sins I haven't even thought of committing.....wouldn't in a million years.
I count candles and rain drops, and tears that were shed over trivialities and nonesense whose intense meaning in my past look absurd in the now. I keep counting them. Collecting them as scattered beads on the ground, something precious to be put away until I have the patience to re-string them and turn them into something truly beautiful.
The night is young and the spirit is believing in the wax and lighted string and wisps of smoke tangled up in prayers so intimate and unspoken aloud . The silence within me echos up and the choir screams. The spirit boils.
Do you see it? Do you understand ?
So much I pick up and see. So much that goes unnoticed in everyday hurrying to work.
People pass by the building fascade and never stop and REALLY see it. They don't know about the beautiful tiles and the rococo. They don't see the gargoyal sitting placid and ready to spout water during the rainfall. The see the piece of yesterday's newspaper and dog crap by the doric column and have no idea there is a sky above. Eyes to the pavement. Attention to the bits of litter and trash.
I see it, too. I just have the nerve to raise my head. That makes me dangerous. That makes me know too much.
Laying down at Sutro gate is a cement lion. He waits and watches the decades roll by with the fog from the Pacific Ocean. He is covered in sun, covered in dew, cloaked in rain. His roar is frozen. He is wise and aware of everything that has passed before him in the stream of traffic and time that has flowed down the hill over looking the ruins of ghosts and laughter and dancing in the dark to the orchestra after oysters and champagne. Dancing on the floors of a building that you can't see above the ruins and the tunnel and the boom of the waves at high tide when the spirits run with your candle through the darkness and snuff it out on the rocks and water at the end of cave. Dancing with their ghost lights and dreaming of us as a fantasy in their mind.
Madness, you whisper.
Silent. So much is.
picture and poem copyrighted 2006. All rights reserved.
The stuff of records
realm of the Egyptian Thoth
It is the knowledge
of something missing
black solitude and shadows
...a held belief...
in high-gloss fronted cabinets
at their own reflection
love blessed (and forbidden)
The photos stare
and like the sphinx
in whipping fabrics
silks blowing in the wind
to the Black Rock Desert
The colours dazzle
against the dry, hot sand
rocking me out of my daydreaming
billowing into nights
until the wolf calls
and my throat swells
with the sound of stars
kissing the naked daybreak.
photo and poem copyrighted 2006. all rights reserved.
There is nothing to be done
Movement in careful measures
Dancing around the abyss
until my heart is raw
So close to the edge
is no longer a question
Grace has turned to shards of brittle glass
consumes the players
Driving us on
from the truth
as an ocean between.
Electric Fence and poem are both copyrighted 2006. All rights reserved.
I Remember (Just a Little)
Thursday, October 19, 2006
Yet the washed up treasure chest eludes me. I don’t even have a clue as to what would be inside, but it’s that nagging thing, like the need to write that keeps me pursuing. Pursuit, but of what or who? Myself?
There is an endless task…. I have a very good habit of dodging myself…looking for myself in the strangest places…running as hard as I can to reach me, "she" suddenly veers left or right or speeds up or stops and I pass right through me… pass by me and left with not so much as a shadow to hold...
And she laughs….
Friday, October 06, 2006
Wednesday, October 04, 2006
Excerpt from John Cowper Powys "Autobiography"
"We have to live a long time to know what are the important moments. We think, at the time, they are the days when we change continents, or hemispheres, or nationalities, or religions, or infatuations, but they do not as a rule turn out to be the great lumbering events. They turn out to be some little, tiny, infintesimal sensation...like Proust's "Madeline" dipped in camomile tea...that reveals to us the clue to our life"......."This tattered Euclid revealed to me that it is possible, even when the bulk of your days and the larger number of your hours are full of discomfort, to embrace a thousand essences of life. The limbs of the loveliest of women, the flanks of the nobelest of hills, the mosses upon the most marbly rocks, the clearest waterfalls, the freshest of ploughed-up fields, the blackest of rooks feeding in the furrows, the whitest dust rising up from the most ancient classic roads, the gleam of glittering sea-pebbles, the faint music of the dying away of the burdens of old ballads, the taste of newly baked bread, the feel of the mystery of things as you muse over your tea...to enjoy such presences and such essences of life and to do so in the scope of some negligible fragment of matter, this and nothing less is what I found I could compass under the spell of this little plum-coloured Euclid! Yes, I learnt from this moment in that littered lobby, smelling of acrid leather, sour sweat, and rotten apples, that our deepest pleasure strew behind them...even when at the time they are not consciously enjoyed...leaves of delight become enchanted with the passing of time, like petals gathered in an ancient pot pourri."......"And if they are always there in that storehouse, why cannot they be summoned up at will? And they can! Proust, with his impersonal Eternal Being, stops short at this point, leaving it all to the accidents of our way. But when I think now of that Euclid something comes back! Not in any thrilling rush does it comes. It comes quietly and prepense. But something does actually come from where that book lies in my mind."
