Productivity as Diversion

Just to be is a blessing. RABBI ABRAHAM JOSHUA HESCHEL I have an hour to myself now. White wine, and blueberries. And noise-cancelling headphones, because the roofers are still laying the new shingles in neat and shiny rows. I am completely aware of the decadence on display in those sentences. And in the fact that…

Some Thoughts On Spaciousness

To protect what is wild is to protect what is gentle. Perhaps the wilderness we fear is the pause between our own heartbeats, the silent space that says we live only by grace. TERRY TEMPEST WILLIAMS I’ve been lying awake nights fearing that every phantom pain is another blood clot, and I’ve been trying to…

An Anatomy of Grief

I could begin with a broken fingernail. And sketch the lines towards my heart along the twisting bones and flesh grooved in fishbone patterns, like the mapping of tiny streams flowing towards a sea. Always flowing –along the knotty veins that rise above the surface, in vulnerable, bruised smudges of charcoal. The details are sharp,…

Cultivating My Mind

The tomatoes I replanted when they outgrew the greenhouse are now rotting greenly on the vine. I figure there is a metaphor there. The garden was never cultivated. I never cultivated the garden. The coriander sprouted – then flowered, and quickly went to seed. The beets were too crowded to thrive, and the sweet potatoes…

Before the Kiss

We have a responsibility to hold to the power of love that we know to be true, and to not allow the world around us to deaden that in ourselves. LUCAS JOHNSON So many thoughts this week. And so little time to write. It’s been a week of un-braiding the aspects of my life –…

Easing Mornings

The world is changed by your example, not your opinion. PAUL COEHLO With all the words of wisdom printed and spoken among us, it’s easy to forget that words are not wisdom – are not whole incantations. They are abstractions, shadows and lures. We stand on ceremony. Recipes must be followed: eye of newt obtained…

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….