Thursday, May 7, 2015

broken wings


they keep flying
       gathering nectar
do they know
                their wings
     are not whole?

                                        no matter
                                            

nutrient gifts these beauties

                                                              too

Tuesday, May 5, 2015

Remaining in an Open Heart through Expansion and Contraction

It is just not possible to stay in the high of magic days. That is not the point. I attended twelve step meetings for years and heard people over and over again confessing their idea that the goal was to never feel bad if they followed the steps. And I have had this illusion take hold more than once around what staying in my open heart means. Being in an open heart is not about which emotions are currently flowing through. Feeling love is not only euphoria. Feeling love is allowing everything and staying with an open heart. Sitting under the apple tree I am captivated by the full range and degree of open blossoms. I don't judge the closed blossom as less, in fact to my eye it has a hue more enchanting than the fully open neighbor. Both and rather than either or. So these ordinary days are my opportunity to practice staying with my heart fully open and be gentle as I feel less than stellar in my emotions.

Thursday, April 30, 2015

Mystical Hummingbird

They came to sit in my hands, twice, in one day. Their timing as subtle and brilliant as dolphin. Each time it was after a phone call with people that have presented me with the most refined opportunities to love. People who have offered me lessons on the difference between seduction and love. Martin Prechtel says Love is not about what I want....it is about what Love wants. Seduction is acting in ways to get what I want. In both of these relationships I have deeply longed for what I want. In one for decades. In the other for years. On this day when hummingbird came to land in my hand I made a ceremony to release a particular pattern of fear around staying open in my heart. A week before I had made ceremony to release patterns about what I need and want around one of these relationships.  I participated in a ceremony to let love in. During these calls I felt love and seduction both suggesting how to be present and chose to rest in love, free from the grip of what I want. Hummingbird came to me after each call. I felt love vibrate through me, very high light. I receive it as a healing for my own heart and for those two special humans I adore. There is such spaciousness in the love of a hummingbird....big freedom....and it is a tender gift to shepherd with great care.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

The rewards of a deep Sit.

Lilac is a plant kingdom equivalent of Shibuya Crossing. I didn't take photos when I was in Shibuya, I was in awe and having an aha moment. Take a look at these images for an idea. Lilac feels the same way. I am compelled to go out each day and sit. I watch the air traffic above wishing it was possible to capture all the action this plant calls in. This plant is where IT is happening.
It is deeply soothing to simply sit and watch the show. I am learning much nuance about butterfly. How to sit so they come in close. How to move so they don't all scatter and disappear. How to melt myself and be with the entire audio, visual, sensual scene. From the most humble to regal, all come here for what can only be called a love in. All these beings come to make love with lilac. And lilac provides her life sustaining nectar. Euphoria in the garden. My heart makes love with all of this. They make love with me.

Sunday, April 19, 2015

Oh for the Love of Lilacs

Truthfully? I have spent most of the day finding reasons to be under the lilac blooming in my little secret garden. Oh I was very virtuous and Got Things Done...like pulling the grasses growing in the paths and garden beds. I did some research via reading on how to live more with an open heart. I spoke on the phone with my sister, daughter and dear friend. I wrote and took a few photos. But mostly I sit still in amazement at all of the multitudes who were also visiting the lilacs. I need a field guide to butterflies, there are so many. The queen arrived today, swallowtail...and she stayed a long time and came to the luscious cluster right in front of my face offering me a long gaze upon her magnificence. It is likely grace at work that my camera battery was dead at the time. I let myself follow her path, see her wings illuminated by sunshine, the contrast of her pale yellows with the deep purple panicles a sensational feast.
I'm not sure if I will get a photo of her highness. But I did find the humble other with her broken wing as enchanting. And deeply touching. I wish I could ask her to stop for me and pose while the light came from behind her wings. A soft luminescent tigers eye brown flashed in those moments. The bees, there surely must be a field guide for  bees as well? They are abundant. And maybe the divine herself/himself comes in the form of hummingbird.

This is a magical day. Hummingbird spent a lot of time in the lilac. The longer I sat in stillness, the more comfortable this being became. Again, just in front of my face on the closest blossoms. If you know the particular medicine hummingbird offers then you understand the rare gift of having this creature land in my hands. Just after a phone call with my sister. Hummingbird conjures love as no other medicine. And the lilacs symbolize the first emotions of love. Once is an experience of ecstasy...and today it happened twice. Again, after a phone call with a dear friend. Sitting under the lilacs in the research of what opens the heart...I am graced by the very bird that makes heart opening their business. WOW. May you also receive the joy....

