I am not usually a fan of poetry which is too sing-song-y, but this one popped into my head almost fully formed and begged to be used as a prayer for the new moon ritual I am planning tomorrow night in honor of a renewed friendship and lessons to come.
Welcome, The Morrigan
The Raven wings, they suit her,
because the birds are quick and smart
Feared by ancients when her legend formed,
She took their spirit to heart.
Softly borne on blackened feathers,
She now wings into my life
to guide me deeper into my truth
and help me shine my light.
The Bear could be her totem, too,
for her ferocious guard of the land
and her gentle, nurturing other face,
her firm but loving hand.
And then, there’s the playful maiden form,
dancing in on faery winds!
She catches me up in her arms
and we giggle as we spin.
This goddess guide, The Morrigan,
a new and ancient friend,
your faces I remember now
from other wheres and whens.
I honor you and welcome you-
I’ve missed our moonlit meetings!
To my friend and teacher once again,
I offer love and warmest greetings.
Those who cannot remember the past are condemned to repeat it. ~ George Santayana
About a year ago, maybe a bit longer, I started to hear my intuition say, “Write that story”.
I have always (rather secretly) considered myself a writer. I daydreamed…so very quietly, way back in the hinterlands of my imagination…of seeing my name in print. The dream was so big, so bright, that I couldn’t look directly at it. It seemed so far out of reach, and it seemed like I should be doing something so much more important with my mind, my energy than writing stories and poetry. I believed the faded voices of my teachers and other adults who told me I needed to use my intellect to BE something…doctor, lawyer, activist, teacher…something big that would change the world and move it closer to the ideal I knew it could be. But I couldn’t choose a path (because I didn’t want any of those paths, and they were not for me). And I beat myself endlessly for it. Until a few years ago when I gradually started to adjust to the idea that I could be, do, and have what I wanted. Full stop.
It hasn’t been an easy adjustment. I keep noticing that, while I love and admire and completely understand the value of other artists’ and creatives’ work in the world, I have not been able to accept that my own work is valuable and necessary in the same way. I had an epiphany this weekend, though.
It was born of a discussion with my husband, as so many of my most valuable insights are. We were talking about how when one country invades another, one of the first things they often do is burn or destroy the art and culture of the invaded land. As we talked about why, it started to really sink in that the art and culture of a people is how they remember their emotions. And not just one country, but the world… the whole world does this.
As humans, we can only hold so much emotion in one lifetime. It would be too overwhelming, too paralyzing to hold all that in our consciousness. I see people all the time who are burnt out or desensitized by trying to feel compassion for all the things in this world that deserve compassion and trying to care about all the things that need to be cared about. They can’t help but compartmentalize…”This isn’t happening to me, so I can’t look at that right now.” It’s human nature; it’s a necessary survival instinct, especially in our current culture. We all feel the need to distance ourselves from the pain, and even the joy of others because it is just so overwhelming to feel it all. But there is a risk inherent in doing this: we become unable to empathize with others who have different experiences than our own.
Why is that a risk? Because in a world of almost 9 billion people, those with vastly different lives from ours are everywhere, and humans are well known to develop profound fears of what they don’t know and don’t understand. And fear of the unknown and different is one of the underlying causes of almost every major social ill known to mankind.
So, what does this have to do with the importance of artists? The answer lies, for me, in a definition I once heard of Art: Art is anything that evokes a strong emotional reaction. Art reminds us of emotions we have forgotten. It allows us to step into the shoes of another for a moment, to feel their pain or joy or giddiness or sorrow. It plunges us into empathy. We begin to connect with each other again. And do you know what happens when we do that? Of course you do. We begin to treat each other with greater compassion and understanding. And do you know what happens when we do that? We raise the vibration of the entire planet.
