The call of the wild

Hello to all who follow my ramblings, I would like to say thank you and also wish you good things in your life during this new year, a momentous one I suspect.

For me I want to live in abundance in all things, in life, in love, in spirit, in creativity, in health, in grace, in courage and above all in my wildness.  The latter is so important to us all, for with this we can reach our true potential. My wildness can cause sparks to fly, to love with immense passion, it can steer me of course sometimes with hard lessons learnt but it has enabled me to find my true instinctual and intuitive self and believe in her!

I love these words by Clarissa Pinkola Estes,  they just might inspire you, I hope so………………….

The way to maintain one’s connection
to the wild
is to ask yourself
what is it that you want.

One of the most important discriminations
we can make in this matter
is the difference between things that beckon to us
and things that call from our souls.

We choose a thing because
it just happened to be beneath
our noses at that moment in time.
It is not necessarily what we want,
but it is interesting,
and the longer we gaze at it,
the more compelling it becomes.

When we are connected
to the instinctual self,
to the soul of the feminine
which is natural and wild,
then instead of looking over
whatever happens to be on display,
we say to ourselves,

“What am I hungry for?”
Without looking at anything outwardly,
we venture inward and ask,
“What do I long for?
What do I wish for now?
What do I crave?
What do I desire?
For what do I yearn?”

It takes spirit,
will,
and soulfulness
and it often means……….
holding out for what one wants.

 

King of the forest

“All that is gold does not glitter,
Not all those who wander are lost;
The old that is strong does not wither,
Deep roots are not reached by the frost.From the ashes a fire shall be woken,
A light from the shadows shall spring;
Renewed shall be blade that was broken,
The crownless again shall be king.” —

Oak tree image taken on a recent walk

A cousin to the swan?

My day at the office over, a warm evening beckoned………….  Home? No, corner shop for some bread and off to the park, and the beautiful lake to feed the ducks, or should I say the geese!  Eager, they wouldn’t leave me alone, pecking my trousers, my bag, couldn’t get the bread out of the bag quick enough,

White geese, nursery rhymes, childhood, play and laughter, cousin to the swan Louisa May Alcott said

She knew she was not nightingale, 
Yet spite of much abuse, 
She longed to help and cheer the world,

Although a plain gray goose. 

She could not sing, she could not fly, 
Nor even walk with grace, 
And all the farm-yard had declared 
A puddle was her place.

But something stronger than herself 
Would cry, ‘Go on, go on!’ 
Remember, though an humble fowl, 
You’re cousin to a swan.”


Some say that The goose exemplifies a call to the spiritual quest, particularly in its migration patterns and behaviors. The geese leaving in the autumn stirs our imagination and makes us want to search out new worlds and dimensions. Their incessant honking seems to be calling us to follow them on the great spiritual quest. Their return speaks of the fulfilled promises that great quests bring.

Mary Olive wrote this beautiful poem `’Wild Geese”

You do not have to be good.

You do not have to walk on your knees
 for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.

You only have to let the soft animal of your body 
love what it loves.

Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.

Meanwhile the world goes on.

Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain are moving across the landscapes, 
over the prairies and the deep trees, 
the mountains and the rivers.
 Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, 
are heading home again.
 Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, 
the world offers itself to your imagination, 
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting — 
over and over announcing your place 
in the family of things.

The goose also is a totem of communication, especially through the use of stories. Its feather for a long time was the standard writing instrument. Individuals wishing to write can facilitate the process by working with the goose as a totem. It will stimulate the imagination and help move you through creative blocks. Writing with a goose quill pen will help this even more.

It was a perfect evening………………….

Touches my heart

I came across this poem this morning.  Searching for a quote to send to someone, I have  a folder with poems and quotes and I found the  E. E. Cummings poem that always touches me quite profoundly when I read it.

Recently for a storytelling session I was asked to write a story,  it wasnt until I read the poem again this morning I realised the story and the poem had great similarities.

Thought I would share this with you this morning.

 

SOMEWHERE I HAVE NEVER TRAVELLED

somewhere i have never travelled, gladly beyond

any experience, your eyes have their silence:

in your most frail gesture are things which enclose me,

or which i cannot touch because they are too near

 

your slightest look easily will unclose me

though i have closed myself as fingers,

you open always petal by petal myself as Spring opens

(touching skilfully, mysteriously) her first rose

 

or if your wish be to close me, i and

my life will shut very beautifully, suddenly,

as when the heart of this flower imagines

the snow carefully everywhere descending;

 

nothing which we are to perceive in this world equals

the power of your intense fragility: whose texture

compels me with the colour of its countries,

rendering death and forever with each breathing

 

(i do not know what it is about you that closes

and opens; only something in me understands

the voice of your eyes is deeper than all roses)

nobody, not even the rain, has such small hands

 

E E Cummings

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Guest House

The following poem just says it all for me.  It took a long time find the place of acceptance of “what is” in life.  Once tasted I realised the answer to  living with that elusive ” inner peace” was trying to achieve acceptance in all areas of my life and day to day life’s challenges.

Whatever life brings up for us, know that its arisen because we have something to learn from it, learn to see the gifts in all and every situation.

The poem is by RUMI, the famous Sufi poet who died in 1273; he states very clearly just what I am trying to say, he says it far more eloquently than I ever could,

THE GUEST HOUSE

This being human is a guest house.

Every morning a new arrival.

A joy, a depression, a meanness,

some momentary awareness comes

As an unexpected visitor.

Welcome and entertain them all!

