Monday, December 31, 2007

transfer grace

The idea that we all hold grace is a beautiful one. The far more splendid notion is that we realize this and bring it to all of our interactions with one another.

The word grace derives from the Latin root 'gratia' meaning 'pleasing quality, good will, gratitude and effortless beauty.' Even with high ambitions, it is unrealistic to think that we can relate to others with these qualities all the time.

This is where transferring grace enters the picture. If we can bring kindness and gratitude to interactions, then we must be able to receive them as well. Therefore we can consider grace to be contagious. By giving and accepting grace through our connections with others, we do not have to carry the burden of constantly remembering to deliver goodness, nor do we have the right to blame others for their seeming lack of good will. We can have faith in the cycle of grace, both acknowledged and unseen.

As we embark on a new year, let us become more conscious of the grace that lies within us and welcome this cycle with openness and intention.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

just lovely

The word "lovely" has somehow snuggled in and found a cozy spot in my daily vocabulary. So often we want to recount experiences with bright descriptive language to create a vivid picture for another's imagination. In a very contented way, the word lovely has become a simple expression of a sense of sweetness, whether it is about a person, an encounter or a moment in time.

I went away with my mom and sister a couple of weekends ago. We had a lovely time. It was a weekend of laughter, relaxation and appreciation. I could paint pictures here of extraordinary dinners and delicious conversations. But what keeps coming to my mind, as the most memorable moments are those where we are just enjoying each other's company and taking in the fullness of life.

Right now in my life, "lovely" is perfect. "Lovely" is all I want. It is all I am expecting and hoping for. And in turn, what the world is thankfully giving me.

Monday, November 12, 2007


Another year has circled- my birthday is this week. A quote by Zora Neale Hurston keeps running through my mind, "There are years that ask questions and years that answer." This year was a year filled with questions- about life, faith, surrender, courage and meaning. And I have certainly done my best to do as Rainer Maria Rilke challenges: "Don’t search for the answers, which could not be given to you now, because you would not be able to live them. And the point is to live everything. Live the questions now."

For me, living the questions without searching for answers is about accepting what is and understanding that like everything, I am in process and the goal of that process is to continue the process. It seems ironic that we are endlessly in search of solid answers that can really only be found in the constant movement of it all. Change is everywhere and in everything- in nature, in our breath, in relationships and for that matter, in the answers as well.

Is your year one of searching or one more of a settled nature? What does living the questions mean to you? Do you know what your questions are? How does it feel to accept that you might not find the answers?

If you struggle with these questions and your own- I commend you. You are open and living and in process. Now, smile and enjoy the moment, this is it!

Monday, October 29, 2007

opening up

If we all said everything on our minds the world would be a pretty noisy place. Our thoughts are textured with emotions, judgments, beliefs and ideas. As social creatures we need to communicate with others. The questions is- which pieces do we choose to share and with whom?

Each day we encounter and speak with many different people. But our most intimate thoughts are saved for particular people- safe people. And even then, we still have to evaluate how our precious ideas and viewpoints will be heard, listened to and reflected upon. It can be difficult to open up to others and we all hold the fear of being hurt and rejected.

Do you have safe people to share with? If not, where can you find and nurture those relationships? What pieces of your self are you willing to open up about? What are the qualities you look for in a person with whom you are willing to share? Do you foster those traits within yourself?

As you ponder these questions, consider one more- is there someone I can share my answers with?

Sunday, October 14, 2007

too much time

As you may have noticed, I haven't blogged for some time- in my opinion, too much time. There have been a lot of changes and new things in my life and somehow I continue to convince myself that I am too busy to blog. When I have sat down to write, my good intentions have gotten swayed by daily distractions and to do lists.

It's funny that I've entitled this blog entry 'too much time,' when for the most part, I've felt like there just isn't enough of it. Where does it go? The days are good. But they still seem to go by and the filled pages of my calendar get flipped as if they were pages in a book instead of moments I've lived. I wonder about these pages, these words. Do I fill my life with too many appointments, obligations or even time with people I love? Lately, I have even been scheduling time to relax- what a bizarre concept!

