December 16th, 2005

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I woke with some fear about the upcoming chemo, then, again spoke to myself about how silly it is to fret over something so far in the future. All is fine in this moment, and I honor that the body knows the chemo place as a scary place, a poisonous red berry. Don't do that again, it says.   Let's go to the beach instead.    

Here is my morning poem through the fear to the juiciness of my insides.  

Juicy, the Sacred Within   

this morning
a lavender sheet
of fog
walks toward me,
like a  blanket,
wanting to warm
my fear -
I enter
as it comes around
to embrace my back,
a hand,
the heart, of a hand,
the land,
where fear
is winter, spring,
summer, fall -

My windows are full,
stained with color,
juiciness wiggling,
like worms,
through apples,
and birds.  

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Yule Logs!!

I am going to make Yule Logs today!!

Again a request for the visualization of happy, proliferating white blood cells. 

Thank you!!

              Winter  Haiku

         Dark and cold, today,

            I move slowly, to, and with,

                    the kindling of light.   




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Yule Logs!!

To clarify, I am not making cake today, and rolling it up with whipped cream and frosting, and decorating it with mushrooms and trolls. I am not insane.  : )

No, I am going out to my wood pile and choosing the most interesting logs, and then, cutting sprigs of Holly from my bush down below, and tucking that holly into crevices in the logs, and pouring melted white wax over the log and holly to look like snow, and tying a red ribbon around the log. I even made a teeny-tiny one with fresh Rosemary from our yard. The purple flowers look so sweet. What a treat!! I love to make Yule logs!!

They look beautiful sitting on the hearth of the fireplace, waiting for their time to burn on Christmas night. Sometimes I make one for New Year's Eve. They are easy to do, and very beautiful. I got the idea years ago, and do it a week to two weeks before. You can use any plants in your garden, and, if necessary, you can tie them on with string. The logs I used today were from an old apple tree, so had plenty of crevices to tuck the plants. It works well to choose a log with a small branch sticking out, and then, you have a handle. Interesting logs are best, though any will do. It is like going to the Humane Society to choose a pet. Some logs wiggle a bit, hoping to be chosen, and others hide in the back, and are still.

Today, I am sitting with a discussion from yesterday. Rilke was a prolific letter writer and receiver of letters, and that stimulation led much of his writing our way. I think he would have loved email, and even would have had a blog. The group does not see it that way. They see the importance of applying ink to paper, and yes, I, too, love that flow of ink on paper, and I love the rapidity of typing.

Recently, someone told me of a man who misspelled words when he hand-wrote, and yet, did fine when he typed, because in using two hands to type, he used both sides of the brain, thus, for him, eliminating the problem of misspelling. Would not Rilke have loved that? Somehow, I think he would. I think he would use every available tool to answer the questions that drove and obsessed him. He wanted to understand and put to rest for himself:  spirituality, soul, religion.

Years and years ago, I was in a workshop where we meditated on our ideal place to create. I imagined myself in a pure, white, simple place with an air of Japan. I had a magic tool to write. Steve pointed out, at the time, I did have one. I had a computer, which at that time, used WordStar.

I helped teach computers in those days at the school of my sons. We were so proud to have raised the money at that school through bake sale and walk-a-thons to have a room, outfitted with computers. We discussed the ethics of using one program for all the computers, or buying one program for each. The money was critical for us at the time, and we felt the ethics were what mattered. Computer by computer, and program by program, we slowly moved along, carefully choosing each program. The children were delighted, and didn't mind that they had to move between computers, that one did nothing but haiku. They were out of one classroom, and, into another. . It was a simpler time, and so much fun!!

Enough reminiscing.

Great joy to you today, as you struggle now with the political statement of your winter greeting. 

What a contrast to Nepal where they celebrate every holiday.  They point out that it is the feasting that matters, not what religion you are.  We were trying to understand why day after day, our porters were hungover from the drinking of chang.  There were Buddhist holidays, and Hindu celebrations.  It made quite a clattering in their heads, which dissipated quickly with the prayer flags,  prayer wheels, and bells.  

In Bangkok, I saw a lovely ornament, Santa Claus tied to a cross.  For me, it said it all.  The world is truly one, and in a most glorious hodge-podge, goofy, endearing sort of way.   Of course, again, that was a long time ago, during the first Gulf War.  Who could have imagined it would happen again?

Well, I keep swerving off track.   I want to make my political statement.  

"Happy Holidays, each and every one of them, to you All!"
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more thoughts -

James Hillman said that Religion is an instinct, and certainly, it has been an important element in organizing structure from chaos. I think what is disturbing to me right now is the fundamentalism that is hijacking our right to awe, ritual, belief, myth, tolerance, and the true values which seem to me to be universal to all religions. I struggle to understand what is going on when people who espouse the Bible, which so clearly states, "Thou shalt not kill," seem to be in favor of so much killing. I am unable to understand the disconnect. For me, right now, the words of the Dalai Lama are what support me. "My religion is kindness." For me, right now, that is enough.