Tag Archive | Magic

Presence

thestoryofrain

It’s been almost a month since I posted last, my mother’s 78th birthday is this coming Saturday, and I’ll bring cupcakes for a (hopefully) candlelit vigil that day at dusk.

Already moving through month 3 without her presence, and for the most part I try not to dwell in the sad places in my mind. I talk to her a lot. Eventually I’ll allow myself to think more, probably to cry more (it’s there, I just don’t want to get started because I’m never sure when I’ll stop), but for now I have the conversations with her that I didn’t have when she was here. As my friend Diane says, “there is presence even in absence.”

It’s October, the month when the veil between our worlds, Mom’s and mine, thins a little. That belief comforts me.

Monday’s Child

I was born on a Monday and I always love it when my birthday falls on a Monday. Just finished the cake with my sweetie, my dad and my daughter here. My mom’s down the street, probably enjoying the cake I sent home to her with my dad. 9:09PM another year turns for me. I love that my birthday month is the same month as the Jewish New Year. There’s lots of love going around on a birthday if we are fortunate. I am.

Cork Love

The lyrics from Sinead Lohan’s song “No Mermaid” have been running through my head for a while. So I googled it and imagine my surprise and delight to find out she’s from Cork City. One more reason to be proud of my rebel Irish roots. My revolutionary American roots are a whole ‘nother story.

No Mermaid by Sinead Lohan
We went down to the edge of the water
You were afraid to go in
You said there might be sharks out there in the ocean
And I said i’m only going for a swim

I was swimming around in a circle
I wasn’t always in view
You said we might get into red flag danger
And I am alone when i’m not with you

But I am no mermaid
I am no mermaid
And I am no fisherman’s slave
I am no mermaid
I am no mermaid
I keep my head above the waves

We were swinging from the centre of the ceiling
You were afraid to give in
I said I know i’ll always live for this feeling
And you closed your eyes you said never again

We were dancing in the middle of the desert
You said we’ll burn under the hot sun
I said i’d rather be the colour of pleasure
Than watch like you from under the thumb

But I am no mermaid
I am no mermaid
And I am no fisherman’s slave
I am no mermaid
I am no mermaid
I keep my head above the waves

We went down to the edge of the water
You were afraid to go in
You said there might be sharks out there in the ocean
And I said i’m only going for a swim

I was living around in a circle
I wasn’t always in view
You said we might get into red flag danger
And I am alone when I’m not with you

But I am no mermaid
I am no mermaid
And I am no fisherman’s slave
I am no mermaid
I am no mermaid
I keep my head above the wave

*sigh* she writes and sings so beautifully. I hope I am not infringing on her copyright by posting her lyrics.

Dishes by Candlelight

We’ve talked about putting a dishwasher in our new old house. The kitchen’s quirky with old cupboards and other features we’d like to keep so we’re leaning to no dishwasher. Or should I say no electric powered, automatic dishwasher. Like my dad used to love to quip when people asked if my mother had a dishwasher, “she has four!” In our case, there will be two, Marty and me, and maybe an unsuspecting guest we might possibly recruit.

We have a window over the kitchen sink and I plan on creating artsy wild bits in our yard, so we’ll have a pleasant view when dish washing. I’m also going to try washing dishes by candlelight. Maybe listen to an audio book. Last spring during a power outage, my Baltimore sister-in-law washed dishes by candlelight for about a week, and found herself enjoying doing the dishes. Candlelight can transform an otherwise tedious or mundane experience into something more special — contemplative, meditative — and in the interests of slowing down and savoring more everyday moments, I am going to give it a go. Just don’t know about the audiobook if there’s a power outage. Might have to learn to use my iPod, or learn to enjoy the wondrous quiet of an evening.

Teachers

At least one more teacher coming for the retreat, possibly two. Gathering teachers is not as easy as it sounds.

That’s been one of the hardest parts for me, besides the marketing. While I am definitely a people person, marketing is not my strong point. Selling, you know? I can sell when there’s no pressure, nothing at stake (my pride, definitions of success and so on). I can sell what I love that someone else has made, but not when it’s my own. It’s that struggle with ego and when to toot your own horn, when no one’s even heard it to begin with! But I’m excited to think the final pieces of the teacher puzzle are coming into place.

This process has taught me how much work is involved putting one of these things together — even a wee one like BEAR. I have tremendous respect for the herculean effort Elizabeth puts into Squam. It boggles my mind. When I saw five retreats listed on her site the other day, I gasped — and then clicked on her staff page which brought a big smile — just little ol’ her and Peg! How can you not love someone who dreams so big?

I believe in spirit guides, in the energy of a place and in the energy of beings gone before us — where so of and of whom we channel through our own existence and actions. Miss Alice Mable Bacon and Mrs. Mary Alice Armstrong are very much alive in Elizabeth MacCrellish. When she referred to her climb up Rattlesnake when all was said and done the other day and she saw a sign she’s never noticed on previous climbs, that’s when I knew.

“To the Aborigines, geography is memory. Every mile sings, every mountain speaks of their ancestors’ journeys. Nothing is irrelevant, nothing is lost to death. All things partake of life’s spirit and vitality, the land is vigorously alive, unseen forces flourish, and all have a special site (or Dreaming Place) that is a spiritual home for them and their ancestors.”
~ from my current bedside book, Deep Play by Diane Ackerman, one of my favorite authors.

** image from my heaven on earth, Owl’s Head, Groton State Forest, Vermont