Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Moving to Refurbished Abbey

Alchemy

The lights will be dimming here as we all move to the newly refurbished Abbey. If you are not able to post at the WordPress based Abbey please let me know and I will sign you in. The Abbess is very excited about the prospect of filling up those new monastic cells with fascinating people from all walks of life.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Happy Birthday Heather!

Medieval scholars were amazed to find that, when roughly translated, this richly adorned manuscript read:

"In centuries to come, there will be a woman who inspires many and brings forth their creativity from within. She will use her unique talent on a marvelous invention called the Internet so she might reach out to those far from her as if she were in the same room. Her name will be Heather and this is a birthday greeting to her in the future."


Happy Birthday Heather and thank you for all your inspiration!

Happy Birthday, Heather



Happy Birthday, Heather.
With all best wishes and love from Carol

Happy Birthday From Duwamish Bay!



TO HEATHER,

HAPPY BIRTHDAY FROM DUWAMISH BAY
AND FROM ALL OF YOUR FRIENDS AT
THE CHAMBER OF HORRORS
OWL CREEK BRIDGE
AND
DEADWOOD HALL

NONE OF US WOULD BE HERE WITHOUT YOU HEATHER!
LOVE FROM
ANITA MARIE

Saturday, August 26, 2006

Raven At The Tea Party

"Happy Birthday Enchanteur!"
copyright Imogen Crest 2006.

Friday, August 25, 2006

Enchanteur's Afternoon Tea for my Birthday

LunaBirthday

le Enchanteur has been cooking up a storm and has made a cake and afternoon tea for my birthday. Since she has been working her fingers to the bone she told me that I better make sure to invite everyone to come to tea.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Croath Head: September

Midnight; the sea surged calm,
Early morning ferocity
Stilled.
My heart beat with the rhythm
Of gentle waves
And the anger within
Washed itself away
As I stared, amazed
At depths rolling shoreward
In peace.

When sea and skyline meet and merge
Beyond sight
We look sometimes to life
Eternal
And well beyond the day just gone.

I saw it all that night;
In a moment of quiet I heard the breeze;
Moon and lamplight cast long shadows
As I walked toward the harbour wall
And sorrow left me.
Salt, white and crystal cleansed my soul;
The sea beckoned in whispers:
I saw the far horizon -
And lost myself.

Jan

Why?

Would it seem weird to the human race if the trees started growing sideways just because we’ve only ever previously seen them grow towards the heavens?

Is that why, when we see someone who hates life we look down on them, like they’re pathetic? Like they have a problem? Like it’s their fault that they don’t fit in the world? Just because they hate life, we look at them with disrespect and disgust?

Why isn’t it the people who like life with the problem? Why aren’t the people who hate life looking down on those who love it with disrespect, disgust, anger? Life cannot exist without death, and death cannot exist without life. Without death, there would be nothing to inspire anyone to live. Without life, there could be no death.

Why don’t we view those that hate life with respect? Respect that they have different views from those we deem normal? We are just getting over racism and sexism, though we still have a long way to go, why cant we stop stereotyping those who have no emotion in their eyes? Those who wish there was another world for them to escape to? Those who do not belong? Those who were born wishing for another world just for them?

Why will someone always think they’re better then anyone else? Why will they make everyone suffer just for them? Why can someone be broken down so many times by someone, and have no one else care? Why, then, do we hate them and look down upon them when we didn’t bother to help them back up after we have watched them fall so many times, watch them scream in anguish as their very souls cry out? Why will when someone is so in need of help turn away from them, in their hour of need, and walk away whistling along the street?

Why then will that person who walked away one day cry out like those they had walked away from, with no care but to helped, thinking they are deserving. Why will a person who beat someone periodically cry out against someone beating them, or a family member or their child? When they had beaten someone’s family member? Someone’s child? Why will a rapist plead for mercy from the death sentence or jail, when they are guilty? When they have no reason to be receiving mercy from any.

Why will a country, a world cry out against terrorism when people die everyday from people? In car accidents? Where drunken fiends get away with murder, simple because of human folly, when we would all condemn those terrorists in less than a second? And why don’t we all cry out about war? All the wars that have past have claimed millions of lives that wanted nothing more than to settle with their families to live a life. A life that didn’t include having to go to war for some sick leader. Are those who condemn others to war really justified? What right do they have to murder thousands for an insult to themselves? If war was nothing more than politicians fighting, there would be no wars. For all politicians do is sit and plot, moving humans like chess pieces in their sick games.

