September 11, 2013

Dearest Christy,

I honor you for the precious teacher that you are in life. You find golden nuggets of essence and weave them between worlds.

Playing in your presence is a gift. Skipping around this lot, my heart has landed upon so many gems. I'm excited to linger and discover what's here.

I find this to be a lovely place. Quite sweet.

Thank you for nurturing the field... Perhaps I'm ready to join you and discover the tones of my voice.

Much love and gratitude.

April 4, 2013

I really love this talk (thanks to Joe Brewer for posting it!) given by Dougald Hine at Dalarna University in Sweden, on What is a University For? - about the crises (economic, ecologic, meaning) and "networked disruption" and new kinds of learning spaces that are "alive with curiosity, and not focused on acquiring certificated knowledge," all giving rise to what he calls "the invisible college" - global communities of independent scholars, thinkers, writers, artists.

As I read more about his work, I discovered that this is how we are connected:

Among many other things, Dougald Hine is also co-founder of The Dark Mountain Project, a "network of artists, writers and thinkers in search of new stories for troubled times. We promote and curate writing, art, music and culture rooted in place, time and nature." Below is the cover of their second published book.

This cover artwork is by Rima Staines, who writes and illustrates a fantastic blog called The Hermitage. Rima is the dear heart of storyteller, poet, mask maker and apprentice acupuncturist Tom Hirons/Coyopa, whom I admire very much, and whose virtual acquaintance I made through elementally magical Thomas - whom I know in person (and that's how these circles touch the ground finally, I think - with some in-person knowing!)

we turned our bodies into drums

Something about the voice of the whole big body.

"We turned our bodies into drums."

February 6, 2013

transmutation time

some mini sparks:
maybe i'll get them to bloom into flame, if i feel them some time and some quiet air

spent a bunch of minutes sharpening some of the many colored pencils that I've been collecting from around the house, from dusty corners and under the furniture. what am i sharpening them for, i am curiously wondering?

michael m mentioned having intuitively suggested a ritual smashing of pottery to his friend grieving her husband, and then did some research and found it was an indonesian funereal tradition. i in turn mentioned this art to him (having seen it pictured on connie's fb page recently), and he mused that maybe that can be a next step in the grief process...later, much later, i would guess.

this: mark morford 2013: The Year Women Abolish God
plus this: len wallick, planet waves: Your Mission: Changes of Venus and Mars "...theory was that the interval of irregularity, ending in 2060, corresponds to an era of when the relationship between women and men will be undergoing transmutation."
gives some rise to this: v-day, one billion rising:

cracks and fissures, mars and venus, gold and colors (colored drawing) (drawing together), rising, mending, culture healing, transmutation - now's the time (it's always been time) (and now is also time for me to go to work - so what is it i have been doing, then?)

January 20, 2013

generative oblique strategy

"You can get some appealing effects by just imagining the absent poet as part of the audience. This conceptual approach is what Brian Eno might call an “oblique strategy,” and it can be generative: although I think a lot about what Kees would have made of my Robinson poems, and I want to think he would have liked them, they’re not addressed to him, and, furthermore, he’s not even in them. I’m borrowing his fictional creation and reimagining his own life through that character."

from Conjuring Act in the Poetry Foundation blog

Conjuring Act

July 19, 2012

rays of life

"Our Sun comes home to Leo on Sunday, seconds after 6 am EDT. With ingress to its domain, the Sun will make simultaneous aspects to three of the smaller objects that make up its solar system: Asbolus, Eros and Dionysus. Taken together, those three objects symbolize three ways of looking at your life that are different, yet compatible. Because the Sun is our source of life, and because Leo is where the Sun rules, the day named after the Sun may be an auspicious time to reflect on how your life can be more compatible with all life."

from Len Wallick at

July 1, 2012

in search of the miraculous

From the Atlantic's review of the new book, In Search of the Miraculous or One Thing Leads to Another, by designer of icons, Milton Glaser

Although he has written considerably about the nature of design, Glaser says "in this book I've reduced what I've learned to a few hundred words. My sense is that I'm doing less 'showing off' and more 'passing things on'."
The Zen theme of one idea leading to another on a continuum of creative activity derives from Glaser's observation that "there doesn't seem to be such a thing as an unconnected event. Certainly, in my own life and work, the inevitable consequence of one thing influencing another is apparent. Of course, you only have time to realize this retrospectively."
For his exhibition, Glaser created an accordion-folded "Users Guide" to understanding examples on the wall. The book version is more akin Ways of Seeing by John Berger, a critic whom Glaser deeply respects "and who has certainly influenced my thinking." The book uses some of his favorite work as examples of what Glaser believes are the most fundamental issues of design: "intentionality and consequence."
"We're clearly at a point in human history where the idea of unrestrained competition and a 'dog eat dog' atmosphere are no longer beneficial or relevant," he says. "This shift has certainly affected my view of a designer's role in civilization and culture, and made me more concerned about the consequences of my daily activity. My two prevailing beliefs are still: Do no harm. Do good work."

June 25, 2012

prayer in practice

"That higher purpose can, surely, only be attained by a mind attuned to subtlety, and this was the overriding message for me of this short show. We are apt to forget that the great difference between a traditional craft and that which is produced by modern industrial processes is the degree of wisdom it reveals. In traditional crafts the tools never become complicated or sophisticated. For all of the wonders they help us produce, they remain basic and very simple. Our modern, sophisticated machines and computers are quite the reverse. All we do is press a button or click a mouse and, as a consequence, we do not grow.
"Only through the daily practice of a craft do we deepen our experience and gain that perception we call wisdom, a perspective gained purely through practical action and the honing of one’s skill.
"In this way craftsmanship is nothing less than prayer in practice. As we work on the outward material, so we work also on the quality of our heart. The external tools are simple; the sophistication lies within."

- Ian Skelly Resurgence magazine Emerging Networks issue

June 17, 2012

themes for the week

Reading "Turning Pro: Tap Your Inner Power and Create Your Life's Work," a tiny book with a long title by Steven Pressfield. A passage I circled:
"The Gnostics believed that exile was the essential condition of man. Do you agree? I do.

"The artist and the addict both wrestle with this experience of exile. They share an acute, even excruciating sensitivity to the state of separation and isolation, and both actively seek a way to overcome it, to transcend it, or at least to make the pain go away." 
 Bringing to mind Rabbi Rami Shapiro's workshop a few weeks ago on recovery as a path of liberation, on addiction as all the many things and behaviors we give our power away to thinking we'll be able to control reality (and the pain of being human that Pressfield points to) through them. Addiction as a form of idolatry - worshiping something other than the truth.

Also recently read through (need to re-read) "Journey to the Common Good" by Walter Brueggemann, which uses the Exodus story to talk about patriarchy/empire and freedom/wilderness, and the injunction of freedom, which is the covenant of neighborliness (the 10 Words given at Sinai).

 Addiction and art, and exile. 
Liberation and recovery and leaving the narrow places for the wilderness. 
And exile.

June 3, 2012

incarnation and wholeness

Gematria for Nachash (nun chet shin) = 50 + 8 + 300 = 358
Gematria for Meshiach (mem shin yod chet) = 40 + 300 + 10 + 8 = 358

Nachash is Serpent
Meshiach is Messiah

"Nachash is the guide that tempts us to incarnate. Meshiach is the teacher that leads us to wholeness. Two sides of the same door.

"All experience of pain comes from separation. All experience of joy comes from (re)union. In order to have the chance to re-member (-->joy) we need to choose to first forget." - Rabbi Ted

(going through my notebooks for the past more-than-ten years - this is from 2002)
 cross-posting to life cultivating life