Friday, November 12, 2010

A man found a cocoon of a Spicebush Swallowtail Butterfly. He took it home so that he could watch the Butterfly come out of the cocoon. On the day a small opening appeared, he sat and watched the Butterfly for several hours as the Butterfly struggled to force the body through that little hole.
Then it seemed to stop making any progress. It appeared as if it had gotten as far as it could and it could go no farther. It just seemed to be stuck. Then the man, in his kindness, decided to help the Butterfly, so he took a pair of scissors and snipped off the remaining bit of the cocoon. The Butterfly then emerged easily. But it had a swollen body and small, shriveled wings. The man continued to watch the Butterfly because he expected that, at any moment, the wings would enlarge and expand to be able to support the body, which would contract in time. Neither happened! In fact, the little Butterfly spent the rest of its life crawling around with a swollen body and shriveled wings. It never was able to fly.
What the man in his kindness and haste did not understand was that the restricting cocoon and the struggle required for the Butterfly to get through the tiny opening was the way of forcing fluid from the body of the Butterfly into its wings so that it would be ready for flight once it achieved its freedom from the cocoon. Freedom and flight would only come after the struggle. By depriving the Butterfly of a struggle, he deprived the Butterfly of health.

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

This is how the map gets drawn and I am able to make my way:

Much as a man cannot have two masters,
A woman cannot have two map-makers
My topography is my own
Hills and valleys that only I can name

leading hands, nudges
urge and prod
Putting pebbles in my shoes

My spirit has a strategy

I am not responsible for what my spirit's strategy makes you feel

Sunday, August 29, 2010

On Relationships

While I may the kind who finds solace, cradled in the arms of an old Oak tree and I may be the sort who prefers being kissed by moonbeams and merry breezes. Though I may be more concerned with being free to be free, being held in the arms of the benevolent Fates and open at the ready to find myself on the move. It is undoubtedly a thing of beauty to see the happiness that finding a sacred mirror can bring. So to those who've found each other, like clouds parting to reveal a sea of stars, I bless you from my unconventional heart...

Love one another enough to fiercely guard each other's solitude is how Rilke once put it and I agree. Never lose yourselves through the looking glass but find a greater understanding of your own glowing souls through having the reflection. Remember that it is a sacred trust to know the soul of another and never take this lightly for within your lover there is a light. Accept everything and never ever try to own, change or chastise the other's path. And know more than anything, that sometimes, the best you can do is to allow for the truth...

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

For The Lover Who Once Asked: This Is Why There Are So Many Flaming Hoops...

Thanks to Arjuna Ardagh for this magical piece:

"Many many years ago, I went to Bali for a vacation, on my own. I met up with some other young travelers there and we hired a Jeep to take us on a tour of the island. We drove up right to the highest point of the island, where Tourists don't usually go. Our guide took us to one of the most sacred temples. It was surrounded by a big brick wall with an ornate entrance. After removing our shoes and wrapping scarves around our heads, we stepped together through this entrance. Inside, there was a short courtyard and then another brick wall with another entrance. After more preparations of lighting incense and giving offerings, we stepped through the second entrance. We were allowed to go through the opening in one more wall, but that was it. All together there were ten walls around the deity in the middle. Hindus could go beyond the fourth wall. Devotees of that particular deity could go beyond the fifth wall, and so it went on. The only people allowed to approach the deity directly were those who had given their lives completely and totally to its worship. Everyone else could come a little closer, a little closer, to the innermost beauty, but not all the way to the center.

I'm not a big believer of the worship of statues, but there's a beautiful symbolism to what I saw there, because a woman's heart is just like that. At the essence of every woman's heart is the divine feminine. It contains everything that has ever been beautiful, or lovely, or inspiring, in any woman, anywhere, at any time. The very essence of every woman's heart is the peak of wisdom, the peak of inspiration, the peak of sexual desirability, the peak of soothing, healing love. The peak of everything. But it's protected, for good reason, by a series of concentric walls. To move inwardly from one wall to the next requires that you intensify your capacity to devotion, and as you do so, you are rewarded with Grace. This is not something you can negotiate verbally with a woman. She doesn't even know consciously how to open those gates herself. They are opened magically and invisibly by the keys of worship.

If you stand on the outside of the outermost wall, all you have available to you, like many other unfortunate men, is pornography. For $1.99 a minute, you can see her breasts, maybe her vagina, and you can stimulate yourself in a sad longing for deeper love.

Step through another gate, and she will show you her outer gift-wrapping. She'll look at you with a certain twinkle in her eye. She'll answer your questions coyly. She'll give you just the faintest hint that there is more available.

Step through another gate with your commitment, with your attention, with the small seedlings of devotion, and she'll open her heart to you more. She'll share with you her insecurities, the way that she's been hurt, her deepest longings. Some men will back away at this point. They realize that the price they must pay to go deeper is more than they are willing to give. They start to feel a responsibility. But for those few who step though another gate, they come to discover her loyalty, her willingness to stick with you no matter what, her willingness to raise your children, stick up for you in conversation, and, if you are lucky, even pick up your dirty socks now and then. And so it goes on. You've got the gist by now.