And yet why when faced with a simple answer and a complicated one will humans opt generally for the simpler one? Why will we lie and cheat, deceive and plot all to ease our own suffering? Why in doing so will we not bother to notice the effects it has on those around us? Why when asked a simple question will we lie so that the other person doesn’t think us stupid? Or irresponsible? Or disgusting? Or shameful? Are we so vain and shallow that we will risk destruction for everyone around us just for our own selves? And when we hear of those that are hero’s and martyrs that we automatically put them on a pedestal above ourselves, when all they have done is redeem themselves for themselves? When they have made at least one persons life a little worse than it was? Why do we think they haven’t sinned? Why are politicians so quick on the uptake to say they were brave and almighty, though they mentioned not how the situations could have been avoided, or how at the time they were doing nothing more than bickering over nothing?

Yet there is and isn’t a simple answer. For me it seems that we are doomed to forever misuse the gifts we have. For we will use the brain we were gifted with to plot and commit crimes, with no thought to killing or hurting others. Men will misuse their bodies, and instead of protecting women with their physical superiority, abuse us, though we have born them through the ages. People will misuse power, and the gift to lead, all for the sake of their own greed. It is sickening and yet it goes unpunished. As I write, or speak, and others listen or read a thousand people are crying out for help. Half of those will never find it. Half of those will die. Half of those will wish for something more. Maybe those spat on, being disrespected, disregarded, shamed will ask themselves one day, maybe the trees should grow sideways. Maybe then the world will change.
Dancing on the edge of the blade of consistent life.

Dark Fool
Emily-Rae Temple
“Show me someone who hasn’t sinned, nor committed a crime against any, or spoken out against any, or hurt any by word or any other means, show me this person and I will show you the heavens.”

Wednesday, August 16, 2006

for Jan

Stone bridge

The fields are bare and bleak, quiet, still;
Trees bereft of leaves, black bark, stoical;
Past the farmer's house and barns just a short walk
Along the rutted lane you can listen to the river swell,
And hear the sparrows chirrup, searching food.

At the stone bridge you have to fold your arms,
Lean forward, look over at the water, even though
The winter cold seeps through scarf and gloves;
You jump and stamp your feet, breathe warm air
Into your hands, watch twigs and leaves
Make their way down stream.

In the distance muffled cars and lorries
Go about their business, chase from one town
To the next.
Real life goes on, it stops for no one:
But here, now, at the stone bridge,
Looking way into the distance,
Hearing sparrows, watching water,
Solitary, alone with my thoughts -
Where does it begin and end, real life?
Bleak fields, chirrups, rustling of bushes;
All the real I need.


Jan

Monday, August 14, 2006

Snapshot

The autumn frost glistens and the breeze is sharp,
I watch late afternoon slip into dusk and breathe deep;
How I adore to see the frenzied fall of leaves swirling,
Clash - red, orange, shrieking lemon.
My body shivers from the cold but in the musky air
I smell a garden bonfire - feel alive.

Jan

Sunday, August 13, 2006

Abbey Talismans - Soul Food Hermitage Store

image copyright Heather Blakey 2006.

Saturday, August 12, 2006

Alphabet Story 2

CAT was an adventuresome sort. After all, what good are nine lives if you spend them licking yourself, catching the odd mouse or bird and horking up hairballs? No thank you. Everycat must die sometime and Cat preferred to die gloriously.

“Live hard, die young, and leave a good looking corpse,” as Cat’s F. Scott Fitzgerald quoting Master was fond of saying.

Cat craved adventure and the adventure he craved most was to explore the MOON. How tantalizing it was! Floating just out of reach. Cat used up a few lives trying to jump to it from the tallest tree in the neighborhood. He must get to the moon, come hell or high water!

He went by rocket ship.

Upon his arrival on the moon, Cat was greeted by a ZEBRA and a PENGUIN. As you can imagine, lunar zebras and penguins are not like terra firma zebras and penguins. Lunar Zebra was fuchsia and lime stripped with a shining silver mane, tail, and hooves. Instead of the formal tuxedo look of earthen penguins, the lunar counterpart looked like a badly done tie-dye. However, both were cordial and enthusiastic to show Cat around the place.

Penguin invited Cat and Zebra aboard his BOAT, the Moonbeam. Cat commented on the lack of water for a boat. “Your rocket ship sailed through the ether, so does my boat.” That silenced Cat.

Penguin deftly hoisted sail and navigated as Zebra pointed out the sites of interest.

“This is the Sea of Tranquility,” intoned Zebra with a grand sweep of his leg.

Cat was struck dumb with awe of the beautiful vista. Then he was struck dumb from terror. A huge aquamarine tentacle, then another and yet another! were probing about the inside of the boat. One tentacle brushed Cat’s foot. He gave a strangled ‘mew’ which fetched Zebra’s attention.