Last weekend I went walking among the redwoods in Muir Woods. I saw a Blue Heron in the creek. He moved with grace and majesty. As he lifted each leg and placed it in the water, he created space and silence. This beautiful creature, in his very existence, has an understanding of time that we strive for through things like meditation and taking time to breathe.

Seeing the Blue Heron reminded me that there is a balance to be found between too much and too little time. No matter how busy our lives get, there is always room for stillness and rest. And now, I bid you to go find some and I will too.

Saturday, August 04, 2007

lost and found

During the past few weeks there has been a lot of loss and anniversary of loss in my life. Thinking about these losses has triggered thoughts about what might be found. When we lose a loved one, do we only find sadness, pain or a deep unexplainable space? Is it possible that we can search beyond this space to a new place of found things?

One thing we may find is a memory bank which we can visit. With people who are alive, we call up memories every once in a while, but not usually with any sort of intention. When a person dies, we tend to gather together a collection of memories that we can draw upon any time we need or want to connect with our loved one. I have always appreciated this gift very much.

Another thing we may find is a renewed sense of strength and compassion that we didn't know we had. These traits live inside of us and only have the opportunity to shine in times like these.

A third thing may be a new way to navigate the world. Whether we like it or not our world changes when a loved one dies. We therefore find new ways to deal with and approach the positive and negative situations that life presents us with.

What things have you found things in the midst of loss? Have you found strength you didn't know you had? When we have loss in our lives, we are drawn to focus on the loss itself. If it isn't too painful, take a few minutes to think of the things you may have found as well.

Monday, July 16, 2007

spice it up

Have you ever felt that your life is boring? I have. Sometimes I feel like I do the same things day after day. As humans, we tend to get stuck in the same routines without even noticing it. We get up, make our beds, go to work, come home, make dinner, clean the house, have similar conversations, etc. There is definitely purpose and safety in this structure we create. It gives order to this chaos we call life. Yet, this doesn't mean that our set patterns don't get old and bore us at times. When they do, we realize that we must spice things up.

How can we do this? For starters, we can add interesting activities like classes, lectures, concerts, etc. We can also think of innovative ways to bring newness to our relationships, whether it is with a partner, a friend or a family member. The other thing we can do is to bring freshness to the small details of life that only we notice. We might add cinnamon to our coffee, buy a piece of clothing or jewelry, listen to some new music, try a new recipe or buy flowers for our living space.

You may be quite content right now with the level of spice in your life. If not, how will you choose to spice up your days and nights? What ways resonate with and feel manageable to you? If you aren't sure, make it an adventure. Your only risk will be the spices you will encounter along the way!

Thursday, July 05, 2007

perfect timing

When I sit down to have a cup of tea, I always wait for the perfect window when the temperature is neither too hot nor too cool. If I drink hastily, I burn my tongue. If I wait too long, my tea is cold. So, how do I know when the timing is just right?

Is this how it is with life? Are there windows of opportunity that are only open for periods of time and if we don't grab them we miss out? One problem with this theory is that we may not know when the window is open. Another is that if we do not take advantage of an opportunity, we may end up living in a world of regret.

I think opportunities are about faith. Having faith that the right moments will arise when we are ready to enjoy them. I can think of life as missed opportunities or I can choose to see it as a series of perfect timings. If I view my life from this perspective, I am more able to accept not only where I am in life, but who I am as well.

How do you look at opportunities? Do you have regrets about not accepting those that have been offered to you? The wonderful thing about having faith in perfect timing, is that when it is perfect- it just is.

Sunday, June 17, 2007

have courage

In Latin, the word cor is the root for the word coraticum which means heart. This is the known etymology for the word courage, which is also translated as with heart. The root cor is also seen in the Old French corage, and later found its way into the English word courage.

I often use the expression 'have courage.' For me, having courage means to take life head on- with passion, lust, vigor and bravery. The irony is that when I need to live life such vitality, I tend to be stumbling or in need of support in some way. It is in these moments, when I am reminded of the origin of the word courage. I return to the idea of living 'with heart' and I am renewed. The notion that courage is synonymous with heart reinforces the fact that courage comes from an inner strength that I carry with me all the time.

Are you able to 'have courage' when you are going through a hard time? Can you look within your own heart and see the courage there? Even if you don't think so, it's there- believe me, it's there.