Friday, April 3, 2015

Letting Go


 These last weeks Dandelion has been of deepest fascination. Their resilience, abundance, healing properties, tenacity, tastiness….all of this has captured me….along with their photogenic quality especially when viewed close up.

They also almost never grow alone, they are social. And now that I have encouraged them to grow in the lawn there are legions of them that delight me every spring. Last summer I stopped watering the lawn. In the wilderness where these dandelions grow the lawn has been what I’ve considered the fire safety zone around the house. So the decision to let it go brown felt edgy to me. I cut it close to the ground so truthfully there was very little organic matter to burn. The only things that remained green were chicory, rosemary and dandelion. Those tap roots must be fabulous storage tanks.

This year with the spring rains the dandelions are lush. And I am in love with them. I’ve been feeling in to the metaphor of dandelion these weeks of lent, the period of time in the catholic faith of my childhood between Ash Wednesday and Easter Sunday. The church I attend most often now is the Church of the Holy Wilderness as one brother in law calls it. So Dandelion has been giving me a series of sermons these weeks.

Today I found one dandelion riveting. The photo captures a moment when those seeds that have been growing together, gathered on their single flower journey, have become the seeds themselves about to fly off into the world. They are so spectacular together to my eye.

A woman I dearly love died just a few short days ago. She was to me like one of those dandelion seed parachutes, radiant in her expression of love. She let her seed leave the safe place of attachment to the earth, while the rest of us are as yet still becoming those seeds awaiting our own time to fly.

Dandelion tells me there is a possibility to be as love while I am still here…to open fully, to glow in beauty, to bloom wherever I am, to congregate with others, to offer nourishment, to grow my roots deep, and then let go and fly when the time is right…

Opening and Closing the Heart

It is clear that my expectations, assumptions or judgments about others or life are the teeny (or massive) hair triggers that operate the energetic heart valve. The physical heart keeps on pumping but the flow of heart wisdom, the invisible pulse of love, responds to something else.

I am experiencing the switch mechanism as intention and the inertia to overcome default closing due to my own programming/patterning/habits exists as a choice. I thought at one point that my heart was either/or: open/closed. But the heart is much more fluid than that.

I keep my heart opening. That is my intention and choice.

Why bother? Everything is a stake. My life is a journey towards inevitable death. Any accomplishments, the house, car, clothes, friends, lovers, children....none of them will go with me. I've been seeing how I have leaned into the real and imaginary (ideas) objects of my life to keep me safe, offer me some sense of security, reassurance that life is somehow more 'solid' than it is. And here is the paradox. We live in this solid physical world with jobs, homes and all the rest. Ideas about how to earn a living, who to relate to and how. All worthy pursuits.

But without a choice to move through this world living in love.......??

Sometimes love feels like the highest peak of the tallest mountain I will never be able to acclimate to. And then the invisible switch directs the flow with that wee intention, something shifts around once again I can breathe the rarified air of love flowing through me.

I was talking with a friend this morning about living in love. We both agreed this takes courage. Courage because love cracks open the heart, the inner sight and emotional feelings so that much is felt, understood.

Love likely has more poets, songwriters, spiritual beings and artists of all types dedicating lives to capturing and describing that ineffable state. What I am looking at right now is how often deep love means that boundaries are much clearer...because love of self is at the top of the list with this flow. That might mean having to tell someone else something they do not want to hear and I don't want to have to say. For sure living at high altitude loving comes with many cautions. Much easier, in many ways, to live in the valley. Thankfully we are fluid as humans and can actually make these choices, however easy, hard, necessary or ridiculous they might appear to be. I try to be gentle with myself when I would rather live down in the valley. This is not a matter of right or wrong.

The choice is the research love, of living in loving. A matter of getting curious about what gets in the way of my loving....and a matter of practicing how to work with the flow and keep it coursing in the direction of the open heart even when the inevitable coursing towards closing also comes.