“Oh bother,” sighed Zebra, rolling his eyes. Noting Cat’s bristling back he added,”Don’t worry. OCTOPUS is harmless. He’s not dangerous, just annoying.”

Penguin pulled out a box of jelly doughnuts from the boat’s locker. Giving half to Zebra they threw the doughnuts pell mell out of the boat. The tentacles withdrew and Penguin gunned the engine.

“Good riddance,” muttered Penguin. Turning to Zebra he asked, “Where to, matey?”

Zebra replied without hesitation. “To the JACK-IN-THE-BOX.”
“Excellent idea,” proclaimed Penguin, adjusting the tiller to change their course.

“Jack-in-the-box?” queried Cat.

“Jack is an oracle,” explained Zebra. “He gives excellent advice, when you can understand him.”

“And if you don’t understand him?” asked Cat.

“Then it’s your problem for being too thick.”

Duly they arrived at Jack-in-the-box’s box.

“Go the way of the ANT,” advised Jack.

“What does that mean?” wondered Cat when they were back in the boat.

“Hmmm,” mused Penguin, who then began to sing:

“The ants go marching one by one. Hurrah! Hurrah!
The ants go marching one by one. Hurrah! Hurrah!
The ants go marching one by one,
The little one stops to suck his thumb-“

Zebra joined in with gusto.

“And they all go marching
Down!
Into the ground!
To get out of the rain!
Boom! Boom! Boom!”

“Down into the Ground!” cried Zebra and Penguin in unison. Penguin set their course for underground. As they entered the large mouth of a cave, Zebra flipped on electric torches, fore and aft, starboard and portside.

Cat stared wide eyed at the fantastic formations. Each room was more amazing than the last. The size of the stalactites! The whimsical shapes of the stalagmites! And the colors! Cat had never imagined anything like it.

They entered a smaller room, warmer, filled with EGGS. The eggs were marvels, glowing from within, jewel-like in colors, intricate patterns adorning the shells.

“What is this place?” asked Cat.

“Incubation caverns,” replied Zebra. “The eggs hatch into magical things.”
“Like dreams,” said Penguin.

“And unicorns,” added Zebra.

“And poetry.”

“And griffins.”

“Music.”

“Dragons.”

“Fairy tales.”

“Harpies.”

“Myths.”

“Basilisk.”

“Epics.”

“Dinosaurs.”

“I get the picture,” interrupted Cat, who was more interested in looking around. “What’s that?”

He pointed to a contraption that looked like a cross between a YO-YO and a XYLOPHONE. A gnome-like creature was hitting a xylophone board with a mallet while watching a blazing red disc roll up and down a cable.

“That is the Incucalcubatorlator. It senses which eggs are due to hatch. Just before peeping the eggs are shipped hither and yon…”

“To where they belong?” asked the Cat.

“Exactly!” replied Zebra.

“I’m hungry,” said Penguin. “What do say about going to the IGLOO for a bite? I could go for the HOUSE special, Apollo 11 latte.”

“I’m with you,” answered Zebra. Turning to Cat he added, “You really haven’t lived until you drink an Apollo 11 latte.”

Being the adventuresome sort, Cat was agreeable.

The Igloo lived up to its name; it was on the dark side of the moon where it is cold enough to keep the ice from melting. The hot drinks didn’t stay hot long in the Igloo.

An odd color of chartreuse KANGAROO served them their drinks. The Kangaroo had an electric blue Joey peeking from her pouch, giggling. He had never seen a grey cat before.

Cat took a swallow of the latte and began to gasp and wheeze. Zebra pounded him on the back while Penguin grinned.

“Too strong for you, Cat?”

“What’s in that stuff?”

“Who wants to know?” Said a voice behind them.

Cat turned to look. Through watering eyes he saw what he thought, but it couldn’t be, could it? A SNOWMAN.

“Please forgive our friend,” said Penguin. “He’s from Earth. Just arrived. It’s his first meal out and he doesn’t know that it is terribly bad manners to ask what’s in your food and drink.”

“Earth, heh?”

“Earth.” Gasped Cat.

“Just arrived.” Added Zebra. “Let me introduce you. Cat, this is Crusty, owner of this fine establishment. Crusty, this is Cat, earthling.”

Crusty held out a frosty hand for Cat to shake. Cat reluctantly shook, finding his paw quite frozen when Crusty let go.

“Here,” said Crusty, thawing toward the shivering animal. “I got something that’ll help. Got it from Neil Armstrong.”

Crusty left the room and returned with a large, multi-colored LOLLIPOP. Although he did not have much of a sweet tooth, Cat licked at it gratefully. He did begin to feel better.

“Thank you, Crusty.”

“Don’t mention it.”

Penguin settled their tab and the trio hopped back into the Moonbeam.