Thursday, May 31, 2007

beautiful question

Are you a curious person? I am definitely one who questions. I want to get to the bottom of things- to know the truth behind it all. One of my mentors said, "The most beautiful question is: What is the real answer?" When he said this, I immediately asked myself, what IS the real answer? Is there ever a real answer? If so, how do we find it?

Sometimes the "real answer" isn't easy to come to, especially when the question is an important one with larger consequences. When I hear the words "real answer" I tend to think, "right answer." But I think it is more than that. The "right answer" is about what is logical and rational. The "real answer" is what is solid and grounded- what is natural. For me, the process of finding what is "real" takes time. I can't make a pros and cons list or just sort it out. I must sit with the question and wait patiently for the answer.

Are you searching for "real answers" in your life right now? How will you allow the natural answers to arise? I encourage you to continue questioning and searching. Inevitably, the beautiful questions will be revealed and real answers will emerge.

Wednesday, May 23, 2007

easy people

I spent the afternoon with a good friend and as we walked, we spoke about the concept of "easy people." The Nields, a great folk duo, sum it up perfectly when they sing:

And I choose you to take up all of my time
I choose you because you're funny and kind
I want easy people from now on

I definitely crave easy people in my life, but who doesn't? The thing is though, surrounding ourselves with "easy people" doesn't necessarily mean surrounding ourselves with people who we don't have complex relationships with. In fact, I would dare to say that the easiest of people come from relationships that both people have invested time and energy to build a solid foundation. From there, both people can "sink into easy" as my friend put it. There is an ease with which they can be themselves because they feel both valued and understood.

I love the concept of easy people- and of choosing them. Have you chosen easy people in your life? How do we go about getting to the point of "easiness"? As you think about your relationships, which ones bring a smile to your face? Which ones do you want to be easier?

I hope we can all find easy people and without even knowing it- be the easy person for others.

Wednesday, May 16, 2007

setting the bar

In school, I always strived to get all A's. But who didn't, right? Now, even though I haven't been in school for years, I still hold the bar very high for myself- sometimes even too high for my own good. Lately, I am realizing that I put a lot of pressure on myself to live up to some idea of what I should be doing with my life. (So much so, that it trickles over into my blog to the extent that sometimes I have trouble posting because I feel like my words and art aren't "good enough").

As I have shared some of these thoughts aloud with my friends and family, I have discovered that it is only internal pressure. No one is watching me or disappointed in me. It is me who is expecting this high level of achievement and standard. That being said, it is not negative to set the bar high. However, we do need to be forgiving and allow ourselves permission to meet the bar where it seems to be settling at any given moment.

Are you setting the bar too high for yourself? Too low? Perhaps, you are feeling just right. If you are struggling with this like I am, I think the key to remember, like most things, is that we need to be more than okay with where we are- we need to embrace it.

Wednesday, May 02, 2007

i forgive myself

I have recently started a practice of saying, "I forgive myself" each night as I go to sleep. A friend introduced the idea to me and I thought it would be an interesting ritual to adopt. So far, it has been quite difficult. Not the saying it part, but truly believing the words- to completely forgive myself for everything I have done during the day. So much happens in one day, and as I'm sure you know intimately, we are our own harshest critics.

I think that there are two parts to forgiving ourselves. The first is acknowledging the interactions during the day that we would have changed and the second is letting go of our judgments. That being said, I have found it to be stressful to acknowledge all the pieces of the day that I wish could have been different. I have chosen to spend time on "letting go." As I lie in bed and say those three words, "I forgive myself," I let myself deeply sigh and try to take in the meaning.

Are there barriers preventing you from forgiving yourself? Are there ways we can help each other in this process? Even though it is a struggle, I hope that we are all on a path towards true forgiveness.

Saturday, April 21, 2007

minds that worry

I am proud to tell you that two more of my poems were recently published in Word Riot. You can see them here. Here is one of the poems:


All my life
I've never known
The burden
Stiff and worn
That sits
In minds
That worry

In rereading the poem, I wonder what I was thinking when I wrote it. Why would I write that I've never known the burden of a mind that worries? I worry all the time! When I was little, my parents used to call me the "Worried Walrus," a nickname taken from a Sweet Pickles book (a children's book series, now out of print). In the book, Worried Walrus is so concerned about the future and what might happen, that he misses out on the gift of the present.

