A Limited Range of Motion

I’m still waiting for the results of the second MRI. The doctor says it can verify a slipped disk, or cancer. But if it’s stress-induced, well – I function too well to qualify for a counselling referral. Despite my previous diagnoses. We go through the side effects for the various pain killer options. I opt…

A Story Written in Water

I keep asking myself if I want to write a memoir. But isn’t that what I am continually doing? Besides. There’s no one to verify a word. The first time a boy wanted to kiss me I made him do it underwater. That’s when I knew I was amphibious. from “Red-eared Slider, X”. Powell, R.,…

Learning to Swim

I have been trying to remember the last time I went swimming. Last night I dreamt that I was teaching my youngest to swim. In my waking memories he is so small, so thin. He didn’t have enough body fat to make it a matter of learning to float first. In my dream a river…

An Anti-Climatic Sense of History

Dear D.L.D., Someone recently told me that what people don’t understand is that her generation is the future. I’ve been thinking about the concept of generations. The arbitrary grouping that attempts to “fix” time in snapshots. Being born in between generations, I can’t find myself in any of the pictures. My children, as well, fall…

The Shape of Impermanence

The year we moved into this huge house, I decided to take full advantage of the room we christened “the atelier”. I had every intention of picking up expressive practices that I’d abandoned over the years – for oh-so-many-reasons. But I stopped attending the local croquis group after only a few months. All of the…

The Emotion of Textures

I used to have a bag of clay in the corner of my atelier here at the house. Which didn’t make much sense since the room was set up for bookbinding. For a year maybe -as a form of meditation – I made tiny begging bowls that I would return to the bag of clay…

Name the Color of Rain

Today I learned that hummingbirds see more colors than we do. I don’t know why that fact keeps bobbing into my consciousness now. I find myself searching for a word to describe the emotion that I feel. Wistful? Attending to life is an act of love. – Katie Rubenstein I sit on a rock in…

Where Was I?

What you are, the world is. And without your transformation, there can be no transformation of the world. – J. KRISNAMURTI Dear DLD, Did you wake up some days and wonder when you walked away from yourself? It seems to happen to me over and over again. There is a problem with the metaphor when…

Work for Pleasure

(Day 2: a pilgrimage of the spirit) Auguste Rodin said: True artists are almost the only men who do their work for pleasure. My first thought was that this is because historically only men of a certain social standing could do their work for pleasure. The rest of us have had to earn a living….

Pilgrimage of the Spirit

Another pilgrimage from home – again, with the guide Amy Gigi AlexanderAnd again, with differing time zones and schedules among the group, I begin a day and a half late. But it seems appropriate this time. We were scheduled to set off from Canterbury to Rome with the turning of the sun – on the…

The Front Line

Last year I kept cutting off my co-teacher when he talked about the “Greeks”. I kept qualifying: free, land-owning men in Greece.
I am still learning about the necessary qualifying when it comes to the facts of my own country of origin: “…The Land of the Free, and the Home of the Brave.”
Today I hear this as the truth: The Free and The Brave are and have been two separate populations.
Ah, Democracy.

The Person We Have Never Been

When you can’t go far, you go deep. – BR. DAVID STEINDL-RAST Oh, Di, you wrote: “…you don’t presume to know me. A gift beyond rubies!” Isn’t that true? Writing today, when across the ocean from me there are events taking place that I don’t know how to think about – much less talk about….

Clearing the Way for Summer

A few days later someone got the idea that we all had to do it again so we could take a picture from space. I remember this because I wrote about it in a poem about 9/11. The aspect of the (meta-) performativity of our “Humanity”.

Without Filters

Finally having returned to morning practice, I’ve moved back into my body – with the nudging aches and unexpected pains. With the roundness and the wrinkles. I’m making the required effort of moving with ease now. I’ve settled into my fears and found them – tolerable. I mean: what’s the alternative? The world keeps turning,…

What We Do for a Living

I’m beginning to wonder if teaching isn’t really the oldest – and most indispensable – profession any way?  

Here is how you slip a stick into a termite hole, little one: you need protein.
This is how you fold a palm leaf to make a safe bed: sleep well.
Watch me dance, hear me sing. Let’s run: this feels good.

Tending New Growth

considering grace: a word that means so many things it’s more like an ambiance than a word. The mouth opens and closes like an embrace. There is a kind of taking in, in the pronunciation itself. Exhale. Receive – while you give. You can’t help it.

In Depth

When I began I had considered myself as being in a liminal state. But what I’ve come to realize is that there is no other state of being. There is no good reason to think of life as a series of stasis points with periods of growth – or with periods of decay – between them. 

Walking Away from It All

I’ve hiked for days once before. And I stopped caring whether my socks matched. I stopped looking at every hill as something to be gauged and conquered. I put one foot in front of the other and kept an eye out for grouse in heather. 

What we leave behind us after a long journey is one thing, what we take with us is also important.