“Where to now?” asked Penguin.
“Fishing!” shouted Zebra. Cat was not quite as enthusiastic, but Penguin loved to fish so fishing it was. There were only two poles, so Cat was in charge of the NET.

Cat did not know what to expect. They caught a VIOLIN, a GOAT, a WATERMELON and an UMBRELLA. Zebra and Penguin did not seem to think this was unusual. The Goat was crotchety and none too pleased about being caught. Penguin put him off at the closest promontory and gave him the watermelon and umbrella to mollify him.

Zebra kept the Violin and began to play. He was not a virtuoso, but he was good. Cat and Penguin lay back in the boat letting it drift where it would, while Zebra played melody after melody.

The Moonbeam bumped gently into a rock formation, returning their awareness to the here and now. Penguin recognized the formation. “This is Julius Caesar Crater. If we climb over we will be in the land of RAINBOW TREES.

Rainbow Trees sounded exotic to Cat, who followed Penguin’s waddling lead up and down into the crater. It was filled with slim, tree, rather like birch, but where on earth the tree would have leaves, here it bore bubbles. The bubbles shimmered iridescent with rainbow colors.

Beneath the Rainbow Trees, FROGS hopped purposefully, taking bubbles into their mouths and then jumping high into the air, out of the moon’s orbit to –

“What are the frogs doing?” asked Cat.

“The frogs are servants of Hekat, a goddess of your planet, who is Queen of Midwives. The Frogs bring mature Rainbows to her, and she displays them wherever.”

“Oh,” answered Cat, who knew nothing about the Egyptians save they used to worship him.

A shocking pink puppy came running through the woods to them. “I am so glad I found you,” he panted. “The DOG QUEEN, Canina, heard about the earthling and would love to have him for tea. It is so seldom we have visitors here, you know.”

Cat, Zebra and Penguin followed the puppy, a page to the Royal Canina, and had a lovely tea with the Queen. They discussed peaceable relations between earth cats and moon dogs until it was time for Cat to return to Terra Firma. Cat was heart-broken to have to leave, but rocket shuttles to the moon have strict schedules, and besides his oxygen pod was running low.

“Until we meet again!” called out Zebra and Penguin in farewell, thrilled because had it not been for their chance meeting of Cat, they would never have had audience with the queen.

Cat was overwhelmed with the hospitality and wonders he experienced. Upon returning home he tried to set up an Moon Travel Agency, but it never got off the ground.

Reflections

Zola, lying completely still
On the salt water of The Dead Sea
Thinking of 'L'Assamoir' wondered fleetingly
If the gods of Eastern nations in their infinite wisdom
Would toss him some ideas or would he, in desperation
Write a letter home to mother
Who would only implore him to end his search
For mystical Nirvana and tell him of a buxom
Lyons milkmaid just waiting to produce a house
Packed to the rafters with Zola children
In a boudoir decorated Louis X1V and late rococo
As preference to carefree romping in the straw.


No lapping wave in Eastern waters;
Salt taste on his lips, his mind's eye
Conjures up last April's meeting with
Doctor Freud - he is taking the leaden
Waters of the sea to bring him peace and lead him
Into forest paths of strange lucidity:
A passing camel blinking one soul eye
Reflects intelligently that all the prodigies
Of Europe come here to rest aching bones and hearts.
The camel carries his own water and lost
His mother at birth.
Vesuvius meanwhile erupts again
Onto unwitting bronzed Italians planting grapes
And tending olive groves.
Zola is completely unaware and in his solitary floating,
Drifting, wouldn't really care
If the whole of Italy were devastated by
Temperamental volcanoes,
He concludes, and rightly so, that he's an egotist
And goes to sleep dreaming of diamond encrusted starfish.


Jan

Friday, August 11, 2006

Alphabet Stories

My summer employment is to work in an hourly child care center. Low pay, long hours and really bratty kids. Well, some are darlings, but for the most part there are little terrors who delight in trashing the place. So the staff continuously are picking up after them.

I chose this job because I can bring my daughter, and it is important to me to be close to her. It also has the perk of allowing me to drop her off an hour or so before my shift, go to the coffee shop and write.

While picking up after juvenile cyclones, my mind is somewhere on the Silk Road Journey/Heroine's Journey.

One game I have created for myself is to create a story using the items pictures on the alphabet carpet squares in the order I find them. The result has been fun, coherent nonsense.

This is the first of my boredom busters. The capitalized words are the items in the order they were discovered on the floor.


Alphabet Story 1

TREE looked forward to winter. For then the children made a SNOWMAN right next to her. Though it was a different creation each year, its personality never changed. Tree and Snowman were very good friends and looked forward to their annual reunion.