Our minds naturally drift towards the future and the possibilities, both good and bad that might happen. There is definitely purpose in this, and still it is essential to bring our minds back and be mindful of the present. When we can completely participate in the present, we can fully enjoy what life has to offer. It seems simple enough, right? Not quite. It is a lot to ask of ourselves- to go from being in our heads to completely participating in the moment. Right now, I am working on just noticing when I am worrying or spending time in my thoughts and not in the situation. Eventually, the noticing will naturally evolve into participation in the now.

I invite you to think about the burden of worry in your mind and if you would like to change it. What steps can you take? And most of all... what is waiting for you in the present?

Saturday, April 14, 2007

crazy wild words

In my poetry class this week, we had two poets talk with us about their processes. One poet spoke about how she is a perfectionist and has to feel completely satisfied with a line before she can move on to the next. The other poet shared about how he just keeps writing and revises later.

Lately, I have been feeling stuck. My words aren't flowing like they have in the past. It is not for lack of inspiration or creativity. In the moment of interaction between the pen and paper, my self-judgment and self-criticism swoop in with a vengeance and paralyze me.

One method I have been using to deal with this problem is to start writing and let the words take control. So, here is me, letting go, spilling words and not being afraid to fail on the page:

Crazy wild words riding bareback on brown horses through meadows soft with pansies fit to do nothing but look flimsy and act flimsier in no contention and fight against the raging wind in a gust of gusto and anger against the night sky. Oh, the fights they have. The dreams they devour. They eat each other's guts with the pleasure of fine guests at the most desirous of restaurants, sitting politely at tables set for twenty using freshly pressed napkins to wipe slobbery spit from their drooling mouths.

Friday, April 06, 2007

yours to hold

Sometimes it's hard to admit or to say out loud that we are special or have wonderful qualities. Maybe it is just that we are humble or that in our society we are taught not to shout our amazing attributes from the rooftops. For some reason, it seems much more common to hear people putting themselves down than singing their own praises.

In a way, just knowing our special qualities is enough. It is almost like having magical superpowers. We have secrets that no one else knows, until we choose to share them. In that way, we are in control of whom we share with and how much we choose to reveal. These beautiful aspects are yours to cherish and hold close.

What are your amazing qualities? Do you acknowledge your spectacular characteristics? Do you reveal them often? Of course, it is up to you, who you choose to share with, but remember, it would be our privilege to be present when you do.

Friday, March 30, 2007

in between

The Jewish holiday of Passover begins on Monday night. The retelling of the story of the exodus of the Jewish people from Egypt asks us to identify with the theme of going from slavery to freedom.

I have always been taken by the idea that often we talk about going from slavery to freedom, as if it is a quick jaunt from one to the other. It is true that physically, one goes from being enslaved to being free. However, going from an emotional or spiritual state of enslavement to a state of freedom is a much longer process.

At most points in our lives, we are probably somewhere in the "in between." We can remember what it feels like to be in the difficult place and we can imagine ourselves free of hardship. Yet, in order to become emotionally and spiritually free of these burdens, we must go through the "in between"- a place of struggle, confusion, growth, potential and healing.

Are you in a state of "in between"? What is it like? Can you feel the potential and growth? Is it painful? Do you have others who will support you? As you ponder these questions, think about one more- where can I find beauty and joy in the "in between"?

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

choosing patterns

We all have our emotional patterns that we use to navigate the world. We have created these patterns consciously and subconsciously in order to deal with the various situations we have experienced.

At times, it may seem that our patterns are in control of us and are nearly impossible to change. These patterns are all we know and even though they may be unhealthy, we feel some level of comfort in them.

Lately, I have been seriously looking at my patterns and evaluating the benefits and disadvantages of keeping them around. I have chosen a few to challenge and change. Picking new patterns is not something that comes easily or quickly. Like anything else, it is a process of learning and growing. As difficult as it is, I am willing to try it to see if I can achieve a more positive result in order to live a healthier life.

Do you think we have the power to choose new patterns? Do you think about changing any of yours? What are the steps you can take to change them? If you do choose to change your patterns, remember, it takes time, but there may be shapes and colors that you could never have even imagined.

