Friday, 31 August 2012

He is Man

He is man

Sometimes soft
Sometimes hard

Photograph by Photographer Wendy Metcalfe-Morrison

But always a man who walks like a lion
With generosity of Spirit and a fire in his heart.

So many curious parts, that make up the fullness of a man
Beginnings. Middles. Endings.

Sometimes Vexing

But he is made in the image of creation
And there is always beauty in his order and in his chaos

He is man

Thursday, 30 August 2012

In Loving Me

Two phrases that have power to shut me down 

Are "One day we will" and "Someday we will".

 Early on, life taught me "One day" and "Someday" 

Rarely, if ever come.
So in loving me
  If you choose to love me

Let us share with each other the gifts and delights of today

And let "One day" and "Someday" 
Be what they shall be.

Sisters of Marrow

We are Sisters of Marrow 

Nourished by connection that goes deeper than blood

Roots entwined in the mainstream of life's origin

 That place, where blood and alliances are formed

Making the passage ...



(photo taken by Photographer Wendy Morrison)

Monday, 27 August 2012

Weaving Our Lives Into One Another

Recently while visiting a friend, we happened upon a discussion about symbolism. We marvelled at how the world's cultures naturally were drawn to nature and transubstantiated the imagery found there to symbolize what was happening to them soulfully, spiritually, and culturally.

Take for example braiding: 

Some native peoples believe braiding merges the present with the past and the future, making them one with their ancestors and descendants and therefore they can be quite selective as to whom they allow to braid their hair.

Nordic peoples believed that those who could make good braids held powers that could tame the winds. 
Frigga, the Nordic goddess of love, marriage, and destiny was a sky goddess who sat at her spindle weaving the destiny of Gods and man. She was responsible for weaving the clouds (and therefore for sunshine and rain and the fertility of the crops), and she was also responsible for weaving the fates. 

The Celtic people's knotwork interlace is probably the most recognized kind of celtic art, resembling braided strips that bend and weave amongst themselves. These are believed to represent the interconnection of life and humankind's place within the universe.

This leaves me to contemplate on how we, as family and friends, weave and braid our daily  "physical, mental, emotional and soulful paths" into one another's lives ...

 physically entwining fingers and hands to show just how much we delight in having our loved ones present in our lives ... 

... mentally engaging, merging into and building upon each others thoughts and ideas ...

... emotionally investing in dreams and visions by pulling together and sharing faith, tools and talents ... 

...  Soulfully fusing  words and our actions into prayers and blessings

And how beautiful when we as lovers can allow ourselves to be fully open and vulnerable to one another
In those sacred moments, all our paths converge 
swirling and ravelling

And oneness, ripe and full,  is tasted

Honestly Woman ...

Feeling more desperate than foolish (mind you, not much more) I sat before Madame Zora.

I'd been told by a good friend that this woman was amazing and I ought to see her, but HONEST TO GOD, I was beginning to wonder if it hadn't been just a cruel joke. 

Madame Zora looked like something that had stepped off a gypsy caravan. She was clothed head to toe in black satin and lace. Wild hair that obviously had not spent much time around a comb framed her wizened face. Bright red lips and fingernails seemed to compete for which could best accentuate nicotine stained teeth and fingers.

But the fortune teller's presence was commanding and her piercing gaze left me squirming, feeling unsettled and exposed so I was relieved when her heavily accented voice finally broke the awkward silence.

"So? What brings you here to me?"

I tried to speak but the words wouldn't come...but as it turned out, there was no need.

"It is good to own one's own life...but it comes at a price, no?" Leisurely passed over red lips

A barely audible "Yes." was all I could muster.

Madame Zora's focus went to the milky white globe in front of her and she let out a softly whispered "I see ..." that sent a shudder travelling from the back of my neck, down my spine to rest in my tail bone.

Photograph taken by Photographer Wendy Metcalfe-Morrison

Madame Zora continued.

"It wasn't that long ago that you believed yourself trapped with nothing left to give
But time and tears are wonderful healers and I see a heart that is full and beats strong
How wonderful that you no longer require distractions to masquerade themselves as cures and salvations!"