Wednesday, April 1, 2015

Speaking Your Voice, Singing Your Song


I was driving through San Francisco along Park Presidio to take the Golden Gate bridge to get to Bolinas. Most of the time I travel these streets there are people who catch my attention. I love the freedom the city offers and people accept in expressing who they are and what they believe. I frequently see freedom in fashion or hair, open artistry of life. The intersections are not quiet. I’ve wondered about the tiny old women I see waiting for a bus or the teens on their cell phones seemingly oblivious to traffic. It is all too easy to live without engaging the other humans streaming right alongside of me. Unrelated, disconnected, we travel parallel to one another and yet without openly acknowledging that the unseen pulse of life is moving through us all. At the very least we are sharing the air, the same air that has moved in and out of countless lungs before me and will continue to move through others after coursing through my own tissue.

He was shouting into the traffic though I have no idea what he was saying. I wonder what had so captivated his heart that letting everyone know was paramount. It might seem to be obvious given the objects he holds and wears. But it wasn’t the words I could not hear, it was the passion of his desire to share regardless of how he might appear that affected me. The courage to be so dedicated to his belief that he could surrender attachment to the ‘normal’ boundaries of society and bring his message to the streets for anyone who might pass by. The message I received was to be willing to let my own voice be spoken, offered, to value that I too have some small gift to offer to the chorus of life. We each do.

Monday, March 30, 2015

Glibness

"fluent and voluble but insincere and shallow"

This is not what life in the wilds encourages. It is nearly impossible to live in a teeny village and maintain the glibness which is an all too common attribute of city life.

I had the serendipity of meeting a community member at the Post Office, a place where everyone collects their mail. He was in the midst of a meltdown. You know those 'invisible' people who sleep in the doorways in the city? Here in the teeny village we know their name. When they have a crisis because they don't have all the gifts, talents and abilities many of us do, they have a melt down right where they are, in front of the Post Office as it happened today.

This dear man was anything but glib. He was as vulnerable and sincere and clear sighted about his life as anyone I have ever known when he told me he was beyond help. That putting a gun into his mouth would be a way of finding solution.

I asked him to please not do that....my cousin did this two months ago and every nerve cell in my body was vibrating as he spoke those words.

I realize that in the context of a city life this type of encounter would usually be met with either something like avoidance or at best a phone call to 'the authorities'. Here in the wilderness this man is my neighbor, someone I know by name. I am, my neighbors are, the 'authorities'.

His distress activated in me a call to action. I was able to help him in some teeny ways and I let others of kind heart know the level of vulnerability he shared and they are also taking steps
When Barbed Wire is deeply embedded a tree will eventually die...
 to make sure he eats.

I have recently in my life been in active meditation on gratitude....I am so very grateful that I am not beyond help as this man sees (possible quite clearly) himself. That I can take baby steps in the direction of my dreams, that I even have dreams which have a chance of being real, that I have a place to eat, food to eat, the ability to navigate a bit of the complexity of every day life in America without having a public meltdown.

Please send your best thoughts and prayers for this dear hearted man...who shall remain nameless...send every best thought you might imagine you would need if you could not function and you were loved....love him....please.....love him NOW....

Saturday, March 28, 2015

The Power of Ceremony

I am a big fan of using small fire ceremony for the release and surrender of old and the invitation of intentions for new. Many would call this prayer. That works.

Right now I appreciate the ceremony of laying the sticks, making visual offerings, taking time to write out what I am releasing....speaking it out loud before I strike the match.

I've been experiencing these tiny ceremonies as the invisible spearhead moving before me, creating room for me to move and live in life in a new way. The heat of the fire is magic alchemy, accelerating the process of change. I built the small offering in the photo on a tiny river beach near my home. I've been working with identifying and then letting go of the parts of my relationship to the father of my children which no longer serve anything good. Why? So I can live life as freely and creatively as possible, in love and compassion.

Friday, March 27, 2015

For the People in my Life



I spoke in a group of women a few months ago about having met the love of my life. They clapped and cheered. "I'd like to introduce her to you. Myself," I announced. Making this declaration out loud has had some quite astonishing consequences.

I hold you sweet women (and you dear ones in other circles) forever in my house of gratitude for creating a beautiful place to be able to speak that truth, hope, prayer, intention of forever self love out loud. I am grateful that in having received me you also hold some teeny invisible threads that help to hold together the container for that self love to grow, even if you have long forgotten what I said.
We are both the nectar and the harvesters of nectar.

