May 30th, 2006

Book Cover

Good Morning!!

I am reading a book by Claude M. Bristol, written in 1948, and called The Magic of Believing.  What he wanted in his life was money so he doodled dollar signs at every opportunity.   Perhaps, I have never been that desperate, but I can't find myself with his suggestion of doodling dollar signs.  I doodle daisies.  In the past, I doodled five petaled daisies, but, since this happened my daisies have gained an extra petal or two, and have six or seven petals.  I wonder if the petals represent the achievements of my life, or, perhaps they are the decades.  What I do feel is how deeply I grow and create from within.  I wake feeling myself internally this morning, my throat like the throat of a flower, a bird the sky, a throat created to blossom, sing, and expand.  I  bounce objects across it, like the sky, the moon and the stars.  
Book Cover

"A Very Easy Death"

This weekend, I read Simone de Beauvoir's book A Very East Death.  It is about the death of her mother, which was considered easy by medical standards, but, perhaps, not easy by her mother or her family.  I think it is an important book to read as we all will probably face the challenge of how much to do to save the life of another, and ourselves.  It is a complex issue, as medical capabilities become more advanced, and Simone's mother died in 1963.

It is odd to consider death today, as I look out on the blue sky of summer and gentle, green hills, and yet, I think the passage is always with us, and the acknowledgement enriches the days.  

My plan today is to begin.   Today truly feels like the first day of my new life.  I feel summer starts the day after Memorial Day, and not on June 21st, so I am ready to begin the next stage of my life, which is only a continuation of what has been and what comes, but my intention is strong today, my desire. 
Book Cover

My mind is back!

Jane and I set intention today to complete our collaboration by Labor Day.  This is the summer, the time to bloom our experience.  I want our sharings on the blog to be complete by then, so, I can start September in renewal.  I sit with who I am.   I have stood out.  Now, I blend back in.  My intention is to complete. 

The years come round.  So, too, I see it is important for me to honor the circles I draw, the daisies, with their petals, meeting in the middle and flinging out, always to return.  Complete.


          Intention to Complete


          live in the shift of knowing what is begun will complete

          when desire hovers

          like a mother and father bird

          feeding and protecting the nest,  eggs, and hungry mouths,

          and when it is time,

          time to teach,

          flight will beat

          the wings

          of  release,

          and the sky will catch and chew the toss

          that ripples

          the blue

            of its sea.





I used to think life was about more,

more cakes, pies, and cookies -

eat and feast -

but now, I think a cookie could feed a nation -

I understand the loaves and fishes of Jesus -

I always thought he made more -

now, I understand -

what was there, was more than enough. 


        the people were fed inside - 


In talking to Jane, I realize something key.  My mind is coming back, and I’m starting to think, and, in that, I am not always present.  The judge is back.  In chemo, I was in survival mode, which, was, at times, a lovely floaty place, but now, I have extra energy, and that extra energy can come in positively or negatively.  I am planning to use it positively to apply discernment to what I have been blathering out, (blathering out?  Is that kind?  I mean to say to apply discernment to what I have been graciously offering) for seven months, and I hope I can be in discernment, and not judgment.  I believe I am beginning to feel the difference between the two. 

Jane and I speak of the goal of meditation, that place of no-mind, and yet, don’t we fear that place sometimes?   No mind?  What does that mean?

But that is the place to work with the horses.  Intention is there, yes, but mind, the trying place of mind is not.

I am going to share a story from the cancer therapy circle.  I do not think Robert will mind.  He came early and saddled a horse one day.  He was so thrilled that he thought all week about doing it again the following Friday.  He came early the next week, enthused to saddle the horse, but the horse immediately backed away.  Who was this man?  This was not the same man as last week.  This man was trying to do it right, to do it perfectly.  He was in his head, his mind, and not in his body, and the horse was having none of it.   He backed away. 

Ah!  This is not easy stuff, and it is.  I start my day with that, with intention for ease, that place that seemed easy, at times, in chemo.  No mind.  Hmmm!   Can I ride that sled today?   There is no snow, so I'll  ride the  rays of the sun, and the blades of grass reaching easily to hold it, just as is needed in this moment of humidity tweaking the light. 

Book Cover

Jane's poem of this morning.

Jane and I had a good talk this morning on "being special."   When I was in the medical world, I was "special."  Now, I am just one of you.  : )

Here is Jane's beautifully, sweet poem on being special.

Hope is the flower girl.

She has a yellow dress, orange socks, and red hair.

She is softly singing about rainbows and sunshine.

Her tiny arms are curved in balletic arcs.

Her toes inside her rounded canvas shoes are pointed, just so.

She wishes the bride whose shower this is

A happy wedding marriage.

Then she curtsies,

Pulls up her dress and adjusts her panties.