They spent the long winter months sharing stories. Tree maintained an extensive inter-root connection with her world wide relatives. Snow man boasted of the collective consciousness of the water cycle. Both were learned in their own ways.

Snowman rambled on about the Inuit and the IGLOO they make. “Made out of blocks of snow! I wonder if that would be practical for me?” After thoughtful discussion Tree and Snowman agreed it would not be practical – too confining and rather unnecessary as Snowman did not feel the effects of weather, though he might last a bit longer, as the igloo would melt before he did. But they agreed the isolation was not worth a few more days of time, especially as Snowman would be reincarnated again next winter as usual.

Tree was excited to tell about the ZEBRA his relative the Circus Tent Pole saw dancing a cha-cha accompanied by a XYLOPHONE and VIOLIN played by cats. Snowman did not think it was possible and argued with Tree about it. Until Tree took offence, Snowman’s disbelief implied doubt on the veracity of her relation.

As they did every year, Tree and Snowman peered through the windows of the HOUSE. They had never really came to a satisfying conclusion about the decorated evergreen the family brought in at midwinter and decorated so outlandishly. It’s not like they could ask the evergreen, for, as Tree told Snowman in a horrified whisper, “They never come out alive.”

Most nights they listened to the star songs, which both agreed were very much like the FROG music in spring, but in a higher, minor key. Both also experienced and agreed that DOG had appalling toileting habits.

They discoursed about the wildlife of Australia. Snowman deferred to Tree’s opinions here, he wasn’t as familiar with desert creatures, water cycle consciousness being a little weak in those areas. They agreed on the plurals of dingoes, KANGAROOS, and koalas, but argued bitterly whether platypus pluraled into platypussies or playtpi.

Snowman had learned the recipe for WATERMELON elixir, which he generously shared with Tree. Tree was less than interested, as watermelons attract ANTS. Tree was less than fond of ants. “They swarm all over me and make my bark crawl.”

“Ants are marvelously organized,” retorted Snowman, who proceeded to talk on and on about the organization of ants, to which Tree listened politely but without interest.

“Tell me about RAINBOWS,” interjected Tree, desperate to change the subject. Rainbows were one of Snowman’s favorite topics. While Snowman droned on about rainbows, Tree was following the stealthy progression of the CAT as it scooted itself up her trunk and along her main branch toward an empty NEST.

“Stupid beast,” muttered Tree.

“Did you say something, Tree?” asked Snowman, who had heard perfectly but thought Tree might be referring to him.

“Oh, the cat,” Tree shrugged a bit to indicate the feline creeping along her branch. “Dumb thing doesn’t realize those EGGS hatched and fledged long ago. Wonderful experience, sheltering a fragile nest, screening it from that carnivore with my leaves, watching the birdlings learn to fly…”

“I know. Birds are amazing. But not as amazing as the creatures of the sea.”

Snow began to expound on the wonders of the deep, an area where Tree had no expertise. Tree grew bored again, and jumped at the opportunity to change the direction of the conversation.

“Pardon me for interrupting, but isn’t the plural of OCTOPUS, octopi instead of octopuses?”

They argued the spelling question until the following full MOON. By then they agreed to disagree.

“Look at the moon!” exclaimed Tree. “Did you know the moon is a LOLLIPOP for the winds? It’s true,” continued Tree after observing Snowman’s incredulous expression. “The Celestial Mother pours it slowly until it is full. Then her children lick it until it is gone, and she does it all over again. What flavor do you think the moon is?”

“Humph,” replied Snowman, “I heard that the moon is the North Wind’s cookie. He eats it day by day, until there’s but a rim of scraps that crumble all away…”

They argued the composition of the moon for several weeks until Snowman was getting rather out of sorts. Preferring a friend to being right, Tree deferred to the cookie theory and changed the subject to another area of Snowman expertise.

“Tell me, Snow, why are PENGUINS considered birds when they swim instead of fly?”

“Feathers,” was the laconic reply. “You’ve no idea how often I am asked that question.”

“I’m sorry, Snow. I don’t mean to be a pest.”

“I don’t mind questions from you, dear Tree.”

“In that case, may I ask you, why is JACK-IN-THE-BOX? Is he happy in there?”
“That is a conundrum,” answered Snowman.

From there the conversation turned to animal husbandry, especially of GOATS, to BOATS they both knew, and how to walk the dog with a YO-YO.

“I personally think tying it around the creature’s neck is the best strategy.” Snowman was definitive on that point.

By then the temperature was warming daily. Snowman was shrinking more and more every passing moment. He had saved his juiciest morsel of gossip for last. “Tree, do you know what I saw during the summer?”

“I’m sure I couldn’t guess,” answered tree who correctly guessed her friend didn’t have time for guessing games.

