May 15th, 2006

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I'm Back!!

We lost power yesterday, and then, my internet connection wasn't working, and since I knew it also wasn't working in Mountain View, I let it go until this morning, where a lovely Comcast man directed me through typing in Ping and a bunch of numbers,  a bunch of times, and unplugging and waiting and plugging, three different plugs, and now, I am back, not having even read the paper yet today.  Ack!!   What a trauma.  : )    How very spoiled I am!

I had a wonderful Mother's Day with Jeff and Jan, and am feeling pretty zippy.

Radiation is at 10:15, and then, I see the dermatologist at 11:10, so I am hoping things are on-time today.  I usually don't schedule things so closely together, but, thought I would try it today.

Ah, it is lovely to be back!!
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My poems of this morning -

The Meeting


awe -
the starting point of consciousness
where the breath comes in
and touches the heart of our lungs
like the hummingbird beak
the place where pistil and stamen meet.

The ovary is a bulb.

Squeeze and release
the organ meat.
Tone and bellow,
I’m here and I’m not.  

Squeal the particle
until it waves.
Heed the pony tail
and pig tails
as endings
that straighten,
curl, and braid.      



The States of Matter

what now brown cow
what now
plain brown
or splattered with spots
like pancake bubbles
waiting to be flipped -
what goes on as the grass
is browsed,
and converted
to gas,
and still, with all that,
the cow
gives milk
and putters thought like paddies
puddled in mass. 


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Jane's Poem of Today!!

My mother taught me to fold men¹s shirts in half lengthwise down the middle, matching shoulder seams and sleeves, then doubling the shirt twice more into a tidy rectangle. But the last time, folding my father¹s just-dried shirts, unsure why we had washed them in the first place, I folded them in half widthwise, the sleeves crucified, so I could press my palms across his chest again.
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Balance -

I read this quote and think of the horses.  When we lead them, we walk where we would sit, from the middle of the horse.  Too far ahead, or behind, and they stop and turn around.  We stay amidship.

"Don't walk in front of me, I may not follow. Don't walk behind me, I may not lead. Just walk beside me and be my friend."

- Albert Camus

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It had to happen -

I went to the dermatologist and received good news.  He said that what is on my head is not a problem and he froze it off.  He then looked at a clear spot that appeared in the last two days, and cut it off.  He didn't feel it would be a problem though.  His nurse enthused over me, and loved the softness of my hair, and said I was the picture of health, so how do I feel right now?   Like the picture of health, and I am.   Yay!!!

Two more radiations to go.  Yay!! 

When I took my shower this morning, I noticed the water hitting that underarm part was pretty painful.  I asked about that, and they said it will get worst, so I don't now how clean I am going to be on the left side for the next few days, but I will try.

I also realized today that because I drive a stick I am more aware of the stop and go than a person with an automatic might be.  I like driving a stick, and the constant shifting, can, at times, feel old. 

When I was waiting in the doctor's office, I saw the fog drifting across in elongated clumps like dinosaurs.   Now, the fog is completely in and I am enclosed in cold and wind.  Mandu is happily snuggled, and we are both very happy campers.  I hope your day is as good as mine.
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Pink bats -

My brother and Katy attended the Yankees baseball game in NY on Saturday.  For Mother's Day and breast cancer awareness, the players wore pink wrist bands, pink ribbons, and some of the players used pink bats.  When my brother emailed this to me, I thought it must be a typo, pink hats, but no, it is pink bats.  The players autograph them and they are auctioned off, but as my brother says, what would Babe Ruth think?  It is pretty funny, and a good cause, but I truly never did think to see a pink bat, though I haven't yet seen it, only heard about it.  We live in quite a world.  Enjoy!
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other news -

My dermatologist's son has cancer and has a three year regimen of chemotherapy.   He is one and half years  through, and they are feeling confident now he will make it, but it is hard to imagine what he, the child, and his parents have been through.  Tears filled my eyes when he told me, and they fill my eyes now.  I cannot imagine anything worst than watching your child suffer,  and  not knowing if he will  live or die.  Prayers and good thoughts I request today for Dr. Laub's son, who, I am sure will be very well, and yet, he still has another year and a half of chemo.  I find that unimaginable, and, as Dr. Laub says, what else can you do.  That is how you make it through.  You have no choice, and so, we do.  Anyway, prayers are in order, I see now, for the whole Laub family.  Thank you!
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May Sarton -

Candice, on her birthday, sends this from May Sarton.   Happy birthday to Candice today!!!   Yay!!