Monday, March 19, 2007

surrounded by silence

I am lucky to be a part of a women's group that gathers at the new moon to celebrate and learn with each other. Usually we do an activity that involves expression of some sort- discussion, art, craft, writing, etc... However, last night we spent our time in silence. We prayed, meditated and thought.

At first I was a bit apprehensive. Not only did I resist the idea of spending a long period of time in silence, but I also didn't want to lose precious moments engaging with friends. I spend a lot of time in silence or trying to fill it with something external (i.e. music, television). I do enjoy being quiet, but at times I feel lonely. However, being surrounded by these strong beautiful women, I felt safe enough to delve into the silence and stay there. I was able to be silent and feel embraced at the same time. We were able to engage with each other on a level beyond outward expression.

Have you ever experienced this? If not, do you have a relationship where you can explore this idea? For just a moment, I encourage you to imagine being surrounded in silence.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Submission 2

As you know, I have submitted my poetry to various publications and have had some poems accepted. (See my previous post: Submission).

I have also received many rejections. In some senses, the rejection piece has been easier than I thought. I try to think about the greater context of the struggling artist and all of the poets that I look up to and admire. I also try to imagine all the other poets sending in their poems hoping and wishing to be accepted and published.

At other more vulnerable moments, the rejection does not come as easily. Each poem I write is a mixture of my thoughts and emotions spilled on the page. I then carefully select my most poignant poems and submit them to what I think are the publications that best fit the tone and style of the poem. To receive a form letter or even a personal rejection can sometimes hurt in a way you don't expect.

Even though I have written all about rejection, I have been blessed to have another poem accepted and published on the web. The publication is Right Hand Pointing. The issue is entitled "Very Short Poetry." Here is the poem:

Blue Screen

All settles
In the graying brows
Of an octogenarian
Watching Jeopardy
Waiting for the question
To come

Monday, March 12, 2007

gentle strength

Craft idea inspired by Keri Smith

Nothing is so strong as gentleness, and nothing is so gentle as true
-- Ralph Sockman

People are always telling us to “be gentle with yourself” or “be easy on yourself” when you’ve had a hard day or you are going through a hard time. For a long while, I thought this meant that I could do whatever I wanted to feel better like- sleep for hours, eat sugar, watch tons of television, etc. (what I would now deem “unhealthy” behaviors). It wasn’t until a couple of years ago through talking to various people, when I realized that being “gentle” with myself actually means loving and taking physical, spiritual and mental care of this thing we call our “self.” It means doing things that bring you joy and soothe your soul. For me, this may mean making a healthy meal, taking a luscious bath, going on a long walk, talking with a friend or writing poetry. I am not suggesting that I always choose to go for a run or paint instead of sitting on the couch watching tv. But, I do understand that taking care of myself is a state of mind and it comes from a place of self-respect. I now recognize that I am precious and something worth being gentle with. I have a strong feeling that you are too.

Monday, March 05, 2007

it rained solid

The other day, my friend and I did a poetry exercise where we both started with the same first line and wrote from there. My poem came out in the form of prose and I thought I'd share it with you today.

It rained solid that afternoon when the earth felt right. brown earth. ready for new water. to soak. to feel. to pray. to dance. to let the fire flow. to witness the growth of beauty. the solid rain creating paths lined with roots delving deep into the soul of things. the flesh of mud. aching to reach the core of it all. the orange ball of life stretching and moving to find the secret places hiding even from themselves. the rain hides. pounds and hides. we never notice the hiding. where do you go, dear friend? when your drops fall away? to a magical place of gentleness and joy. to a magical place of gentleness and joy.

Tuesday, February 27, 2007


I am the type of person who has a strong sense of intuition. This applies not only to interactions and daily situations, but to larger issues as well. For most of the big decisions in my life, I have felt large shifts inside when my intuition guides me to action. There have been times when I have followed my intuition and moments when I have disregarded it completely. When I have followed it, everything has seemed to fall into place and I have felt grounded and settled. When I have taken opposite action, negative outcomes have usually ensued.