Many of us believe we are here to anchor Love into Mother Earth at this time, to raise Her vibration to a level that is more harmonious, closer to Love, for the good of Her and all Her inhabitants. Just like with any cause or organization, there are lots of roles to fill. There are the Activists, who go out and march and write letters and make phone calls. They remind us we have to take action, to implement what we believe and make it a fact of life for all of us, not just those who can speak. There are the Healers and Teachers. They ensure that we are able to return to the field again and again. They remind Body and Soul and Mind of what needs to be done and how to do it. There are the Organizers and the Farmers and the Nurturers.
And I wanted to help, but I could not find my place among them, until I realized that Artists are as vital to the cause of Anchoring Love as any other role…of course we are…because Artists remind us of what history felt like.
So, gradually, I am settling into my place as a Keeper of Memory, a Guardian of Emotion. This is my role in the changing world, my specific lightworker job. It is my honor, and my duty. It’s what I came here to be and do. And do it, I will.
My path is strewn with love!
I feel the embrace of the Universe,
Reminding me that all is well.
The light that glows at the end of this
Flowery and tree-lined tunnel
Is not my future, but my Now
Seen from the perspective of a world
That lives in three dimensions
And believes that Time is a Thing and a Line.
I sink down into the sweetness
Of every moment that is Now with a sigh,
As if sinking into a warm bath at the end of a long day.
Remember, I think, the sweetness of all Moments.
Remember they all brown and wither and remain pink and alive forever
Like the flowers at my feet.
I ran across this gorgeously written piece from Rebelle Society by Danielle Dulsky. It is a wonderful reminder of our Sacred Feminine power, and that to balance the energy in the here and now, the world needs us to embrace our ferocious womanly-ness.
January 17th is a traditional day for blessing the trees, as I have recently learned.
A little gentle encouragement to begin to wake up, stretch, and look toward the warmer months of growth can never go wrong.
In that spirit, and to bless the trees in my own life tonight, I wrote a short poem that you may feel free to read to the trees in your life.
When the Sun rises high in the sky
May your leaves feel the warmth of His regard.
When the Moon appears, regal, in the night
May your soul dance with Her music.
When the rains come and the soil is heavy with life
May your roots find water and nourishment.
When I come before you with my heart full of Love
May you feel it in my arms around you.
Grow, lovely Tree, vibrant and strong
And spread your strength to your Grove-Mates.
May Sun and Moon, Water, Soil, and Love
Attend you for all of your days.
Two cups of coffee
And epiphanies galore
Dancing in my seat!
Now, rise, my Goddess
Into the light of morning
So, what would happen,
if I just stopped trying to fix myself?
(Am I really so broken
to begin with?)
What if I stopped reading
the books, the blogs, the articles, the keep-your-chin-up posts?
What if I refused to keep seeing myself as missing something, like a car without electric windows or satellite radio?
What if I just rested and ate and slept
and colored and cut things out of paper?
There always seems to be something to “heal”,
something to “process”,
something to “release”.
And I am exhausted and flat as a bicycle tire.
“Fill your own well first!”
“Set your boundaries!”
What well? What boundaries?
When was I supposed to learn about that stuff?
And, who was supposed to teach me?
I think it might be a sign that,
instead of looking for my next fix,
I am getting really pissed off.
But, I’m not sure what it’s a sign
Alone in the evening, I pause at a sound I love:
I go in search and find you sleeping, snoring gently,
My pillow wrapped in your embrace.
Borne on the breeze of tenderness that wanders our home,
I hear the echoes of a love that sustains me:
There is laughter…yours and mine
Mingled together like tea and honey:
Intimate, entwined, joyful, loving.
Traces of discord…only sometimes:
Misunderstandings, the sounds of two separate souls
Struggling to become more
Intimate, entwined, joyful, loving.
A ribbon of sorrow, shared together
As we face the deaths, tragedies, disappointments of our lives,
And try to remain intimate, entwined, joyful, loving.
And whispers of passion as neither of us has ever known it-
Frightening in its beauty, its ferocity, its innocence and
Always intimate, entwined, joyful, loving.
You stir in your sleep, and the breeze of echoes is disturbed.
I slowly prepare the house for sleep and
Gently replace my pillow still in your embrace
(Nov 16, 2004)