Elaborately adorned hands jingled their dime store treasures as they swirled above the magickal white orb.

"Of course...

A long red nail tapped the top of the ball

There is baggage
Choosing to extract oneself from covenants
Right or wrong
It is costly 
And will require time, tears and resolution"

Madame Zora sat back in her chair, her blue eyes assessing every last inch of me. 

"In some ways it would be easier for you to go back to the old familiar way of being
As painful as it was, your head and belly know you physically survived it

You don't know that about this new life you are carving out of faith
Very much like playing with smoke and mirrors, No?
However, I don't believe in going back
What one left behind will always be there waiting for them should they return

BUT, there has been a gathering of debt 
And debts must be paid before we are honestly free to move on 

Madame Zora's hands adoringly cupped the white globe 

So, what does your future tell me?

The future holds much promise
But it demands much
That you be honest
Do the work
Pay all debts
Ask for forgiveness, where needed 
(from others and yourself)
And move forward
Being Bravely and Honestly Woman

Smiling softly, Madame Zora leaned in and held her hand out, palm up .

“That will be ten dollars please."

Photograph by Photographer Wendy Metcalfe-Morrison

O Lovely Spring

At 5 am, I step out my door
To be greeted by the warm rains of spring
Fingers of  wind caress my skin
Thirsting body and soul, drink deeply

O Lovely Spring!
How we have longed for your glorious resurrection
The willows dance and whisper 
The backyard Murder and I, eavesdrop on hushed secrets

"She's coming." the willows sway
Our eyes scan the skyline, alert for signs

O Lovely Spring!
How we have longed for your glorious return
The heady scent of you fills the air
The cadency of blood's flow quickens
We quiver in anticipation
For the warm touch that loosens winter's grasp

O Lovely Spring!
How we have longed for your glorious resurrection

Sunday, 26 August 2012

A Measure of Comfort

The drip was constant, a metronome measuring out time.
Bleary eyed, spirit bruised from another all-night argument 
She had sought solace in the forest and the rain. 

Perched on a rock, surrounded by the dichotomy of nature - Stability and chaos 
Indiscriminate raindrops creating the rhythmic beading of water
She reflected upon her own duality

The steady beat of water had etched a small rivulet 
Upon which a poplar seed was now travelling
On a journey to create new life in a barren place.

She wondered if all "constants" do the same
Create paths that can be used for the good

The thought brought with it a measure of comfort.

Saturday, 25 August 2012

A Conversation with Aleksandr


Devastated was the word.  Yes, it fit.

The night before found her restless and fitful,  up and down, churning, besieged with scattered thoughts. Noisy chattering, fragmented bits of fear, hurt, shame, regret, disappointment and judgement, all jostling with one another, all scrabbling like jackals to be the first to gnaw on her bones.

Why was she carrying the full burden of shame? His flaws had been uncovered on several occasions.

But as the indignation rose,  the 
words of Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn  wept through like an Artesian wellspring of wisdom reminding, "But the line dividing good and evil cuts through the heart of every human being. And who is willing to destroy a piece of his own heart?"

"WAIT JUST ONE MINUTE HERE, AL!" she protested.


"Oh no!" says she to herself,  as she dusted off her Ouija board, "You will come back here!"  

Nervous fingers and shaky vocal chords work together in a synchronized effort to pull him away from his glass of fermented potato and there he was, a bearded wild haired man with an intense stare that left her wriggling under her skin. But she was on a mission and she would not be deterred. 

Clearing her throat, she began, "Mr. Solzhenitsyn ---"

Aleksandr raised his hand up  in a gesture to stop her and his heavily accented English softly penetrated the air. 

"Pебенок, tell me, what do you need?" 

"I need to understand." 

"Tell me why." he pressed.

"Why?"  She forced her words past the hurt that sat lumped in her throat,"I'm trying to make sense of betrayal. How can people insist they truly love even after lies have been uncovered?"