Somewhere around the second wall from the center, she casts the veils of her personality aside, and shows you that she is both a human being and also a portal into something much greater than that. She shows you a wrath that is not hers, but all women's. She shows you a patience that is also universal. She shows you her wisdom. At this point you start to experience the archetypes of women, who have been portrayed as goddesses and mythological figures in every tradition.

Then, at the very center, in the innermost temple itself, all the layers of your devotion are flooded with reward all at once. You discover the very essence of the feminine, and in a strange way that is not exactly romantic, but profoundly sacred all the same, you realize that you could have got here with any woman if you had just been willing to pass through all the layers of initiation. Any woman is every woman, and every woman is any woman at the same time. When you love a woman completely, at the very essence of her being, this is the one divine feminine flame. It is what has made every woman in history beautiful. It's the flame behind the Mona Lisa, and Dante's Beatrice, and yes, also Penelope Cruz and Heidi Klum. You discover the magic ingredient which has lead every man to fall in love with a woman.

When you learn how to pay attention to the essence of the feminine in this way, you fall to the floor in full body prostration, tears soaking your cheeks and clothes, and you wonder how you could have ever taken Her, in all of Her forms, for granted even for a second."

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Houses of The Holy...

Recently one of my dear friends posed a brilliant question in asking, "What takes the place of all of the oil that has been extracted from the earth?" This for me conjured images of grapes turning to raisins, things caving in and lush things wilting.

May we never forget that this is our only home, we have nowhere else to go. We are fortunate to have the continued embrace of this planet despite our dysfunctional relationship with it. Gaia continues to invite us back to her sacred temple, offer us her grounding and soothing influences, welcome us like prodigal sons and daughters regardless of our continued hubris, neglect and collectively sanctioned harming.

May we remember that the intention for our relationship with the earth was not that of "other" but of "one". As a child feeding from its mother and not perceiving any distance or difference, we were offered this opportunity to cultivate relationship with Earth Mother. In the name of convenience we have created distance, prisons for ourselves and prisons for our brothers and sisters of the land and animal kingdoms. We have enslaved those who offer us only continued embrace and we have forgotten the magic that once existed between us.

Now is the time, the winds whisper for us to remember our heritage. Now is the time to rise up and journey with gentleness using weapons of love and education to effect change. May we harness our gifts and our voices to advocate for those who cannot speak but who continue to support us with the most unconditional of loves.

We have a responsibility as masterful communicators, builders and bringers of change to remember our role as servants of the earth and to understand that it has been with compassion that our perceived control has been permitted. May we be humble and remember the first time we saw the vast expanse of the ocean and our smallness in comparison. May we not awaken the wolf mother within our dear benevolent planet but seek only to help her lick her wounds. Now is the time to exercise our love and to harness our healing for all that is. Just as your body is home for your Spirit, Gaia is home for your body. May we all strive to offer the best of ourselves in service to these sacred temples.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Bright Fire...

"You used to be wild here. Don't let them tame you."- Isadora Duncan

Those of us born under fire signs (Aries, Leo, Saggittarius) have a natural affinity to passion, creativity, virility, rebelliousness, enthusiasm (we can also be hot-headed, tempestuous and a bit out of control). This fire energy is available to all of us natural fire sign or otherwise. For some fire may need to be cultivated, for others it may need to harnessed.

According to Aristotle fire occupies a place between earth and air in the elemental realm. In this way I see fire as a connection between our grounded state of humanity and our connection to Spirit. Fire speaks to our primal connection to our truth, our passion, the qualities within and externally that are worth fighting for.

I am here today to speak to the need to couple our compassion, our heart-centred awakeness with a fire to effect change, a fire to liberate others, a fire to remember our essence and to not be tamed by the mundane world. I am writing today to pay homage to Prometheus who stole fire from the Gods to create light for the human world but was then punished for his kindness, to remember Hekate the fire-bearer, to speak of Agni the ever youthful fire God who accepts and purifies our sacrifices. I am here to honour Archangel Michael, the winds of the South, Tigers, Dragons, Hawks and the beautiful Phoenix who reminds us of our own transformative powers. May we never forget a time when light was not available at the flip of a switch, when we used to cultivate fire to warm us, to purify our food, to light our darkness, to create community circles and to remind us simply by being of our connection to our own passions. May we remember this relationship and our ability to create light and warmth for ourselves through fire. Today on Beltane, let us honour fire and remember that we are called to remember, to honour those who have come before us and to carry wisdom to our children's children...

Wednesday, January 20, 2010


Small savage moments of cells dividing and digging through lost and found
find a soul that you recognize as belonging.

Bravest of all human quality is hope.
Bukowski's mother smiles
being knocked down, goldfish dying.
I agree.

Time to let the sleeping raven top
open wings,
shake the dusty rug of secrets off its back
like dancing
carrying the message out into the green world.

I haven't been sleeping,
channeling Tiresias
sight blindness,
comforting duality
preferring song-birds to ceaseless chatter.

winged things escape the burden of rational thought
My heart is like Franny's
wish, need, gratitude, platitude
ceaselessly meets the ancestors,
through veins, heartbeat, breath and longing.
small St. Francis refuge
communing with woods, wings, always...

Ironic saint,
drawn mystical.
candle, window, open sky, beating wings, song
trance's daydream...
more than touch and feel.

my very own bluebird can never find quiet and I'm happy...