Thursday, February 13, 2014

Angel DNA

No, says the angel, and Shhhhh... There is no need for tears, though they are beautiful and can be loved. Drops of glass refracting light. You teach yourself the lesson again: "Everything not fully suffered, not fully resolved [comes] again: the same sorrows [are] suffered over and over." 

Ask yourself, she says, Ask yourself the question. So I do. And in doing so, I have beckoned it. The answer rises like a wave--a wave nearly identical to the ones that have been dragging their bellies over this reef for a lifetime, before standing up and bowing to the sand. To the stone.

It is as clear as day, as clear as night: There is no roof under which I need to station myself, no shelter I should seek from the beauty and worth of stars. Easy is not best--why should I begin to believe otherwise now? I choose the way that speaks to me of a well-chosen journey, of the kind of independence I have always garnered, and of the million names I might give to a single shape on the horizon.

The angel settles herself among feathers and tulle, lets a smile curl the edges of her lips, where she wears her approval. Where she reflects the heredity I carry in my genes. Where she looks exactly like me.

Monday, February 10, 2014

Emergency Flotation...

Three doors open, two click shut again before her heart has even absorbed the joy that was building around it. Collection of sighs and affirmations become homeless in the space of two emails. Such a fine line between what the heart imagines and what it can actually contain.

Left to swim in uncertainty again, she puts a hand on a nearby piece of driftwood and extends her arms and legs as she knows to do in a swiftly (or slowly) moving current. She fills her lungs with air and believes in her own buoyancy. Lets the water kiss an oval frame around her face as she lifts her eyes skyward again, always on the lookout for the truth that might spell itself against the clouds overhead.

She thinks of Ophelia, singing her snatches of old tunes, but only as a passing expression of despair--Ophelia sinks in the fidelity of the story, but not she--she rises, her garments fanning around her like pale wings. There is gratitude here. She immerses herself in it again, lets the thoughts of her love, her boys, her friends, her family swirl into the negative spaces of her body against this mottled blue. She surrenders to it.

Lungs fill with air, push sternum to the surface. Ribs are a sweet little cage for the pulsing aspirations of a seeker. A lover. A writer. A teacher. This soul straining heavenward, asking the question again and again--how? Not why--That is the wrong question, says the angel. But how? Yes, how to be the thing it is in her to be? How to believe. Her willingness is all, and she does know. Knows it will take shape in time. Knows that the softness of her heart is all. Is all.

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Angel Card: Synthesis

Yes. Synthesis. And harmony. Together we can. I never worked well in groups. I was "bossy," my mom told me. And a little controlling. I preferred to work independently. Choose each color, each word, even the arrangement on the page or in the air. And spirituality as a group effort? Never. But now. But now...

Sisterhood, I see, is all. Not just the synthesis of souls, intentions, efforts, but of my own experience, my own gifts and offerings. There is a way to give it all and be left to overflowing. Be a fountain, Kim. Be a fountain.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Loving Jane...

When I think of Jane Kenyon and why I love her so much, though I have only discovered this since she has been gone from the Earth, I am not entirely sure. It seems it would have to do with her language, with the utter purity of her images and the sweet, hymnal intonations of her verse. Of course I first loved her language. What else have I to go on?

I never met her and have only ever corresponded with her husband, who forgives me the fact that his poetry is not my favorite because he knows that the poet whose work holds that position of favor is his late wife. Jane died at 44 when her husband was 66. Now, at 85, he writes back to me in all graciousness, though he is weary and must receive a great deal of mail from people such as myself, wondering about his great art, his great success and, like me, his fabulous wife of 23 years.

Today I read A Hundred White Daffodils and even while I try to read slowly, savor each delectable syllable, I am aware of the dwindling number of Jane's works that remain to be read by me. I will have to start again, from the top, when that happens. For now, I am at a church fair or in a garden. I climb Mount Washington and take the train down--or not.

I am with Jane and it is as if the two years that remain between this moment and the moment I turn 44, her age at her death, are all I have of her. It is a bit eerie to think like this, and I try to understand the source of such a sense, but it is lost in some notion of time and poetry and in an image of wild geese against blue sky.

Sunday, January 26, 2014

From Fear to Affirmation...

"If you do not come too close,
If you do not come too close..." --T.S. Eliot

There is fear here. I am reminded that fear is perhaps the polar opposite of all things edifying. It is crippling. It obscures and hinders. I will not move with fear directing my course.

I still believe in karma. I still believe that if my intention is perfect, good will come of what I do. Good will come of what I create and what I share--and I will reap the rewards of seeds sown in love and beneficence.

Abundance is mine. I open my hands to receive it, while at the same time opening my heart to my purpose. To giving what I can give. To being the thing I was born on this planet to be. 

Tuesday, January 21, 2014

All I Ever Wanted

I look around me, and I realize that I have everything I have ever wanted. It's not at all in the shape I might have imagined (how could I have conceived of this exact thing?), but it's all here. I can always find something to complain about--it's the special propensity of humans, I think--but why? If I look too far forward, there is fear, I must admit. But again--why?

