Gracefully taking to the heights of the open skies
Calling softly to her lover above the violins
As though she was meant to be there all along
… at last…
a sensual harmony of lost enchantment
…am I at the very heart of it
….or is it at the very heart of me…
…the rhythm echoes
Until, I am no longer my own
….but, yours my love
a starry midnight note
in the forever of your painted song…
I come to rest near the water’s edge at evening. Van Gogh’s Starry Night in my mind’s eye. Beethoven harmonizes well with the soulful sounds of the woods behind me. Ebudae too. And, I am carried far away to lovely places within my heart.
Early last evening I drifted off to the sounds of a favorite song on repeat. I wonder how they do it, the composers I mean. However do they know which notes to place beside each other. They choose so carefully. How can they be certain that these two will be more beautiful if they are together. The best music is that way. I can’t listen enough. It is over too soon. I only want it to go on and on…
When I awakened at midnight the song had stopped. But, the rain had just begun. It came strong against the roof. I love it when it does and I haven’t anywhere to be. If only the roof was a tin one…. I snuggled under the covers and deeper into dreams. There were wings there, so many beautiful wings.
I chose some flower bulbs a few weeks ago. The lilies will be a rainbow of colors. The clematis will climb and cover the fence. I am most looking forward to the hollyhocks. I’ve never managed them before. If all goes well they will be tall spires of ruffled pastels. I hope…They are waiting on me. The days are warm enough. There is plenty of rain. I even know where they will be planted. It is time.
A new bunny friend has taken up residence in the nearby woods. She drives the dogs berserk going through the fence at her leisure. She comes and goes as if she owns the place. “It’s been awfully nice, see ya soon!” she calls over her fluffy cottontail. Meanwhile Jack and Dobby bark in helpless frustration that they cannot follow. Good for her!
Have I ever told you that early memory at my very first home? The one when I was very young. The story of the yellow sofa. Oh, I must tell you that one soon. It’s such a happy thing. It’s nice to tuck away the sweet ones and keep them. Like the time you said to me….
Yes, that one’s very dear. I treasure it…as I do you…
Yesterday was the Easter egg hunt! I wish you could have seen the children lined up in a row clutching tight their baskets. They waited so patiently to be let loose in the grass. Anticipation filled the emptiness! I was paired with a new little girl who was heart sad with missing her daddy. But, for a while she let go of her sorrow to search for beauty at her tiny feet. I noticed her pass over the purples and the blues in favor of the pinks and yellows. It touched my heart the way she carefully chose what was just right for her. It wasn’t about having the most or even about having more. A few lovely eggs were enough.
Do you know what I love…that there was plenty…of everything. No one was left out. All belonged. All were found. Happy baskets. Smiling children. And the sky was kind enough not to rain until we had had our fun. One sweet face looked up at me in pure joy and asked – can we do that again?! All over again! I don’t think he even realized there was something inside of the eggs. The search was joyful gift enough.
Now, I’m in a quiet place, one I come to over and again. It’s a searching kind of place where the being here is gift enough. I’m writing to you as I listen to a favorite song on repeat. And I wonder how the composer knew how all those beautiful notes would be even more lovely beside each other….
I have come to learn that I am doomed to be eternally five years old. Doomed, in the best possible way. It’s all about the questions. I’m sure you’ve noticed that about me by now. I start with them. I end on them. I throw a few in the middle for good measure. It’s not that I work at them. It’s just…there I am and there they are and what am I to do with that?
Now where is that exactly? And how often do you go there? See what I mean?
Also, I write as I walk. At least sometimes, I do. A question, a thought, a string of words arrives like leaves drifting to the ground in autumn. I pause in silence to consider them as they come to land. Oh yes indeed, that one is quite lovely. I’ll save it for later. This very writing that you’re reading began on a wooded walk peppered with questions.
This duck. The one that huddles next to the pier day after day. What kind is it meant to be? Is it male or female? I mean, would it be male or female if it was real? Why do the other ducks, the real ones, avoid it so? It seems friendly enough to me. Is there something about the plastic that upsets them? And is it lonely? Or is it happy to have the simplicity and beauty of the pond all to itself?
Someone will certainly know the answer to at least one of those. Then there will be one less question for me to fret over. That leaves 999 to go…
When the beaver slaps his tail upon the water, is he saying hello to me or rather a very firm goodbye? And why did he move from the south side of the pond to the north side over the winter? Are real estate values better over there?
Trees that bloom too early, long before they should….are they smarter than the other trees after all and get to bloom twice?