Tuesday, October 03, 2006
It is clear and the skies are bright blue. The winter always turns the waters the most intense green-gray-blue. You think of gray as muting, but it isn’t. Not here. It adds a depth to the vibrancy…penetrating and vast. It collides in stark contrast to the tan-white sands and red rock. The outcroppings stick out of the landscape creating a strange alien-like world. Hidey-holes peek out for rats, rabbits, and coyotes from the ancient rock formations. The sage and goatheads grow up and around into brittle boney fingers. The cold air is sweet with the smell of last years brush and grasses.
Coming close to where the water is lapping the beach, I look for the high water mark from the last storm. This is where the debris is left. This is the best place to search for cast up treasures.
A pelican bone lies on the shore. It is half buried in sand and bleached white from last summers heat. The femur is long and smooth with small spikes at the joint. I am always amazed at how light they are. I have several at home on an altar in my workroom where this one is soon to be placed. Some are femurs, others are vertebrae, and pelvis. There are fish bones, small bones of mice and rabbits, and a few deer bones lying among the candles, rocks and beads. Each has found a place of reverence.
Why bones? It seems gruesome to some until I explain that I am awed by structure. We create within our bodies these complex structures. It reminds me of what we are underneath and the grander scheme of things. There is a beauty in bones an intimate puzzle. They are life and a symbol of death. We leave behind this bit of ourselves, although it is not who “we” were. They’ve been described as a structural temple for the spirit…supporting timber and joists…like an old cabin sitting abandoned in the fields.
The artist Georgia O’Keefe painted a lot of bones…skulls mainly. She found an intricate simplicity to them…a beauty that not many appreciate. Being in the desert, I have found that fascination. It is a sacred tribute of what went before. In different native lore, bones become a spiritual connecting point with a totem or hunted animal…a power source to be drawn upon.
Weaving beads about the top, I will add a pelican feather and place it on my altar as a reminder. Like that bird, my spirit is free and I can fly over the lake and find peace when I’m in need of it. I can dip down into the water and find sustenance in the cool depths and inspiration in the shimmer and dance of the fish. Warming myself on the shores of summer, I feel the wind in my hair as the bird rises up in flight, even though it’s winter. Even though it’s cold.
That is the freedom I find in the bones.
Monday, October 02, 2006
Lost things...lost people...moments and memories. It's strange how sometimes a piece of time that is so important in a special moment gets drowned in your mind and then resurfaces. A trigger point gets touched and suddenly you're transported thirty years back....
into a old brick colored Ford that is driving through a pine and aspen filled canyon in Utah at sunset. The Moody Blues "Knights in White Satin" is playing on the radio. It was the end of autumn. The seats were warm and soft. I was sitting next to this beautiful 18-year-old boy and wishing that this moment could last, though I knew that it wouldn't.
Driving back from California last night at twilight, I was again in a canyon, surrounded by pines and aspen...a passenger counting the white lines. It was raining heavily and the highway was a dark, oily snake in our headlights. My husband and I had stopped in Colfax and bought hot coffee at the Starbucks. The smell of the pines mixed with the coffee and the rain swept air became heavy, crisp, chilly and intoxicating.
For one brief moment the sun shone through the clouds just enough to light the sky to a deep, angry pink. A flash of the something raced in my mind...Terry, a song, and the canyon. So long ago, I thought. In a swallow of coffee, the sky had changed and the colors inside and outside of my head were gone.
The drive to and from California does this to me everytime. Maybe it is the forest or a combination of things, such as the rain or the smell of strong coffee on a cold night. Time passages.
The stretches of forest on Highway 88 (and 49, 120, 50 or 80) are beautiful and yet disturbing. Staring off into the thick woods, I wonder what lurks out there past the low hanging branches and the misty thickets. My mind stirs the witch's brew of images, words, and music, especially when I'm on the road. The whine of the tires on ashalpt, clicking past the fences and telephone poles all creates a music of it's own....he song comes on the radio. I relish the moments of now....."and I love you....yes, I love you...oh, how I love you."