All is provided for today, in this moment, by our perfect intention and our efforts to manifest them in the world and in our lives. By the Divine in us, if you will--what is perfect and light in our imperfect selves. By God, quite simply, though that particular name had begun to feel foreign on my tongue.

In my heart I know that I cannot agree with Confucius when he says that nothing exists until it is named. As a poet, of course, I like the idea, but as a human, a spiritual seeker, I have to admit that my knowing speaks to me of the most profound truth: that which I have called God, Spirit, the Divine, Creator, Source--it (she?) existed long before I spoke the syllables, pushed them around, swapped them out for one another.

Furthermore, that entity, that Perfection, is constant and unaffected by my choice of nomenclature. I live inside of the Divine, and the Divine inside of me. In my best moments, I move according to her voice. Thank you. Thank you. God. Source. Brahma. I am whole. Life is good. In that light I grow, full of gratitude.

When I get impatient to see the fruits of my labor, when I fear that my belief in "good karma" is rather a misguided kind of idealism, I remember the words of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. "All labor that uplifts humanity has dignity and importance and should be undertaken with painstaking excellence." And so I continue to do what I do. I love up my sons, share in their nurturing with my husband. I keep writing. I keep teaching. Keep sharing what I can with those who want what I have to give. Keep looking for the light in every person, believing it's there no matter how deeply buried. Keep hoping to learn, because I know that every single individual I encounter has something to teach me. What else can we do but keep on doing these things?

"So let us not grow weary in doing what is right, for we will reap at harvest time, if we do not give up." --Galations 6:9. Indeed. No 'misguided idealism' here. Just truth. And a reminder to be patient. A reminder to have faith in what I am up to in this life.

Thank you Daily Word for pairing this MLK quote with this verse from the Old Testament Bible. Perfect wisdom for me today. Namaste.

Wednesday, January 15, 2014

To the Woman Who Abused Me on the Phone the Other Night...

Thank you. You opened the door a hair, a crack, and you let the light in. You showed me that I am stronger than I thought. It matters not at all that I cried for some time afterward. It was not for the insults that I cried. Not for believing there was any truth in what you said. Those tears were for cruelty in general--the way people try to hurt one another sometimes. The way it's from hurt itself that such hurting usually issues. Perhaps next time my tears will even be for you, dear woman, tears born purely of my compassion. For now, I let them be nonspecific.

You showed me that, to a greater extent than I thought possible, my ego has dissolved. I know this because no desire for retaliation grew in my heart as you abused me, made convoluted accusations and denied me. I only recognized the fruitlessness of my efforts to communicate and to understand, and I was calm enough to end it. Though you seemed to hold out to me a vehicle for manifesting something I deeply wanted, I ended it. Somehow there was clarity and peacefulness in saying no. And goodbye. I even said "thank you"--twice--hardly knowing the source of my gratitude.

Now I can see clearly the liberation of it all--the moral victory contained in not responding to your attack. But more importantly I see that I have become more powerful than I was before. I was full of grace in that moment. Full of light. Mary would be proud of me. I am proud of me. That I chose not to grasp. That what I heard, I did not receive with my ego and interpret as a reflection of myself. I heard it for what it was: a reflection of someone with whom, for whatever reason, I was not going to be able to connect. Someone who, in spite of my best efforts, was not going to see me.

"Thank you," I said again, voice soft, gentle. And, "Goodbye."

Thursday, January 2, 2014

What I Have to Say to Me

"How do I know what I think until I see what I say?" --E.M. Forster

I decide to "see what I say." I sit down to write. My dog sits, too. I settle into an easy, meditative breath and be still. I know my gypsy heart resists even this moment of stillness. Even this level of stasis. 

In life I commit, at intervals, to putting down roots. I believe it is what my children need. What they want. I believe it is "should." There are times my heart feels it will implode, times that tears surge from somewhere deep within and unknown but unbelievably powerful.

"Eight years is not so long," I say with an out-breath. "I have created this way of learning, this way to grow into a more content, less restless version of myself." Even as I say them, I know these are labels I have learned and which represent societal expectations. But they also represent a belief I hold, or else why would I say them? And then it happens. I speak to me:

This impulse--it doesn't arrive out of discontent. It ends up getting expressed like that sometimes, but that is not its source. The source is a wildness that is utterly pure. A wildness that drives me toward the new, the vibrant, the alive. 

This routine thing--I cannot love it. I will do it. I will do it well. In order to sustain a life I have offered to my sons. But I will not be ashamed of the impulse to go. To fly. To see and know things other.

I don't expect to pass this way again--or if I do, I don't think I will remember this time around. I want to see and know every beautiful thing--every real thing. And I want to do it all with this family I have made with the man I love.

**Inertia for Kindle is FREE TODAY ONLY on Amazon. Click here to get your copy in an instant! HAPPY 2014!