Today is less than freezing and yet the birds are twittering, while yesterday they were silent. Does singing keep them warm or are they chittering about the frigid temperatures? It’s positively icy over here Mabel! Well, put on a sweater Marjorie.
Why are violets so tiny? And why are they blooming right now? Don’t they know it’s colder than cold?
Tights vs leggings vs yoga pants? Oh, yes. I’m going there. Which ones do you love and why? And what’s the difference really? Don’t be fooled by outward appearances. There is a difference. I do know this one…sort of…maybe…
Tights are…tight. Who knew? They’re thin and enclose your feet. You wear them to warm your legs under a dress. Theoretically. Wait, tights are Not warm and they’re miserable to wear! Miserable, I tell you. Am I right ladies?! I honestly don’t see the point of them. If anyone ever invents tights that do their job, I’m all in. Until then…no thank you. Plus, they often try to strangle you. Fun fact, as soon as I was of an age to choose my own clothes without my mother’s input…I gave up tights. Done and done.
Then there are leggings. They are also tight but…don’t have feet. Ah! Ok then. No feet. Gotcha. They are absolutely no warmer than tights on a cold day. However, some indeterminate someone wants you to believe they are. That someone is seriously misguided. Leggings are not warmer. Plus your socks don’t fit right and bump into the offending leg wear in weird ways. And if that’s not bad enough, leggings sag in a “tights” like way that makes you want to…well, I’ll leave that note off for now. Let’s just say they’re as ugh as tights.
Onwards and upwards to yoga pants! I’m really not sure what to say here. Guess what…they’re tight! Who knew? Oddly enough yoga pants are in fact comfortable…unless it’s above 75 degrees. Then, they’re hot! Hot! Like Texas in August Hot! Carolina Reaper Hot! If you see anyone wearing yoga pants on a day that’s above 75 degrees I guarantee you they are moving quickly from an air conditioned building to an air conditioned vehicle. Or they are seriously cold natured. I will award yoga pants a gold star in this way though…they actually fit. It’s brilliant! Brilliant I tell you! By the sheer numbers one sees of them…everywhere…I now have a new question. Is almost every woman aspiring to be a yoga instructor? Or are they seeking the comfort that neither tights nor leggings offer?
So to sum up, all three versions are tight. Some fit. Some…don’t. If you put feet on leggings they could be tights. If you cut the feet off of tights they could be leggings. I think yoga pants would lose their value if you added feet. That would just be strange. Which brings me back to my original question, tights vs leggings vs yoga pants? What’s up with that?
Nursing homes are supposed to be sad places. Why do we think so? Why do we declare nursing homes to be sad while grocery stores and shopping malls are deemed happy?
When I go to a place focused on “stuff” the people don’t seem very happy to me. Just an observation. They’re grumpy and children are often crying. Or maybe that’s me crying because I want to go home. The children probably want the same thing that I do while their parents are devastated that they missed out on some important “stuff”. There’s someone over there looking at the stuff I’m looking at. What if they get it first?! I won’t have the stuff I think I need! That’s when panic sets in and there’s a mad dash to acquire the very important stuff. You know…like the last set of yoga pants on the planet. Going out of business folks. There will be no more yoga pants…in the history of…like…ever. Speaking of ever, how long is that anyway?
Shopping questions are easy for me. Do I really need that? Do I have to go shopping? Can I go home now? Do you hear that five year old talking again?
But when I walk through a nursing home the questions loom large over me. Why is there suffering? Why is there so much pain in the world? Whatever can I do to ease…anything for anyone…in any way…ever? What can I do?
I wander through the doors with my heart open and my eyes too, and discover there are a few quiet answers as close as my next breath. These busy spaces are filled to the brim with gentle souls always ready to offer the lovely gift of a smile. They always have time for a warm greeting. Their stories are always divine and as varied as the books on a library shelf! They will most certainly make you laugh. Sometimes they will make you cry. In truth we need very little in this world…but we need that little so very much…
Which brings me of course to…cookies! A writing about 5 year old me and questions would never be complete without a cookie section. Am I right? Who loves them? Hint…me. Who doesn’t love them? Hint…not me. Can I eat too many in a day? Are they good for breakfast? Lunch? Dinner? Should one slather them in peanut butter? Should one dunk them in milk or hot tea? Are chocolate chip better than oatmeal? If one adds chocolate chips to oatmeal, is it then a chocolate chip cookie or an oatmeal cookie? Some might declare it to be an oatmeal chocolate chip at that point. Valid argument but now we’re getting into tricky territory, the very nature of a cookie and its ingredients. Philosophy at its utmost! If one adds icing or frosting or glaze does it lose its cookieness? And my two personal favorites –
Are cookies the world’s most perfect food?