"Tell me Кэтрин, would you agree that morality can often be found to be at odds with passion and desire?"

She nodded.

He continued, "And that our good intentions are often found to be at odds with unconscious motivations?"

"Yes." she whispered

Aleksandr sat thoughtful for a moment and then gently and softly spoke. "You understand Кэтрин, your problem is, you want too much from understanding. It cannot turn shadow into light and it cannot right wrongs. So, no Pебенок, you are not in need of understanding. What you need is to accept that a thing is what it is." 

He drew on his pipe and smiled tenderly.  "And you need to make a decision. You must decide if your wounds have made you more ... or have made you less."

Tuesday, 21 August 2012

What's Charlie Brown Doing Here????

So, there are days when the Peanuts character, Charlie Brown, seems to reside deep within my hollowed- out soul.  Sound pathetic enough for you? 
God, I hope so ... or you’re just cruel. 
And I know he’s in there, because I can hear his lonely "call out" echoing in my head.
I have always thought of myself as more of a Peppermint Patty/Snoopy combination, so when I hear that plaintive call of his,  my first thought is, “What the hell is Charlie Brown doing inside me?”

And then I break out in a sweat because “Holy Shit!” I realize, “He's asking me!" 
Where the Hell is Lucy and her 5-cent therapy stand?
I’m guessing Dr. Lucy is off on vacation, or propped up against a keyboard some place mooning over some *Could-not-be-more-detached* musician.  (Now, there’s a case of "Physician, heal thyself!")

But back to Charlie … I seem to be stuck with Chuck and his *impossible-to-answer* question.

So, I clothe myself in the gossamer gown filled with sad, discarded memories, lie under a firmly rooted being,  and pray that perhaps I shall come upon a balanced truth for Charlie

and for me...

Sunday, 19 August 2012

There's Room For Us All

(Photographer - Wendy Morrison)
No child wants to be labeled odd, strange or weird and if they are, it leaves its mark.            

I floundered through life and a school system that catered to the mainstream and in an effort to fit in,  I denied my wild and free artist its voice and tried to be cool...what I actually managed was to be less of a freak.
Many years and days of monotony later I found myself in a great deal of emotional pain and I KNEW I needed healing. Through the healing process I discovered I needed to fall in love again…

this time with myself. 
The first step in self love I was informed is self acceptance but how was I to accept all those characteristic oddities I had become so ashamed of? Accept that idiosyncratic way of “Being” I had worked so hard to bury? Oh, the stretching I had to do to allow myself to begin to believe that my being who I truly was, was not a mistake or a deformity of character but rather how God intended me to be.
(Photographer - Wendy Morrison)
But Oh The blessed freedom in that!

To no longer believe that God merely tolerated me. To be able to fathom that he or she delighted in me! How glorious to walk away from that, which had fenced me in for so long…my need for the approval of others. 
And magically folks started appearing in my life. Delightfully odd, strange and gloriously interesting folks that I affectionately and affirmatively refer to as my tribe.

I embrace these strange and wonderful folk. I give thanks for the occasions I have to celebrate their journeys, for the opportunities I have to co-create with them and I have made it my heart’s intention to find and welcome as many of my lost tribe into the folds of my heart as this journey through the world allows.

Saturday, 18 August 2012

Being "Alive to"

I looked up mindful many years ago and there were lots of words and phrases that appeared after it.
The phrase that stuck with me was 

"alive to"

Imagine that...being "alive to" 
Your emotions
Your choices
 Your actions

Well, this Midsummer's Eve, I, and a bevy of beautiful magickal women
Gathered together to be "Alive To" 

~ To Be Mindful ~

To mindfully release all we had in our lives that no longer served us
(Which made room)
To mindfully invite into our lives what we desired and dreamed we could build our new year upon
And to mindfully give thanks for it all
The Good. The Bad. The Ugly. The Beautiful.

We gathered around a spirited fire with tiny offerings of herbs, glitter and paper
One at a time, loosening the restraints on the past
Setting free what no longer belonged
Making room to welcome what would

And what was left the next day was memories and ashes
And they were gathered and shared 

Beautiful ashes 
Dark, rich and glittering
Containing all our limitlessness and beauty
 All our chaos and humanness
And all the blessings of ...