“I saw the QUEEN,” confided Snowman. “She was wearing dungarees and chasing butterflies with a NET and an UMBRELLA! What is the world coming to?”

“To its senses,” muttered Tree.

Snowman was melting fast. They would have to argue about the suitability of the Queen chasing butterflies with a net and umbrella next winter.

“Good-bye, dear Snow!” Cried Tree.

“Farewell, dear Tree!” Croaked Snowman. With that Snowman was gone, and Tree was left alone.

Thursday, August 10, 2006

Depression

It is with me always;
It is the granite rock lodged within,
I have tried to assail it with pleas and tears
But it does not budge;
It is heavy and makes me crooked and twisted.

You will see it even should I smile,
Or forget for a second it is there;
You will feel its immensity and wonder,
How it came to be so monstrous and complete.

I devise plots and strategies to chip away
The cruelest, jagged edges; they never work;
Words and drugs and whisky soak inside:
It will not melt or relent.

I am crippled by its weight;
It casts shadows that I jump to see;
It is grey and does not flinch -
It will not leave me - it loathes me.

I cannot give the rock away,
Or leave it, or put it to one side;
It will not be ignored and cannot be smashed:
It is in my eyes;
You see it raging when my face is white.


Jan

An Exchange

Almost a year since Em and I were wed and we found ourselves caught in 'routine'. I went to bed at nine from exhaustion over building a new bathroom in the basment, and Em much later, frustrated a bit from her latch-hook rug (difficult for a blink). She woke me to get a 'nightime kiss' (nothing more) to which I apparently did not respond well.

The next day I sent her a poem, and received a reply ...

He mused --

In human draw and folly,
our perceptions of energy is measured (judged?)
by the discordance in our live,
of light where darkness is natural,
or sound where silence is a gift.

Can this be true of Currents?
even love?
Where we forget to embrace
the hidden flow –
and focus instead on actions
like kisses, hugs and trivial gifts?

Or is attention to these things
(to be nurtured and close held),
a part of humanity’s balance
and essential to sought spirit dance,
and I but confuse the two?

Her Response –

no gift is trivial
when gifted to and received from a love
a slip of paper with written thought,
a feather found in the so called weeds,
a beautiful leaf of vibrance,
a bit of dustkitty fluff from under the bed----

it is the hand outstretched
that is the truest gift
the heart extended
the mind embraced
the touch of love in all things
the mended hem
the leak fixed
the broken hinge replaced

it is in all things you do
and all things you are
and lo I know this
but my frail female self
loves your kiss and your touch
and loves to do so to you

and perhaps i ask too much of thee
in this way

i will revel in whatever is
and enjoy the mist
of your energy blest
within my Soul and Spirit
forever.....

Monday, August 07, 2006

School Days

The child at desk 'one', head deep
In italic script, will not leave the classroom
Even for playtime - this is her salvation;
All of eight years old, plotting escape routes,
She does not bite her nails or show obvious distress:
She will coal-pick under hedgerows
Tonight at twilight when the neighbours cannot see,
There is no money for a fire and no T.V

Pouring over harder and more complex mathematics
Same child, striving for top position knows
This is where they make or break your chance
Of freedom - in her mind's eye she sees
The glory of grammar school tie and satchel.
Three years yet to wait the test,
Prepare for entry to a foreign culture;
Returning to school at dinner time she says
In passing to a skipping chum,
'My mother left this morning;
I don't know where, I don't know where
She's gone."

Results one August through the letter box,
Your daughter/son has been selected;
'And what will you do now?' says dad,
'What will you do now given this education?'
First and only one in the family to pass,
She wears the dark blue blazer with such pride,
Her heart is fit to burst; she has her course mapped,
Even now, on University - career planned
Aged eleven.

The Hoover broke down later in the day;
She spent three hours cleaning mats by hand -
Just missed the library - she has no books,
Other than 'Alice in Wonderland' given as a present
Once,
For her ninth birthday party.

She is staring at a white emulsioned wall
One morning of March as winter
Turns to spring. A young man of twenty five or so
Is hanging his arms in a bucket of hot water;
The people here with strange, distorted faces
Do not see through dull and drug glazed eyes
The frightened child shivering in a corner;
Nurse is nice and says it will not hurt,
Just a small pain in her head and temporary
Loss of memory.

On waking after 'treatment', half a million brain cells
Murdered at a stroke,
She is slightly sick and does not now remember
No T.V, no Hoover, lack of coal;
But neither does she see the varnished desks,
Or grassy dell where sixth form learn their French.
Just in her teens with past and future gone,
When her head clears tonight at dusk,
She will, if left alone, reflect
In half dazed torment,
How the planning all went wrong.