Many things have begun to grow in my life that I had not thought possible. I do love the analogy of our lives as soil. My life soil had been cultivated until it was quite nearly depleted in vital nutrients and I nearly died. We all have these stories. Some of what led to my depletion...the death of my dear mother who was my best friend, my beloved children leaving the nest, a divorce that ended with my spouse hating me even though he initiated the divorce, a rebound engagement where a long time friend swept me off my feet and then tossed me away. Incorrect sourcing of my creative passion.

I think I understand that I had to have three long years of being inert, as much as that time was utterly disorienting. Depleted soil takes a long time to regenerate. It takes conscious intention to investigate how depletion occurred and to rebuild soil once it has come to that point. Until the soil is replenished nothing can grow.

Today I am grateful to be alive. I am grateful in this spring that creative expression, which I had thought lost to me forever, is beginning to grow once again. Somewhere deep in the root system of my being it never died. I am cautiously optimistic and deeply reverent for the return of this gift.

There is much I could say about the inert time. I will likely refer to it over and over again in many ways in these blogs in sincere attempts to encourage others. But the bottom line was that I had to go through the dark times to discover who was always there with me and learn to love her and trust her and cherish her deeply. She is the one who will never leave me. The love of my life. Love.

It does not matter to me if you like to say She, or for that matter He and call the one (or One) who is with me someone other than myself. What I learned in the dark is that there is room for so much....and that where I fundamentally source everything in my life from....this is an ongoing Research Project about love....

To the lovely ladies of the circle, of my life....blowing you kisses borne on the breeze of violet perfumed love...for your beauty, vulnerability, the courage you offer by showing up for yourself and for all of us...

To the lovely men in my circles, in my life... nourishing love for your deep tender hearts and all it takes to be a male bodied person in these times....love coming to you through the beeswax scented fir blossoms intoxicating you with desire for opening even more...

Thursday, March 26, 2015

Trauma Creates a Trailhead into a Healing Path

I was in a Mystery School many years ago studying with Carol Kamen. She ran an exercise called something like "how I got them to do this to me" in which we detailed out some awful event and tried to frame it in a way that brought full responsibility onto ourselves. It is a really interesting exercise and I am grateful for it.

All these years later and I now see that 'trauma', whatever it is, creates an opportunity to heal. A bold statement. I've been the 'victim' of cruelty by others. Some would call it 'uncalled for'. At this point in life I admit I am curious about how my inner wisdom might have been 'calling for' everything that comes my way, whether it looks good or feels good on the outside or not. A hurt is an opportunity to reflect on what is being mirrored to me about how I am living and showing up in life. The possibility of becoming Whole exists.

I do know that healing happens when I open to that possibility and intend to move in that direction. There are times when I am a reluctant healer, preferring to point my finger at the one who hurt me and stay in my hurt. But when I am clearer I know that no one can hurt me, that most essential me.

I hold myself. I hold the ability to frame how things land with me. And I can also surrender past hurts and allow healing to enter and repattern the parts of me that have held hurt inside.

Tuesday, March 24, 2015

Dreaming Myself Alive



Three years ago today marks the anniversary of my death. It happened suddenly though the symptoms had been there for a few weeks. Even as I write about it I feel the lump in my throat and the involuntary downturn of my mouth as tears press to flow wildly. I must have known I was going to die. I began to cry when I was near him without knowing why. His cruelty was not something I knew about yet but it came as a chill wind in advance of his actions, the way Harry Potter feels Dementors, and before Harry, Frodo felt the Wraithes.

HE killed me. In all honesty I put my own throat out for him to cut, opened my heart up to him. I thought he was alive, a human being, someone with a genuine heart and soul. He was a coward, a fraud, fake. I know this now. He survives by camouflage. His cover is so deep it took me many years to figure this out and only after we became closer than he had ever been to another human being. Then the knives came out and he carved me to bits and left me for dead.

Dying while alive is no tunnel filled with white light. Dying while alive is agonizing. I think I get the fascination with zombies…I was one so I guess others are too. One of the people first on scene told me I was in a spiritual emergency. She helped to frame what would become the next three years. An energetic healer told me I lost nearly all of my chi, the spiritual equivalent of bleeding out.

My life priorities became totally altered. Imagine losing your connection to everything that ever brought you joy or passion. I spent enormous amounts of time sitting in meditation with what was underneath all the feelings of pain and loss. One dear friend literally sat with me to help me know how to be with myself in suffering.

