the dance of fully living….

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It’s coming on a shaking loose the stiff of shoulders tight with cold
and the wide outstretching of a thin ice sky,
the sweeping and springing up fronds of things greening,
unfurling,
un-dying,
uncurling into life

And I want to come unwrapped
to feel the sun on skin still pale,
to be lifted free of weary things,
go wide awake and fearlessly
stride right into the turn of earth as wildly she goes spinning,
boldly dipped and twirled into the dance of fully living

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I want to be scooped up
like a bird on currents gliding,
to ride the waves with bold abandon
instead of hiding
or numbing
or just not dying

as I sense the season greening,
turning slow into the springing
all this rolling,  warming,  peeping
my heart bellows to parts still sleeping
how I want to really live
while I’m alive.

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“When it’s all over,  I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular,  and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.
I don’t want to end up having simply visited this world.”
-Mary Oliver

I so wish I could read this out loud to you…..could work the tech support necessary.
It’s meant for the hearing,  not the reading.
I will learn this skill,  I will.

of pots and pans and wings…..

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It’s been long hours driven inside from the cold
and I’ve been cooking to stay close to the fire,
making food with love for body and soul
because sometimes it’s the only way I know
in the muddy places
and so there I stand,  heart a little shaky,
hands solid on the shiny purple of the onion
that I slice through crisp
as the tears run down a healing tide

and I breathe in deep the smell of sunshine crawling up from fresh split peppers,
and the heat climbs,  too,  from my hands soaping dishes
in a sinkfull of prayer poured out over steaming water
and I hear again the sound of singing river
grooving slow across the buried things inside
until the song opens true
and captive things break loose
and I feel it stilled,  the quaking
of this heart running scared.

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and while I pour another lazy stream of olive oil
I pour out,  too,  the song that’s getting unstuck down inside
and a warm breeze grooves across my heartstrings
until my feet have to scoot and slide
and  I feel again safe-held
inside wings that don’t force or squeeze
and heaviness slides off into the water
as I tug free the drain.

I wish you oil and warm and water and light
and a fresh song rising:)

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“What’s lost is nothing to what’s found,
and all the death that ever was,
set next to life,
would scarcely fill a cup.”
-Frederick Buechner

truth in the tremble…..

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Stuff is just exactly
as broken
and shaky
and gimpy
as it is,
but hardly hopeless,
oddly beautiful even,
in the coming undone

so I’m gonna re-think the tremble
and not crumple up small
and slide down under
the coming up short,
trying to fix the wobble
and make it seem smooth
so the flaws don’t show;

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’cause even though it may stop the squeak and shudder
when I flatten out low,
I wasn’t born to be the wedge
beneath these shaky table legs
so maybe we’ve got something here
that isn’t quite real.

Let's find another,  truer way
because I don't want to spend another day
 feeling homesick
 for me.
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(serving this up again because I've had our voices on my heart)
"...the issue of 'stay small, sweet, quiet and modest' sounds
like an outdated problem,  but the truth is that women
still run into those demands whenever
we find and use our voices."
-Brene' Brown

 

Windows and walls…..

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I want my life to be an open window
like the Irregardless of my childhood,
an artisan eatery in my hometown that became a sort of soul tattoo
and warmed my spirit like a cold frame
until my roots could grapple into roomier ground.

Wintertime sunshine poured through tall,  rough hewn windows
lined with green and growing things spilling from cracked pots with mottled glazes;
the raw beauty of their imperfection sang me open,
a fresh and fragrant living painting that infused my hope
and marked me.

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The food was poetry…….farmer’s market marries Van Gogh
and I marveled at the vibe and variety
as if watching new colors being born.
But the glory of the place,
where the creativity angels seemed to gather,
was the bathroom.

I’d slide away from my table and my lemon tahini
and fairly skip down the narrow hallway
to let my soul marinate in the sanctuary
of that tiny room I loved,
because every morsel of wall was splashed with a mural
so bold and daring and brilliant and expressive
it seemed to sing out loud in it’s ebullience,
someone’s heart poured out on walls;
and it made the rest of the world seem dredged in flour and fried up gray.

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But here,  gardens blossomed and spilled,  unconstricted,
down cinderblock and mortar
and became grafted into my sense of possibility.
I wanted this.
I want it still.

And sometimes now,  when life slaps me silly and I startle,
curling up tight for control,
I can unfurl again into that herby,  loamy smelling place of freedom
that got inside me then and something wildly fearless
gently stretches where my vision’s getting pinched
until it begins to reach out again beyond lines
that seem to be closing in
and I rethink walls.

They are just walls.

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“To live is so startling it leaves little time for anything else.”
-Emily Dickenson

 This is a re-write,  served up fresh again with some new ingredients,
because I needed to go there again.  Hope you enjoy:)
And I’ll be sending a copy of my little zine,  Ripplesongs,  to Donna Hopkins;
thanks for all the wonderful comments I got to plop into the hat!

What I’ve been grazing and grooving on……

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I’ve been squeezing the last drops of juice from January,
the one month each year that sometimes feels like vacation
because our gardening business settles down for a long winter’s nap
and I can throw myself more into projects I’ve been saving for the big quiet
but this year has been cheeky,  as the sap is already rising,
and so I’ve been hours in the trees,   pruning,
and I’m sore from the hard and cold and a stiff sort of sleepy.

My blogging process looks a lot,  in my mind,   like gardening and cooking;
I tend what’s growing in my heart,  writing down snippets and making bites of art
and then gather the bits into bouquets
or cobble into soup or salsa or pie
to serve up fresh and in season here every week
(a small lyrical café,  I imagine:))

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but I’m a wintery sort of tired this week up here pruning away
(and I skipped a week already,  didn’t I)
so I’m going to serve them straight up,  the munchies I’ve been grazing on,
the clippings of what I’ve been loving (like turnip greens and their sweet baby roots).
Feel free to snack on the whoosh and whisper of it all:

 ~ There’s  fierce beauty in spending less than we make.

~Urgency is rarely true,  and is always a lie when it’s compulsive.

~ We are –  all of us  –  lovely to God
(don’t let shame hiss at you otherwise)

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 ~  “Hope is a conclusion we stay in
as we hope our way through hopeless circumstances.”
-Robin MacMillan

~There is something profoundly and deeply right with each of us.

~it takes me back home to the healer of my heart,  whispering in the cold,  brave sunshine
how Love walked right into this thumping ache of mine,  went tenderly to the room
where I feel broken,  and moved in bearing balm and comfort and courage
and “where does it hurt?”
and when the wind outside was howling chaos,
became the greenhouse where my fiercest flowers grow.

~ “…the air a library and the record of every life lived,  every sentence spoken,
every word transmitted still reverberating in it.”
-Anthony Doerr’s  All the Light We Cannot See
(potent read and a terrible beauty)

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 I'll soon be down from the trees and back in my heart's kitchen,
 stirring up something hopeful yummy to serve
  but didn't want to go silent so long so here is my little offering.
Much love and light and lift to your astonishingly beautiful heart - xoxox
(little drawing to give away a copy of my February issue zine,  Ripplesongs;
 leave a comment
 and your name goes in the fuzzy hat)

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