Thursday, October 30, 2014

Pic and a Poem #14

           we are here,
           great torchbearers
           of this lifetime
           born into the light
           of our inheritance,
           from a long line
           of sacred blood and spirit
           we carry that flame
           kindled in our hearts
           the fires of
           all the love,
           all the pain,
           the infinite
           joys and struggles
           what was done and
           what was left undone
           in the dark unknown
           of what might come
           raise your lantern,
           release all fear,
           guided by grace and angels
           step into what calls you, 
           the many behind you
           will not let you fall

    Today is Halloween and I already confronted fear as I showed up to write this. What I wrote yesterday was so well received that it caused me hesitation in writing today. In my mind I thought "What if that is the best? What if nothing more comes?". I drew myself back to my original intention, that this is a creative experiment, and I am simply trying to be an open channel and trusting that what emerges is what was needed on that day, in that moment, even if it is for myself alone.

As I relaxed into that it occurred to me that today is Halloween, the day where the veil between this world and the spirit world is thin, and this image popped into my head. I went and found the photo and the words came from there. These words are the very reminder I needed, to have faith in my journey and that everything is arriving on time, through a guidance beyond me and behind me. I am not alone.

I wish I had my own family tree of photographs to use here, but living in China, this idea of honoring ones ancestors is a prominent part of the culture, and this was part of a display at a museum of local architecture. The picture isn't perfect but it is what presented itself. Just like my poem suggests, I let go of fear and stepped into what called me. Creating by faith, trusting the flow.

Take some time on this Halloween to remember your ancestors, both those known and those unknown, in the end we are all one family, in it together. 

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

Pic and Poem #13


       make a pilgrimage,
       one that will truly
       change you

       not the one to the
       pretty place,
       the temple that has
       been well tended
       go past that one
       out into the wilds
       far beyond

       all the way to the
       lonely edge
       of shadow and decay,
       to the temple that echos
       of heartbreak and tears
       kneel there amidst
       the dirt and debris,
       sit beside despair,
       hold her in your arms
       like a mother holds
       her child

       utter the prayers
       that have waited,
       once forgotten,
       and in the holy
       emptiness be heard

I have shared before on my blog about my life long struggle with depression and anxiety. Today is gloomy and rainy here in Shanghai, and I woke today in a bit of a depressive mood, and it is alright. I have learned how to be with these waves that come through me, how to sit in visitation, knowing that they pass. Some days that comes easier than others, but I know I have grown most in my life by being willing to go there. I can not heal what I am not willing to be with. I know when I make the pilgrmage into these dark places with the light of faith and practice to guide me, the prayers I give to the emptiness are heard. That does not mean there is no more struggle, it simply means I am held in the journey of what is. We all have such struggles in one form or another and this poem is my offering to that.
 This picture was taken in Delhi, India.    

Pic and a Poem #12

be generous
in uplifting others,
nothing extraordinary
is of necessity
meet another
truly look at them 
and smile
a thing so simple
is enough
to put the sun back
in someones sky,
or breathe joy
into a lonely heart,
invisible no longer
see each face
not with judging eyes
but with the eyes of love,
give freely these
offerings of beholding,
blissful recognition
to see each other
through those eyes is
to see ourselves
and know we are divine
this love needs no language
it has no limits or borders
it comes to gently shake us,
to wake us up from the illusion
that we could be separate from each other
we belong to each other, truly
holding hands and hearts
walking this path called life
 This picture was taken on a tour I did to a tea plantation here in China. I wish I had a picture of myself smiling at her to accompany the photo of the beautiful smile she gave to me. We could not stop to chat with each other because of the language barrier, but her smile alone touched me deeply. China gets a lot of bad press in the world and some of it is valid. I just hope that we can always remember that people everywhere around the world are the same, people living, working, caring for families, seeking fulfillment, longing for connection. Namaste.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Pic and a Poem #11

            rest here at the feet of the earth
              plant your own deep roots
                  find the will to stay
              the way is to meet stillness
           where do you have to get to anyway?
              what could be more important
            than listening to the rustle of  leaves
          or communing with a slow unfolding fern?
         the fern and the leaves know more about living
           than you can hope to discover somewhere
            out in the wide populous lonely world

             here you can live into the big space
              the one your soul longs to occupy
               the one beyond ideas and stories
             with no words like could or should

              rest here at the feet of the earth
                 plant your own deep roots
                 give yourself to the grace
              of what rises from within you
               these roots will give you wings
                              to fly

I am a nature girl, always have been. I have said many times that the things I miss most living in Shanghai are my family, my friends and the forest. I find the forest to be magical and healing. When I am in nature I feel renewed and reconnected to myself.  Even if I can't get out into pure nature, just feeling my feet on the ground helps me regain my center.

Sunday, October 26, 2014

Pic and a Poem # 10

     simplicity is
     spacious and pure,
     ruthlessly peel back
     all these layers of life,
     keep what is true
     release what is false,
     distill it down to it's
     bare essence,
     the bones of being,
     empty each moment
     to the bottom
     of it's deep well, 
     chisel experience
     down to small pebbles
     that you drop in
     marked with the question
     "who am i?"
     seek the answer
     at the center of stillness
     formless and wordless,
     the simplicity of what
     is known and not learned,
     bring it back,
     paint it on the walls of
     your life,
     wisdom comes in few words
This one came as a total stream of consciousness, and I have left it as is.
I do know that I have been contemplating simplicity a lot lately. Craving it in my life.
Would love to hear how you think about simplicity.  

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Pic and a Poem # 9

      this world is shocking
       in her capacity to be     
       limitlessly beautiful
      all her manifestations
        perfectly designed

    with breathtaking intensity
      she shows you her heart
             on her sleeve,
      holding nothing back
     letting every stroke fall to
              the canvass
   without the slightest hesitation

        even a city street
       ringing with chaos
        and painted with
       collisions of color
     is such grace to behold

       the lines and curves
       of wires and wheels
        are the geometry
       for the movement
              of life

    like blood through veins
      waves on the ocean
            her rhythm
             the pulse
      and drum beat dance
         of the universe

    anywhere you might be
   she is trying to show you
    the wonder of existence,
  the miracles large and small
   that she lays out before you

if you don't see beauty in front of you
try looking again with different sight
          and when you see it
   there will be no more denying
  the magnificence that you live in
     showing you the beauty
              that you are


Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Pic and a Poem #8

                        there is a city of light 
                           deep within you
                        the way to get there
                        is to get lost
                        lost from any identity
                        lost from all attachment
                        returning to the simple 
                        state of being and presence
                        in a moment,
                        this very moment
                        you are already there
   I will confess, this one had to struggle to get through as I am a bit off balance energetically and emotionally today. The words speak to this state. At the heart of this experiment is my quest to create by faith , to be vulnerable and to make an offering no matter what shows up. So today I got the very challenge that I asked for. For now I am off to my cushion, to consider these words, it is needed. xos for today.