Book Cover

Seamus Heaney on Poetry -


Verse as Physical Phenomenon
Seamus Heaney
from an interview with Steven Ratiner

I would have to say this: verse is a physical phenomenon.
The sound of poetry seems to be preeminent. I mean, if it
doesn’t have a melody or a rhythm or a meter--some kind
of physical emanation--it just becomes a set of semantic
signals on the page. It just doesn’t hold, so to speak, as verse.

Verse is justified differently from prose. Prose is
technically justified by a printer… Each printer can justify
a piece of prose in a different way, and the rhythm won’t
be affected. Whereas verse is justified by the line ending of
each line; it has to be printed like that every time. That is
why the medium of verse means something. The word
versus actually means “the turning.” So verse means the
turn at the end of the line, and the turn into the next line.
And therefore, whether it’s traditional verse in couplets or
tetrameters…or (more open) forms of free verse, that turn
is still a physical torsion. And I can’t imagine any poet not
feeling it within the body.

Book Cover

the stones of war -

I saw my neighbor today.   When her son was in preschool, they met a lovely family with a son of the same age.  This son served two tours in Iraq.   He was then posted back here, expected to just  hang out at the barracks with polished medals the order of the day, until his last few months were up.  This was expected after he lived in hell in Iraq.  Why couldn't he have just been released, or at least treated like an adult?   Anyway, I have said what happened before, that something slipped for him, and he ended his life.  This man should have been helped upon his return.  Every person returning should be helped.  The pain of this war just goes on and on, and round and round, and Bush is incapable of any feeling on it,  any true emotion, while the rest of us are being ground up inside, while we watch beautiful children destroyed.  I am angry and sad.  
Book Cover

Perhaps what I see in this -

As I consider that if this young man had died in Iraq, he would be a hero, and yet, this way, treatment and grieving are  perhaps a little different, and yet, maybe that is the point of living where we see a more whole picture.   They are exactly the same.  Both are casualities of war, and in some ways we all are.  We are all affected negatively by what is going on.  It is one thing to die in defending something, which is what the soldiers who are fighting there used to  believe, but, now,  we must move out to a wider view, and see the harm we are doing to ourselves.  I am again reminded of Norman Fischer's poem "Hate."


             by Norman Fischer

I have landed here
Falls off the shelf
And years form the mind
Caroom, lost to the next thing
Does this compute?
To act dumb, to say nothing can be done
Our the door, the table
It would not be our plight to witness
Human, the blue sky
All's to be done, and then
Yet give up, fight
And it is to us to prove a point
Hate is like throwing a handful of shit
Onto a red hot ingot
You have to pick it up first
Book Cover

the world today -

This is an amazing link.  Check it out.   I bet you never realized all that you were inviting when you did yoga.  Watch out!!

June 24th is backyard campout night, so you might want to plan to sleep outside that night in your yard, on a deck, or a balcony, or at a neighbor or friend's outdoor place.

The outdoor night is especially important for children as the point is to get children outside into nature, so they learn from it, and reverence it. 

Richard Louv writes this in National Wildlife Federation this month.  "Americans must address the growing need for bonds between nature and children to improve the health and well-being of both."

A 2005 report by the Kaiser Family Foundation, "revealed that kids' average weekly electronic-media exposure is almost 45 hours, more time than most parents spend at full-time jobs."   Children and parents are so busy shuffling between work, school, games, and shopping that American kids have no time in their own yards.  The author says the days of the free-roaming childhood of the 50's is past.  We need now to consciously incorporate nature into ours and our children's lives. 

"Sixty-eight percent of young people have TV's in their rooms.  Half of all youths live in homes where TVs are on most or all of the time, whether anyone is watching or not."

Part of the problem is that parents are afraid to let children out of their sight.   "By 1990 the radius within which children were allowed to roam on their own had shrunk to a ninth of what it had been in 1970."  And yet, amazingly the danger has gone down.  "U.S. children are safer now that they have been at any time since 1975, and violent victimization of children has dropped by more than 38 percent, according to the 2005 Duke University "Child Well Being Index."

Amazingly 95% of Americans support environmental education in schools.  It seems important since it seems we all need a dose of knowing.  "Only 17 percent of Americans know that the fuel efficiency of the average American vehicle has decreased during the past decade."  "45 million Americans wrongly believe that the ocean is a source of drinking water."   And the article goes on.

The point is to go outside tonight and ogle the lovely little sliver of moon, that will be much bigger tonight than last night.  Have fun playing in the light, while giving thanks that you can. 

One ten year old in CA said "I like to play indoors better "cause that's where all the electrical outlets are."   In Nepal, most places have no power at all, and even in Kathmandu the power rotates, so it was usual where I stayed for the power to go out each evening at 6.  Perhaps, a dose of that would be good for us here.   It's fun to light a candle and be awake. 
Book Cover

Politics -

I have been reading more on the candidates and issues.  I do want to vote responsibly.  I have settled on Angelides for governor.  It seems Westley began the mud-slinging, and Angelides is well-endorsed and sounds like he supports the issues I am interested in.  Have fun deciphering it all.