May Sarton:

"Even a year's not long, yet moments are.
This moment, yours and mine, and always given,
When the leaf falls, the ripple opens far,
And we go where all animals and children are,
The world is open. Love can breathe again."

May it continue so. 
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Solitude fueled connection -

I read these words of Anne Morrow Lindbergh:

"Only when one is connected to one's own core is one connected to others... And, for me, the core, the inner spring, can best be refound through solitude."

I have had a great deal of solitude through these last nine months, and also, a deeper level of connection.  I think the two go together, so embrace your own solitude today, and, in that, feels all the connections refresh and reverberate.   As William Blake says, "Energy is eternal delight," and as we know, we are constantly bathing in a matter-energy exchange.   Delight!
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In the heart is a place filled with joy.This joy doesn't depend on anything.SwamiMuktananda

Perhaps I better understand this now.  Today, as I worked on the new duck puzzle, there was a man waiting, also, in the radiation waiting room.  The nurse informed him his treatment would consist of radiation and no chemo.  He was concerned that without chemo  he would not be healed.  She said, very kindly that they had determined chemo would be too hard on him.   I sit with that today, such a full day of relief for me, and care and concern for others who are suffering.  I think it is to continue to feel, massage and stimulate that place of joy that doesn't depend on anything but living fully in the joyful wholeness of me, and you.

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Poem -

Yesterday Jeff and I walked along the marsh and saw a Black-crowned Night Heron.  What a treat!   We stood right next to him, as his feet fit like silk against the grain of a rock by the bridge where the tide moves in and out.

Today, while waiting for the doctor I was looking out on patches of fog blowing in, and egrets and terns and ducks playing with the fog.

This is my poem about that.

summer in San Francisco


the fog blows in

like dinosaurs in a parade

across the sky

the birds reach up

grab twigs of moisture

for their nest

held within

like a furnace

for the gods

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Healing -

I am reading a wonderful book, "Horse Sense for the Leader Within," by Ariana Strozzi.

I am going to offer a passage from the book because I believe it shows the power of how we treat another, and what it does for that person.

Ariana is talking about social systems, and how she thinks we respond so much to horses because we, like them, need a social system.  We need to belong.  We need a herd. 

Here is the story she tells:

    Francine was a homeless woman who visited my friend's church to receive free meals and a place to sleep on cold nights.  Most people walked by this woman on the street as she talked to herself, the cracks in her path or the bushes in the park, but when she visited the church, she was greeted with a hug and a warm smile. She would bring him photographs of the sidewalk and tell him long stories about what the lines in the pavement meant.  My friend understood her need to connect with another person and to share her stories.  He decided to give Francine a home and the task of preparing the dining hall for dinner.  Over time, she took to her new responsibility with a quiet smile and dutiful hands.

    At each meal, she greeted the visitors with the same kind heart with which the pastor greeted her. As she began to feel good about herself, she made new friends. Her dependability was quickly recognized by a local restaurant. They took her in, gave her a bed in the back room and a job cleaning the restaurant.

    Francine still visited church regularly because it was a family to her.  One day, when the pastor greeter her, Francine pulled him aside. She thanked him for taking her in and she told him that she was happy now. She no longer heard voices and felt that she belonged to people she could take care of.
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Gifts -

I am asked how it feels to have only two more days.  It has been almost eight months as I look back to the beginning of this in September. 
I have been trying not to get too excited, but now, tonight, I am feeling the prison gate open and I feel like I am entering a magic garden.
I am stepping carefully there.  I feel like a ballerina with long, delicate toes, feeling my way.

I read these words from a card Jeff gave me for my birthday.

    Each day comes
    bearing its own gifts.
    Untie the ribbons.

          Ruth Ann Schabaker

May we each untie the ribbons and wave them freely about.  I feel warm and full, excited and calm.  I feel myself walking through a threshold into a world more beautiful than I have ever known before.  

May this be so for us all, each day, a new threshold and a garden beyond and fulfilling all our dreams.