A few days ago I was able to say that his murder of me was a gift. Living in a stripped down way made what is most essential and vital readily apparent once I was ready to experience this. Following the smallest sparks of interest led me into living life from a very different place. It turns out that what HE killed, the places he stuck his knives into, were parts of me that needed to die. He can’t help that he is a vampire and knows where and how to suck the vitality from another. But I now understand that I am the one who holds myself, no one else, and I was not aware of where I was not caring for myself. Now I have learned how to hold myself, to live with wholeness, a holiness, that I did not know before.

There is talk about the caterpillar turning in to the butterfly. I learned about the period of time in which this small being is mush, neither one thing nor the other. I was mush. In the mush there are dreamer cells that are the cells that orient the mush towards new life. Those few cells know when they are being called to orient. I knew it too. The small flames were vivid, having lived for nearly a year in the dark without any sense of a dream, when the cells began to call and orient my life. It is a miraculous gift life holds, this ability to regenerate. I am in awe on this day, three years after I died, that I am once again alive, dreamed alive by life...new and different.

Saturday, March 21, 2015

About Being with Not Knowing

I love stories. I really do. I have gobbled up fiction from the time I was a small child. In the neighborhood I grew up in, there used to be a book mobile. A large RV filled with books. It stopped right across the street from my house every week. My great pleasure was going in to the RV and filling my arms with as many books as I could carry. I traveled all over the world, back and forward in time and into the lives of very different people through the fictional and stories.

These last three years I have read very little. Instead I have become deeply interested in the lives of  people who I encounter on a regular basis. I become intrigued with who they are, how they live, what motivates them. All these stories are happening all around me all the time.

I learned something about the human brain from a lecture I heard a few years back. We have what is known as a Reticular Activating System, RAS. This is the part of us that filters, sees and sorts what is happening all around us. In that same lecture I learned we have this other system, the MSU. For those places that we do not have data our brains do this amazing thing. We Make Stuff Up to explain what we do not see or know.

The thing about written stories is that they have a beginning, middle and end. The lives of people are not so neat. There is not always the way to know and understand. So very often I find myself inventing, Making Stuff Up in an attempt to understand and explain the lives of those around me and my own life. The problem with this way of engaging with life is that it takes up a lot of time and effort and rarely is my MSU correct.

Much more difficult, and a dear friend said 'terrifying, at first' is to realize that I do not know. In a culture that has trained us to have the right answers and 'know', leaning in to not knowing is a very new place to be. Greeting the unexpected or anything that arises with a 'not knowing' attitude asks me to be in curiosity. When it comes to myself and the melody of emotions riding through or the stories I tell to explain my own life to me...staying in 'not knowing' is beginning to create more spaciousness. My one year old grandson does not know anything more than what he is doing in the moment. Can I gift myself with that same freedom? And when it comes to being with others around me....what about greeting whatever arises with the same generous curious place rather than leaping in with my MSU?

Another friend said, "not knowing is the safest place to be". This was in response to my attempts to understand why my brilliant and well loved cousin chose to end his life. And what choosing to not know does is to free me from the mind and return me to what is real and present in front of me now, the only time in which I can truly be here.

Friday, March 20, 2015

Living with the Melody of Emotions

I make a regular long drive once a month. I have nearly 7 hours in the car. I've taken to creating changing playlists on my shuffle device. As time has gone on these playlists change. I went through a very long period of time when all I payed was kirtan, Jai Uttal being my favorite. I mean, I could play one song (Ganesha Sharanam) over and over and over again flying down I-5 in the Central Valley of California. Certain songs cultivate different feeling states in me. I use the music to shift in to a state I want to experience.

What is new, as I am becoming more fluid in allowing my emotions to simply be, arise, be felt and then pass through without creating a story around them....is a discovery of a new way of listening to music.

I listen to a very diverse range of music from Opera to rap and everything in between. I credit one of my brothers and my two children for expanding my musical horizons. My father cultivated a deep love of classical, my mother folk music. So I put together a playlist with piano concertos, James Taylor, Maria Callas, Sublime, Aretha Franklin, Coldplay, Rolling Stones, Jai Uttal, Tom Waits, Metallica, Louis Armstrong, Wilson Pickett, Celtic Bagpipes, Sur Sudha, Carla Bruni, Ze Manel, Cypress Hill, Murray Kyle, Bolot and Nohon Altai and whole lot more.