 "Alive To"

Thursday, 16 August 2012

Hissing Cat

Hissing Cat! Why does your back rise up and chaff the sky?

This "ready to rise up and claw" attitude deprives you as much as it protects you.

Are you that fragile? 

Has the creator not given you choice? Inspiration? Intellect? 
Then why are you so hesitant to use them?

Is your life so right? So perfect? So full? 
You have no need for the joy of expansion?

I wonder...
What if your fear, Kitty Cat, is not of the unknown?

But of the known. 

We have drank in indifferent and contemptuous looks.  
And be they assuming or aloof, 
From those we love and know or from those we admire and want in our lives...

Who ever they come from,  they leave a bitter taste.  

Yes, it's hard not to care or let it affect you but this is your life Catherine Ann. 
Your one wild and precious life. 

God gave you the heart of an Adventurer!
 An Explorer! 

So do it! 

And trust in the Creator 
And trust in you 
And trust that Love will always find you no matter where you find yourself.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Susannah Conway's "August Break"

Going to have some photographic fun with Susannah Conway! 

Posting one pic a day for the month of August. 

Here I go!

(photo taken by Wendy Morrison)


I am still trying to figure out  "expectation".

When I get up in the morning I expect things;  a floor under my feet,  loved ones looking relatively the same as they did the night before, the car starting, etc, etc, etc. And the fact they continue to happen encourages the expectation.

Expectation has a dark side though, and I've been bitten by expectations I have placed on others that have not been met,  by being unable to meet other's expectations of me and the times I have placed unrealistic expectations upon myself and was crushed under the weight of them.

But what if expectations are direct natural by-products of our chosen daily routines? Simply those ways of being we all have, created from options presented and found, and from preferences and passions explored and simply require that we be mindful that we do not crush others or find ourselves crushed under the weight of the unrealized.

For me, its also consciously making the shift from impatiently waiting for the appearance of my Happily Ever After, to rolling up my sleeves, digging in and getting busy with the messy process of creating my Happiness After.

Thursday, 2 August 2012

Tricks and Gimmicks

The ache to know consumed him

He sat before Madame Zora and her Crystal Ball

Crammed in a hot, tiny closet of a room

 That reeked heavily of mildew, nicotine, and cheap perfume

The stench of it almost made him gag

But it was worth it

He had his sights set on a woman

And soon this crazy old woman would tell him how to get to the Land of her Bliss

That delicious place of open lips and warm hips

Gnarled fingers danced over the purple globe

Pulling secrets from it's dark depths

"Ooooh, there is only one way this woman's  favours can be won."  wheezed a heavy smoker's voice.

"How?" the breathless man asked

"Look and see for yourself." red lips whispered as a long crooked finger adorning a red laquered nail pointed to the centre of the magickal sphere, "You must journey through out the Land of Heart, Mind and Soul. That will be ten dollars please." the Madame's voice rasped

"Wait!" he shouted in frustration "What the hell is that suppose to mean? God, what a waste of ten bucks. This is just a damn sham! Tricks and gimmicks performed by showmen!"

(Photo by Wendy Morrison)

The wizened old Madame's eyes narrowed into two tiny slits and she murmured softly, "You try to shame me for using tricks and gimmicks? You who come to consult Madame Zora's ball to find ways to short cut yourself up this woman's skirt? What is that if not tricking? You criticize the showman? The ones who take the time to perfect their craft and take pride in their showing? You want this woman? Then do the work and take pride in perfecting the craft of loving and in showing it. Take time every day and engage her mind. Show her you are capable of deep thought. Touch her heart. Show her that you care about people and the world around you. Honour her soul by showing her the many fathoms of yours. Now! That will be ten dollars please."

Our Shadows

We have been taught by society to hide our dark spaces and places
In some cases we have hidden them for so long and so well
We forget we own them

I suspect however, that our shadows never forget they own us