Lately, though, I have been doing some soul searching. I have big questions that need answering. During this time, I cannot tell whether my intuition has no opinion, or whether I am not listening carefully enough. Is it possible that my intuition is just taking a back seat on this one? Just relaxing and letting things settle out on their own? More likely (my intuition just stirred-there must be something here) there are blocks preventing me from truly hearing my intuition’s voice right now.

How do I remove these obstacles? How do I take action to create the space needed to hear my old friend, intuition?

I just don't know right now. However, I think I will start with my first intuition- taking a deep breath…

Tuesday, February 20, 2007

bursting into joy

We often use the term “bursting into tears.” It is an experience most people can relate to. The other afternoon, I had an experience that I can only describe as “bursting into joy.” It was quite a moment, as you can imagine. I was changing the channel on my car radio and a live version of one of my favorite songs came on that I had never heard before. My body rushed with elation and I was smiling from ear to ear.

What a wonderful sensation. Have you ever burst into joy? If so, what gave you such a feeling? If not, can you imagine it? What does it smell like? Does it have a sound? Does it linger in your mouth?

Even if we don’t feel the power of these emotions on a daily basis, sometimes just knowing that they are below the surface is enough… and at any moment, we may just burst!

Thursday, February 15, 2007

loud laughter

Art courtesy of a dear friend

Anyone who knows me, knows that I adore laughing. Not just small, token laughs. Not just little teehees. I LOVE to laugh...loudly. I believe in laughing with your whole body, letting the laughter in as well as out.

Some people may think that really letting go is not their style or that the setting must be appropriate for them to throw their head back and let out a good chuckle. Loud laughter doesn't just come naturally, as most people want to believe.

Loud laughter is like an emotion- you have to "let" yourself feel it. There is a single point in laughter when you realize that you can release- and if you do- you may lose control or draw attention to yourself or... really FEEL. It is a choice. And only you can make it. I choose to make it over and over. I do feel vulnerable, but the delight is worth it. Before I know it, I hear my own voice echoing throughout the room and see others laughing beside me. It is a moment of pure joy.

I encourage you to go beyond laughter and laugh loudly. I promise- joy is waiting.

Friday, February 09, 2007

learning the grey

Change is most often a complicated process that spans an underestimated length of time. The reality is, change is messy. It is big mixture of goods, bads and mediocres. We cannot have change without feeling some sort of loss, even in the most positive of cases. We do change without noticing, but a significant piece of change lies in our self-awareness. This is the piece where we must learn the grey.

Lately, I have been making some big changes in my life. I have been getting to know the grey like a friend. When I look closely, I can see its multitude of colors, the purples, reds, blacks, browns, yellows, etc... The muddiness separates to reveal the possibilities this transition can bring and the places that I have been. It is a smattering of colors in every range.

How does one spend time learning the grey and sitting with it? Most of us shove it aside as quickly as it comes. We want things to go back to “normal” or get to the place we want something to “be.” It is the uncomfortable space in between that proves to be the richest. It is neither black nor white. It is all of the colors mixed together. It is the rawness of it all. It is the place where you get to learn who it is you want to be.

As you encounter change, may you embrace the grey and discover its many colors and textures. You may just find your own true self.

Saturday, February 03, 2007


Every time I send a poem away for consideration in a publication, I enter into a vulnerable space- a place of submission. I submit my poetry, my words and my creations. But more than that, I submit a piece of myself to be judged by others.

Amongst the rejections, four publications have accepted my poetry! Two of them are currently on the web (I will let you know when the others are published). The publications are All Things Girl and The Hiss Quarterly. Click here and here to view the poems.

Lately, I have been noticing the anxiety created by waiting to hear back from the many publications that have my poetry. This space reminds me of moments within relationships when we share pieces of ourselves, in other words, submit, in order to reap the benefits of being seen and of knowing another person intimately. Submitting to this process has created loss in my life, but much brilliance as well.

By surrendering ourselves in this world, we choose to engage. We know that the place between submitting and being rejected or accepted can be uncomfortable. And yet, we continue to risk being vulnerable with the hopes of connecting. As we open ourselves to possibility in this world, let us remember the beauty that lies in submission.