I discovered that allowing random play of all the different genres to go freely without skipping pieces that I am in the moment not attracted to has given me an unexpected gift. Each piece provokes its feeling state. I might normally be inclined to favorite certain pieces or resist others. But in allowing the play to move freely I am finding that I am becoming much more fluid in moving in my emotional being. Non attachment to any particular state.

And I have been attached to states, clearly, in playing Ganesha over and over, just as in life I prefer some emotions to others. No judgment on this, but it is true. Just finding it so very interesting now to develop my emotional fluidity using this random play of a diverse list. The very act of noticing my resistance to certain pieces then releasing and surrendering is totally fascinating to me. I am letting the music move me through a very large continuum of feeling states. The random nature of shuffle surprises me with what will be placed in line. Maria Callas into Metallica. Talk about learning to shift states!

I am quite ecstatic with this new tool!

Thursday, March 19, 2015

Finding Joy

It isn't too hard when I stop and look around. Joy is everywhere. I've just got to scale back my expectations about when and where I might find it. Or maybe abandon those expectations altogether and look at life as if I am one year old. Everything has the potential to fascinate. When I took my camera outside to take photos of the masses of violets I really had to get down in them to find an angle that worked. I've been enjoying their perfume just wandering through the garden, they are so abundant. But when I got down in them....oh....a friend tells me that violets carry fairy magic. I have to wonder if violets are fairies. There are few flowers so sweet, so alive, so upright...and I noticed today that they mostly seem to face the paths I have made, regardless of the compass. Could be my imagination...but these dear beings offer me sensuous connection to joy.

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Can the Numbers be Sacred?

I wrestle with this all the time....and today it came in so close it weighs heavily. My heart desires to do one thing and the economic numbers say another. The electric company does not weigh in the heart. If the bill is not payed the power is shut off. Paying our bills is considered one piece of what it means to be a grown up. Living according to our means. Finding right livelihood. I am new to this inquiry. How to manage to live in a economic system and also do the work of helping others to heal. I don't think they are mutually exclusive. Discovering how to be both compassionate and also appropriately calculating and staying balanced in the heart, grounded, all these beautiful terms...while looking at people in front of me who have less means than I and being unable, in the moment, to help, is a challenge.

I've written a lot about staying open or being in the heart. I find that I have, in order to live with these unsolvable (to me) discrepancies, had to close my heart. I did not know I was doing this.

Living with an open heart can hurt a lot. It is not airy fairy stuff. It is no wonder I choose to self medicate at times, or avoid, or live in a small bubble so I don't have to encounter what I can not solve or fix. But life continues to thrust me into situations and into the lives of those that offer me these rare opportunities to explore the question....can numbers be sacred....this question will accompany me for some time.

Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Taking Pleasure in the Smallest of Things

The unseasonable warmth of a late winter day allowed me to line dry my bed sheets today. Have you ever inhaled the sweet scent of drying laundry? Mmmmm.....like the violets that bloom nearby. Light fragrance, dampness mingling with warm clean mountain air tinged with fir blossom. The air so delicious I had to follow the path out and wander around.

It is in the simple that being fully present returns to me. I have vision boards of grand plans and ideas. The horizons I aim for. But what about the sea beneath my sails in this moment? I walked into the forest with Mo, the Anatolian Shepherd. I noticed a particular patch of forest where many trees fell this last winter. I sat on one log and watched the lazy flight of small gnats bobbing in the stillness. Mo gnawed on something near my feet that I could not see, the entirety fit into his mouth. He put it down to look after something else. At first it appeared to be some type of fungus, but it was too hard from the sound of his teeth clattering. When I bent over it the form became clear. A Western Pond Turtle pulled so deeply inside the shell i could not see any sign of the head. And the shell must be hard, only the barest scratches from a good five minutes of Mo's jaw work.

I picked up the turtle, reluctant to leave this little haven of peace. But I stepped over downed trees and made my way back towards the pond, turtle in hand. The feel of the feet just barely visible is seductive. I love the scales, the half inch long black nails curving from the feet. The scales are cool, smooth, elegant somehow. As I walked the nose became visible. I plopped her down into the edge of the pond and she sank like a stone. Mo scurried around the surface of the water sniffling madly. I don't know why these turtles navigate land so far from water. A mystery to investigate someday.

I am addicted to sitting in the forest. it has become the place where I give myself permission to be free of all concerns. There are days, like today, when I do not want to leave. I cherish these moments of the simple, when the story falls away.