Do cookies make everything better?
If you’ve been following me for any length of time you already know my answers to the last two. Smiles and winks.
Are there more questions than I have answers for? Will I ever stop asking? Would I even want to? What about you? Are you eternally five years old? And do you question too?
Welcome to my world. Come rest with me for a while. We shall have cookies and tea and ask questions…together…and won’t that be delightful?
ellie894 March 11, 2019
P. S. Dog questions are a volume all their own and will be saved for another place and time…
I am weary of being misunderstood in the twilight world of men who claim to know.
They only see what they have a mind to see.
Eternally I pace the darkness
Rumbling about my cave in thunderous tones
That you, oh lost one, mistake for signs of danger
But, it is to my own dear love that I cry out.
Her silence fills my nights with fireflies
She alone sees beyond my masked and stone facade
…to find the gentleness of who I truly am.
Before I tell you the tale of her, I humbly ask, what do you see?
Do you see a mountain…that you will not climb, as you believe me to be the unmarked path leading to the cliff that will drop you to your failing…
Do you see waters of the deep…fearing I will take your life…your very breath is at stake…you choose instead to float helplessly on the surface, gasping for air…
Do you see a desert…closing tight your eyes against the biting winds heavy with my stinging sands…and leave me parched and alone…you haven’t the stillness to weather my life giving vision…
Do you see a rock…casting me as the stoic boulder on a dreary forest floor…only a hurdle that blocks your way and nothing more. Once you paused to look a second time imagining that you heard my beastly growl. You turned and fled all the faster…
Do you see a burning sun…and feel me in the scorching rays…too hot to touch….You run far, until you come to the land of cold shadows and bundle yourself in ill begotten furs…never trusting that I could thaw your frozen heart…
Do you see darkness…quaking in the unknowable abyss of nightmares and time gone wordlessly by…drifting and forgotten…neither clouds nor moon…only an emptiness of nothing…
Is there any place at all where I reside that you can understand?
When you look upon me
Wherever I may be
You only see the reflection
Of your own fear and longing.
That is not
And never will be
There is One who knows me.
Her heart is strong.
She listens and searches for the truth of me.
So, to her…
I am the softest mist that whispers to her soul on a hopeful mountaintop…there she is free to touch the sky as she waits in peaceful rest.
I am the swirling currents of the ocean tide rich with life and iridescent beauty. In passion I bear her to the depths of ecstasy fulfilled.
I am the river song with no beginning embracing soft her luscious land, an ever giving oasis, the growing mystery of the sands.
I am the lover that stands resolute beside her in the magic of the faery wood. The growl that you thought you heard…that was only my laughter as her breath tickled soft my ear.
I am the warmth upon her face on a cold and bitter day. She turns to me in a graceful arch believing spring is on its tender way.
I am the shooting star that holds her hand as we dance across a midnight sky…lighting up her darkness…never do we ask how or why…
I am the sweetest dream that kisses her to brilliant life in a moonlit voyage of once upon a time.
Do you see me for what I am…
Or are you still wrapped tight in fear of what you cannot understand…
She holds my soul and it is enough.
Her love is the very strength of me
And I am the gentle beast of her trusting heart
We echo in forever dreams
Sailing celestial waves never more to part
I know all of these treasures because she tells me so…because she sees me so.
And now, if you’ll excuse me…I’m off to all the wheres that we will go…
ellie894 February 4, 2019
My warm thanks to Rory for a grand and friendly blog site, the kind tag and his strong and wonderful image!
Below is my gift of an image to All of you. I invite anyone who is so inspired to use it to tell a tale!
Bird song and light footsteps on a woodland path, carry me.
loved flowers, oceans and woodland walks even though she spent much of her life behind office walls that bear the weight of busy concrete cities.
My ever sassy grandmother…
She baked a tender biscuit…brought order to an unruly boardroom full of men where she was the only woman…grew fairy roses like magic…and tended the loving spirit of a sister soon to depart the world…
She laughed brilliantly with her head thrown back in joyful abandon.
She cried the tears of heartbreak that linger in ways that others will never know…because one pushes them aside to keep on….