Jan

Prompted by Flow

Related to the current theme, perhaps,
this piece was also prompted by a news story --

It was written for students at a 'wizard school'
as part of a series on defining wizardry,
as opposed to the Hollywood corruptions.


WIZARD WISH

It could have been at Solstice -- or Beltane -- or. The season has no reason when it comes to terror, so I will not relate the time or place.

" Who you are transcends
that and all --
and it must be so --
as one be wizard!"

So listen close, my children -- this is a test -- a knowing beyond believing:

The crowd was small, but large enough for his purpose. The old stone walls protected from the ranging storm, but also trapped those within. The thin, iron bound windows let in little light -- but enough for them all to see. His drooping raincoat fell open and away. No! Strapped to the scrawny man's chests were rows on rows of dun colored sticks -- wires trailing to a box above his heart -- a single coax cable extending to a button in his hand -- duct-tape. No one there had ever seen such a rigging before -- but all knew, and understood. The Angel of Death breathed on each neck -- silence. Then a baby cried.
"No children! There were to be no children here!" The voice was reedy -- shrill -- but carried no hint of panic. Despair? Resignation?

"All right then -- you have a chance. Spare this child -- though none of you deserve it!" The dread hand lowered a bit as the looming figure spun about -- eyes probing each victim's soul. "I will let fate decide -- or whatever God you now pray to. One of you will come forth and stand for all. This person will flip a coin. If it comes up 'heads' I will leave and meet whatever destiny awaits outside -- the child will be free -- and all of you as well. If you do not win this challenge I will count to five -- an eternity perhaps -- for you all to gather and nurture you spirits"

Silence -- each person looking furtively about -- hoping -- seeking.

"Choose! Have you no champion? Choose, or I shall start counting anyway!" One person walked forward -- alone.


Now, my students, consider your choices.

A) You have the courage and presence to step forth, or to stand silently by and pray that another will shoulder this burden. Perhaps it is a ruse, or the bomb will fail, or…

B) You do step forth, let us say. Is it because:

1) You believe your powers are such that you can control the coin?
2) You know that your faith is such that the coin will be biased in some way?
3) You just want this ordeal over?
4) You don't know why -- are just called to do it?

C) For whatever reason, you are there-- coin in hand. What are the options?

1) You win, and the maniac leaves as he says. How will this affect your life?
Are you strong enough to bear this burden for the rest of your life?

2) You lose, but are saved anyway -- intervention or failure of his resolve -- whatever.
Are you strong enough to bear this burden for the rest of your life?

3) You lose. You all die! In whatever manifestation you imagine …
Are you strong enough to bear this burden for the rest of your life?

4) You win! But you all die anyway -- there never was a chance -- or you didn't create one by your will.
Are you strong enough to bear this burden for the rest of your life?


Success or failure here can be measured in many ways -- and perhaps some untold here. The real question is -- are you a wizard?

For a wizard would not hesitate -- would act …

For the measure of 'who you are' will already have been asked and considered.
"To be willing" is a matter of accountability -- balance -- a sense of being.

Who are you -- right now??

Sunday, August 06, 2006

Untitled

38 minutes ago
This early Tuesday morning
In Somewhere, USA.
A 6-year-old girl,
who had escaped a house fire,
ran back inside to find her mother,
not realizing
her Mama had jumped to safety
from a second-floor window,
the police say.
The child, Da-Onah Childers,
never made it back out alive.
Firefighters found her little body
under a bed on the second floor.
Was it her mama’s bed?
The firefighters didn’t know.
Da-Onah and an older cousin, Nesha Boyles
had been asleep on the first floor
after watching scary movies, sharing secrets, eating sweet potato pie.
They awoke to flames about 12:30 a.m.
They ran from the house, said Steelton Police Chief.
Nesha lost her grip on Da-Onah.
She didn't realize the child, her cousin, her friend, her playmate, secret keeper
had run back inside
until it was too late.
A neighbor summoned help.
But the heat and flames were too intense
for police or firefighters to get inside.
The home was destroyed.
Da-Onah's mother, Myiaa Simon, 26, survives,
But wishes
She had died
Instead of her Da-Onah.
Cousin Nesha, grandparents, other cousins, friends
survive too
There are no siblings,
Da-Onah is an only child.
The town has about 5,700 residents.
Now there is one less,
Until another baby is born or
Someone moves in,
But there will never be another
Da-Onah
"This little kid played in the neighborhood.
We waved at her," said the Mayor.
"Everybody knew her.
It's a tragedy."

Saturday, August 05, 2006

Woman With Child

A woman appeared one Sunday for morning service;
She had her child with her.
The child was bemused and afraid;
The woman was withdrawn and ignored the child.

