Thursday, August 21, 2014

Beyond choices

Too many people forcing me to choose:
This chair or that -- do I face left, or right? 
This color or that: will I vote red, or blue?
This bucket -- is it half empty or half full?
This either/or polarity, creating false alternatives,
divides us from the whole, and narrows vision.
When will we learn to look beyond
and come to see the whole that lies beneath?

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Something sang here

There is no place in existence that ever became sacred
until something sang there, even be it just a molecule.
That is enough.
I hear they croon all the time.

-- Hafiz

Tuesday, August 19, 2014


These words you see here, falling off the page;
these thoughts, now tipping slowly into the abyss;
these stiff opinions, backbone of the piece,
look harmless now, but in the night they build
coarse boxes in my head, 
(excluding or including? -- you decide),
each box a judgment, constant commentary:
yes this, no that; you're in, he's out;
you're right, she's wrong;
you're not enough, it's not enough,
there's not enough, and never will be.
They're only words, and yet they have such power to divide...

Monday, August 18, 2014

What treasures

What treasures the sand holds
for those who take the time to look.
What treasures each moment holds
for those who make the time to notice.
What treasures each life holds
for those who sink their toes
into every single moment
and live.

Sunday, August 17, 2014

Going with the flow

Yesterday we left home around 3:15 to catch the 3:50 ferry to Seattle, planning to stop for some art supplies on our way to a gallery opening in Kirkland. We were warned that the ferries were running behind schedule -- something that rarely happens here -- but we took advantage of the extra wait time to grab a lemonade and a cookie from the ferry lemonade stand. So that was good.

In reality the ferry was more like half an hour late, so when we got into the city we decided not to stop for art supplies and just headed straight for the gallery. We found a perfect parking spot despite the crowds (Saturday evening in downtown Kirkland can be very lively), but it had a 30 minute limit. So we spent a marvelous half hour chatting with my two friends whose work was being celebrated and drinking in their glorious amazing paintings, and then left town and went to a favorite Thai restaurant in Issaquah, where we used to live (the food was delicious, as always, and we pretty much had the restaurant to ourselves). So that was good.

After dinner we discovered there were not one but TWO art supply stores just around the corner, so I got to pick up my supplies after all -- plus some beautiful new shades of blue paint (inspired by the paintings I'd just seen.) So THAT was GREAT!

And then we headed for the ferry dock, thinking we'd catch the 8:10 ferry back. We were running a little late, but luckily so was the ferry, so that was good. We made it in plenty of time -- only to learn that actually the ferry was running not 30 but 50 minutes late. But the sun was setting, they had turned on the lights on the the Great Wheel, the Sunset Cruise sailboat was crossing the Sound and heading home for the evening, and I had remembered to bring my camera. So that was good, too!

In the end our brief visit to the show turned into a much longer outing than we had planned -- we finally arrived home a little after 10 pm, and our animals were desperate for food -- but in fact it was a glorious day, and my dreams were filled with paintings and golden light. So that, too, was good -- and I'm so grateful we were feeling flexible enough to adapt our plans with every little shift that came along.  I'm not always that gracious when things don't go my way; it felt amazingly peaceful to just relax and go with the flow...

Saturday, August 16, 2014

Letting go

Richard Rohr tells us
"All great spirituality is about letting go."
So -- what is it that you need to cast off today?

Friday, August 15, 2014

Blessed fog

When I was in college in New England, I loved foggy days; I always felt like I had the campus to myself.  Some 40 years later I still appreciate the peacefulness of fog, but for different reasons. I love the way fog reduces distractions -- both visual and audible -- so that what you do hear and see stands out in a field of gray, of silence. It's a bit like the peace I find in meditation: the constant noise of surrounding thoughts is softened and faded, so that what needs to be seen, heard, or understood shines forth...