Monday, January 22, 2007

in my hands

I have been thinking about the purpose of hands. People don't usually think about them, or at least I don't. But, in pondering my hands, I began to appreciate them very deeply. I did a piece of art about my hands and their meaning. The following is a list of some of the actions that my hands do:

reaching, loving, touching, art-ing, collage-ing, writing, talking, waiting, living, breathing, wishing, washing, helping, grabbing, holding, sensing, grasping, clawing, telling, screaming, tickling, drawing, caressing, letting go, trading, growing, laughing, crying, squeezing, coloring, brushing, pouring, cooking, drying, being in silence, tasting, covering, praying, cupping, alternating, using, believing, hoping, sharing, giving, raging, feeling, calming, enjoying, relishing, curling, dying.

As I did this exercise, I was struck by my own words. Most of the uses seemed familiar- writing, sensing, growing. Others surprised me- raging, clawing, screaming. The piece taught me that just like my hands, I am a complex person with many facets, even those I don't normally recognize.

Take a moment to think about your own hands. How do they serve you each day? How are they an expression of you? Enjoy this process… and remember, it is in your hands.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

a part of all that

Have you ever had one of those days where you opted to take the long way home? Today was one of those days for me. Choosing the alternate route allowed me to walk with the sunset.

Dar Williams sings a beautiful line in her song "After All"

The sun rose with so many colors it nearly broke my heart
It worked me over like a work of art
And I was a part of all that

It is an interesting idea to feel a part of something. The "something" piece can vary i.e. a relationship, a community, the universe. I love the notion of being a part of something so much larger than myself that I can almost observe it from a distance. No matter how small I feel sometimes, I am still an important part of the whole.

Maybe my spirit is a part of the sunset I saw today.

And it is a part of me...

Thursday, January 11, 2007

here it is...

May I officially introduce, my button frame! It took a long while to get all of the supplies and complete the project, but I did it. I smile every time I look at those lovely buttons. The second step was to figure out what to put in the frame. I found a fabulous quote in Journal of Solitude by May Sarton. I read the book a couple of years ago and had underlined a passage that spoke to me:

It is only when we can believe that we are creating the soul that life has any meaning, but when we can believe it- and I do and always have- then there is nothing we do that is without meaning and nothing that we suffer that does not hold the seed of creation in it.

As it turns out, many people are drawn to this quote. Strangely, this is not the first time that this has happened to me. When I read On The Road by Jack Kerouac, I found a quote that I adored and later came to find out that it is one of Kerouac's most famous lines:

The only people for me are the mad ones, the ones who are mad to live, mad to talk, mad to be saved, desirous of everything at the same time, the ones who never yawn or say a commonplace things, but burn like fabulous roman candles exploding like spiders across the stars and in the middle you see the blue center light pop and everybody goes "AWWW!"

How do some people have the ability to identify a universal feeling or thought? Where do those words come from? I often think about the various ways we can combine words and the beauty of expression. What are your words? How do you express them?

Let us all be open to the words of others- and ourselves. We may just find some gems...

Monday, January 08, 2007

what sends you?

I saw The Holiday this weekend. It brought many smiles to my face. In the last scene, the cast dances to “You Send Me” sung by Aretha Franklin. I have been thinking about this idea of sending. defines “to send” as “to delight or excite”. I can see where this comes from. If something delights or excites you, it sends you to a different place, a place of elation and bliss.

Here is a little poem that will hopefully send you.

A butterfly sat down next to me
To whisper contemplations and joys
Days made of honey light
Spilling into morning sighs

It shifted its wings
To show colors of the night
Patterned images reflecting stars

Longing for rides on rivers
Gliding alongside tall trees
Visited by chipmunks and ants

Flights sailing over days of blue
Discovering newly formed caterpillars
Awaiting worlds of change

Wednesday, January 03, 2007


We tend to make big resolutions on New Years. The word resolution is an interesting one- I resolute to do something. It sounds strict and finite. I prefer the word intention. With intention, the idea and hope exists without a feeling of guilt or shame when the task is not perfectly accomplished.

I too am a culprit of making grandiose resolutions on January 1st. However, I do set intentions for myself every day. I set intentions at various points throughout the day- in the shower, as I leave my apartment, before I go to bed, etc… I surround myself with physical reminders of my intentions as well. I also change my intentions every day.

Today, my intention is to grow. I would like to grow in wild vivid ways. To know that I am rooted in the earth and my branches are strong and free.