My brother arrived first in the family so, he bestowed her with her grandmother name. Bejo was one of a kind…
She gave me libraries, woods, old photographs, art and writing….we explored a thousand things when I was a little girl…
Bejo wore a cotton dress with her sensible boots, even in the wilderness. A walking stick accompanied her, just in case. No adventure would dare to escape her!
I can hear her still –
One must tend to oneself no matter where one might be in life.
Sit up straight.
Please and thank you.
Use a soft voice.
There is always time for beauty.
Paint just because you want to.
Write to me…
Thoughts on the circle of time, travel with me wherever I go…
I wander the forest with them…every day.
A Celtic knot returns unto itself.
Just as my walk circles and centers me.
When I return home, then I have completed another circle, albeit an off kilter messy one.
As long as it comes round to its beginning, doesn’t that make it a circle…
A Celtic knot spread is a circle.
A heart pushed in all directions to its outermost is a circle too.
I wonder over why a moment or an image or a thought takes hold of me.
I am helpless to let it go until I move through it mindfully
And make it my own somehow.
I write and write to clear my head and cleanse my heart.
always…there is more.
Souls don’t want to be told what to do…not really.
Bejo certainly didn’t!
She was the teller, never the tellee!
I think there is enough of that in the world already. Telling, I mean.
Perhaps, instead a soul wishes for a reminder that life can somehow bear sorrow and that love will always find a way…
At the age of 19 my grandmother married a man from New Orleans
who played minor league baseball by day
and a jazz fiddle by night…
She left him
Never to return
When my father was only three years old
They took a train back to her home in Texas
Hungry in both body and spirit…
I love mornings like this one…
If only I could be still for the whole long short day.
The whir of the fan, curtains drawn, soft light, quietly absorbed in transcribing the stories of my dreams. Breathing them into life.
Someone may read them…perhaps, no one ever will. Either way…it is ok.
How much I take in! Every day…All the time! Even as I sleep I gather notions in the reflection of my nightscape. Gather and tend. Gather and tend. Sometimes it is too much. I cannot hold it all at once.
Some of it falls in the lined pages that hold my thoughts.
Letters slanting to the right, edge to edge becoming words, one beside another until a page is filled and my thought comes round in an ever widening circle.
Do I feel better…that I have taken time to listen.
For a few moments I have stopped the whole busy world, except for my hand.
I give myself over to a thirsty pen, rich with ink, making every last thing bright with possibility!
Some mornings I have a tight grip that fights its way, leaving me with a worn feeling up and down my arm. Those thoughts come painfully. Soreness follows them. Sometimes those are just the sorts of words that need to be written. Some days are like that.
But, this day is soft,
Sky and heart and words…
I don’t know what it will become.
Joyful or crowded or silly…only time will tell.
….the edges are blurred in a lovely disarray that leaves me hopeful.
There is the comfort of listening….to music, to my heart, to that which carries me backwards and forwards and everywhere at once…to take out of nothingness and make something worthy of an eager pen.
Bejo lived more circles than I have ever tried to count…and loved deeply, often unnoticed.
A woman who changed her name when that wasn’t done.
And worked as many hours as they would let her to provide for an extended family during the Great Depression.
A woman so formidable that she had Two birthdays!
To be honest, Bejo was not overly fond of me when I was a child. That was just her way. We came to know each other when I was well grown. Then, she took me into her heart and showed me the depth of herself that she seldom shared. How grateful I am…
Professionally with precision
Advisingly with a sharp tongue
Personally with a woman’s heart
And she did it All without the benefit of the Internet!
She wrote letters longhand
She taught me to write letters longhand
We lived far away from one another for most of my life
She kept my childhood letters
And I kept hers
I have them all now, tucked safely away.
She loved me I think…as I did her…
I often feel her close in spirit
Reminding me…of many things…
So when I pause
to wander my thoughts
and gather brilliant images
to create a new old story
one that I so long to share…she is with me…
another lovely circle coming round in beauty and grace
Write…she dares me…all that you live and love and dream and are…write to me…
I love the way there is magic in the air in the days before Christmas. I love the way people suddenly smile because on my head there are red velvet antlers adorned with tiny bells. I love the way the letter from Francis Church, the editor of The Sun, to little Virginia O’Hanlon fills my heart with believing. I love the way it feels to hold a pen in hand and write to Santa….