They came then every Sunday for months
And sat alone - and together;
The woman stared at her companion but did not speak;
The child could not sing and thought she had offended God.

Gradually, through the summer months, the woman said hello
And was on friendlier terms towards her fellows;
But the child did not know if she should be blessed;
And the woman left her - fretting.

The congregation wondered about the woman
And the child;
They wondered why the child should sob so
And offered her sweets and kisses.


'Why are you doing this for my child?'
Asked the woman. Do not give her your sweets and kisses,
Do not give her your hugs and embraces;
She sobs for mischief and is best alone.'

'Why do you not comfort your child?' they said;
'She needs you.
She weeps for your love but you turn her away;
She is not at fault for being as she is - hold her.'

'The child clings to me and will not let go,'
Said the woman. You must not give her your sweets
And kisses for she will want them all the more;
She cries at nothing and wakes me in the night.'

And thus it went on;
And the woman who had begun to talk
And give of herself, drew back;
Crept off with her child and hurried away:
Desolate.


Jan

More Bugs!

I made two more new bugs the following day. I was able to post this just now.


Princess Antela is my favorite. I think I won't put her up for adoption.

This is Prinsipe Talahib (Prince Reed). He's a blue praying mantis, sort of. All these are of course high breeds and are only loosely based on the real thing. The beads dictate what form the bugs will turn out to be.



Prinsipe Talahib (Prince Reed)

This is the Blue Ant. I made it with wings and took a picture of it and then later decided to take out the wings. Here's a picture of both versions, the final of which is the one without wings.


This batch has either japanese crystal bead (Princess Antela & White Ant) or a fresh water pearl (Mookie G, Prince Reed, & bantfly) for a head.

I've ran out of the oval bead I use for the thighs of these bugs so I've stopped making them today. I'll make some more when I get new supplies. They're fun to make and very fulfilling to look at. Everytime I make them I end up feeling like I want to keep them all to myself but I'm willing to let them go when people ask to adopt them. LOL!

Friday, August 04, 2006

Stabilising Women - Soul Food Hermitage Store


Heroine's Journey
Stable Women
Ferry Women
Supportive Talismans
Art by Heather Blakey
(copyright 2006.)

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Six

They are screaming.
The child sits rigid, hopeless on the stairs -
They do not see;
There is no one.
The house is cold and the wind moans -
Rain beats at the open window where the primrose curtains flap,
But no one knows or cares or comes
To comfort;
So there.

She is a pawn played in some murderous adult game
Of make believe -
Let's all pretend the storm will pass
If someone makes the final move and leaves:
Queen to Bishop four slams shut the door -
Checkmate;
Mummy's gone.

The child sits on.

Stares blindly at the broken doll
With fixed glazed eyes;
Twists wretched fingers into ragged knots,
Repeats inside,
What have I done?
It must be me
It must be me.
Cries into the void,
"I am all wrong."


Jan

Wednesday, August 02, 2006

I left the Abbey to see what people post on the 'journey':- I wanted to see if I could write in a completely different style so this is my first attempt.



Spiralling upwards, tremendous crescendo
A torrent of raven-haired fury and beauty
Black lashed eyes flashing sapphires
Silver skin shining starwards;
With consummate ease, head held high
Starts her journey
Every stride spanning oceans
She is searching the heavens
For foundlings; undeterred, never wavering,
Angelwoman embracing the Earth she will
Gather all souls who call out to be saved;
Scythe her way forward in glorious splendour
She has space and a place for all of her children,
Spirit chambers so deep and so wide, glowing,
Lined with such power and protection,
If need be
She will clasp and keep safe
Every flickering heartbeat-
Incomparable,
Warrior goddess of love.


Jan

Somewhere

I have a need to post this somewhere,
might as well be here in the quiet shadows.
................................................................

TERROR

Terror, terror on the wall,
what's the closest of them all --
atrocities done unto man,
or that no one seems to care?

See the stranger -- kill him, kill her;
Uncle Pat says its Christian --
Papa George will tell you who
lacketh faith and deserves to die.

Terror, terror burning bright
in the forest of the night --
'cause my power bill's outa sight,
while good ol' boys stack diamonds high.

Average, average -- do not try,
shun education and self-worth --
cramp the bell curve down to nothing,
preach only bigotry and selfish pride.

Food chain -- food chain, join in dance;
let them starve who dare to dream
of simple justice, blind and free --
as long as I am not one right now.

Whisper, whisper to your child,
suckled by a virtual tit --
forced to squalor by 'right to live',
becoming fodder for their greed.

Terror, terror -- 'tis my right,
'cause my neighbors say 'tis so --
get yours now and rape the earth;
but leave me alone to die in shame.