Where do you begin when you don’t know where to begin? How do you give a gift to someone you don’t know? It takes me ages to write because I pause often and go back over my words trying to get them just so, for the heart of them to shine through. This early morning with the moon shining and the tree alight nearby I’m simply going to write to you….and try ever so hard not to look back…
Late at night on Christmas Eve I set out a Nativity Tray. It is the last touch of Christmas for me. It is an English medieval custom that I learned about in Sarah Ban Breathnach’s book, Simple Abundance. She states…
“Legend has it that on the night of the Nativity, whosoever ventures out into great snows bearing a succulent bone for a lost and lamenting hound, a wisp of hay for a shivering horse, a warm cloak for a stranded wayfarer, a garland of berries for one who has worn chains, a dish of crumbs for all huddled birds who thought their song was dead, and sweetmeats for little children who peer from lonely windows – whosoever prepares this simply abundant tray, shall be proffered and returned gifts of such an astonishment as will rival the hues of the peacock and the harmonies of heaven.”
So, it is that I quietly gather the best I have to offer and arrange it on my grandmother’s tray. I carry it beneath the stars to set it in its place. I look up into the night sky whether cloudy or clear and send all my love and best wishes to those who rest in my heart…known and unknown.
I have been reading Simple Abundance for so many years that the cover is worn from handling. There are dated pencil marks all through it, notes I’ve made to myself. Here, the birthday of a friend. There, a date I will never forget. Stars and check marks and all manner of special remembrances.
Sarah’s writing has broadened my world and blessed me over and again. Through her, I discovered one of my favorite books of all time, Gift from the Sea by Anne Morrow Lindbergh. Next is Elizabeth von Arnim. It took me ages to find her book, Elizabeth and Her German Garden, but it was ever so worth it. And I, myself began to write more because of Ms. Ban Breathnach’s encouragement. She and I have never met as authors and readers so seldom do. Nevertheless, she has become a beautiful part of my days.
Bo is my lost and lamenting hound. He arrived on Christmas morning a few years ago, hungry and alone…searching… He found my Nativity tray. He devoured everything that was edible and a few bits that weren’t. Then he dashed by the window and I thought – what was that?! I bundled up against the cold and went out to see… there was Bo. He came to my side and has never left.
There are so many inspiring thoughts in my heart this morning. There is the girl I don’t know. I heard her story a few days ago and quickly found myself at her age in it. I did only a small thing for her that was in my grasp to do. There are those who won’t be given the time off that their loving efforts deserve. There are those who at the moment have not and cannot for themselves. There are those who help them. There are those who have lost and there are who are lost. And, of course there are the little ones.
I find myself in each of them… Although I have not traveled their path, I have been in so many of those places.
Have you ever read Cannery Row by John Steinbeck? Have you ever donned your best dress to deliver chicken soup….lived in unlivable spaces….gone silent with wondering….captured a kazillion frogs….tried a beer milkshake….been surprised by a poem…have you?
I was so intrigued by the beer milkshake that I couldn’t stand it. I had to try it! I wouldn’t want a steady diet of them but all in all, not bad really. Even now…I recall turning the page and there was the ancient love poem…Black Marigolds. It was new to me. I was mesmerized…
What I really love about the story is this, that there are so many ways to Be in this world. They all look different and that’s ok. Steinbeck does the telling of it far more justice than I do. You should read him for yourself.
I was afraid to come here. WordPress, that is. I have no experience with social media. I have never been on Facebook or twitter or anything else. So, I was very unsure of this unknown space, the ways of it and those who share it.
I had a terrible time trying to decide on what to name my site…and then, what was ok to write on it! Along came your kindness and your welcoming of me…my heart was touched. It was so hard for me to imagine that anyone would care to read my thoughts. But there you were, reading anyway.
And here entered the world of comments and emojis which I confess, were another stumbling block for me. You may not realize it but, I take as much care with my comments and my thank you’s as with my posting. I want you to know how much your time and thought mean to me. I’m certain I mess up plenty. Each time I hope to do better, to get it right….
This place has become a gift to me, as much as The Little Prince or Gift from theSea or Sarah Ban Breathnach, one that I could never have imagined for myself. You are a beautiful part of my days with pencil marks of remembrance in the margins. You show me all the faces of kindness. You broaden my horizons. You encourage me to write. You inspire me…you touch my heart and I am humbly grateful.
Tonight, I will carefully prepare the tray as I always do. I’ll carry it quietly to its place. I will gaze into the night sky whether cloudy or clear…into the lovely heart of nowhere…and I will send my love and best wishes to you…even now my thoughts turn to that moment and I am mesmerized…
Wherever you are and whatever you celebrate know that my thoughts are with you for peace and joy in all things in all your days.