Even if they’re a crowd of sorrows,

who violently sweep your house

empty of its furniture,

still treat each guest honorably.

He may be clearing you out

for some new delight.

The dark thought, the shame, the malice,

meet them at the door laughing,

and invite them in.

Be grateful for whoever comes,

because each has been sent

as a guide from beyond.

RUMI
Oblivious – detail – Carol Gearing

Black or white, life or death

Questions, questions, in my head questions…………… there are black ones and white ones, these are easily answered, short one word answers, yes or no, live or die, but its those murky grey ones, the ones that lie in the seemingly unconscious that just sometimes flicker like a naked flame, seem bright and ripe for life.  These are the difficult ones, for just as I am about to pluck them they diminish, in to the gloom they banish themselves, unanswered floating in the void.  Are these the ones that need to die, or are they the ones that will give me the answer that I never tire of the search……….

The image here is one of my pencil drawings made into a repeating pattern, one of black and white, life and death,  one must have many deaths in order to give birth to new growth

The following quote is one I repeat very often

“What must I give more death to today, in order to generate more life?

What do I know should die, but am hesitant to allow to do so?

What must die in me in order for me to love?

What not-beauty do I fear? Of what use is the power of the not-beautiful to me today?

What should die today? What should live? What life am I afraid to give birth to?

If not now, when?

Clarissa Pinkola Estes

Be wild, be free, be stone stupid and be all three !!

I recently came back from teaching a workshop about the Hero’s Journey, using the Major Arcana cards to reveal the epic path.   this quote I plucked from one of my most favourite books just about said it all.

“Be wild; that is how to clear the river. The river does not flow in polluted, we manage that. The river does not dry up, we block it. If we want to allow it its freedom, we have to allow our ideational lives to be let loose, to stream, letting anything come, initially censoring nothing. That is creative life. It is made up of divine paradox. To create one must be willing to be stone stupid, to sit upon a throne on top of a jackass and spill rubies from one’s mouth. Then the river will flow, then we can stand in the stream of it raining down.”

Clarissa Pinkola Estes (Women Who Run with the Wolves: Contacting the Power of the Wild Woman)

also see www.livingenergyhealer.com

I will not die an unlived life

Hot pinks and reds are favourites at the moment, love the vibrant energy waves these colours emit.  Have been playing at patterns again, this one is from a drawing that I illustrated a poem with.  A beautiful poem that touched my soul and forms the essence of my being.

I will not die an unlived life.

I will not live in fear

of falling or catching fire.

I choose to inhabit my days,

to allow my living to open me,

to make me less afraid,

more accessible;

to loosen my heart

until it becomes a wing,

a torch, a promise.

I choose to risk my significance,

to live so that which came to me as seed

goes to the next as blossom,

and that which came to me as blossom,

goes on as fruit.

by Dawna Markova

Flickr: Your Photostream.

The Frog by Hillaire Belloc

A priceless ode to Billy Bandyknees – especially for my dear friend Seanpaul whos frogs appear in the image and were my inspiration for this blog

Selected verses from
The Bad Child’s Book of Beasts

    Be kind and tender to the Frog,
    And do not call him names,
    As “Slimy skin,” or “Polly-wog,”
    Or likewise “Ugly James,”
    Or “Gap-a-grin,” or “Toad-gone-wrong,”
    Or “Bill Bandy-knees”:
    The Frog is justly sensitive
    To epithets like these.
    No animal will more repay
    A treatment kind and fair;
    At least so lonely people say
    Who keep a frog (and, by the way,
    They are extremely rare).

by Hillaire Belloc

Persephone

`playing with a ball of clay this afternoon, cant believe she appeared, a sense of real strength sprung from my  fingers, she feels so free,  so free its scary,  there is  a part of me thats down with Persephone ………….

Addendum:  I just realised that I went to see Julia Cameron speak (artists way book) the previous day, it was quite challenging and bought up a lot of childhood images, I see  now my “form” is my unconscious self that is bursting  to get out.  There is nothing to be afraid of.

Prayer to Persephone

Be to her, Persephone,
All the things I might not be:
Take her head upon your knee.
She that was so proud and wild,
Flippant, arrogant and free,
She that had no need of me,
Is a little lonely child
Lost in Hell,—Persephone,
Take her head upon your knee:
Say to her, “My dear, my dear,
It is not so dreadful here.”
Edna St. Vincent Millay

Flickr: Your Photostream.

From the Inside Looking Out

From the inside looking out DSC_1021This is my piece of the world, the piece I look out onto every single day.  This is the piece of my world that tells me all is as it should be.

What does your world look like?  I guess very different to mine?  Even if it was the same, maybe you’re my neighbour? …………………. Our world view would still be very different because it’s not just what we see that shapes our worlds, it’s our own individual life filter that we perceive the world through that shapes our perception.

 

‘Struggling souls catch light from other souls who are fully lit and willing to show it’,

Clarissa Pinkola Estes

When A Good Mother Sails From This World


Mending the Sails by Joaquín Sorolla y BastidaAlthough Mothers Day here in the UK bas been and gone, my mother, as always, is ever present in my mind.  

This year for the first time I was able visit her grave with my daughter and feel that I had at last come to terms with her death, felt that just like the libretto below, that I too had managed to weave together the threads of  her light into a  beautiful set of sails.  This beautiful boat with its magnificent rigging is majestically riding the waves and atop is the beautiful red flag of my mother. 

when I read this piece it took my breath away, it spoke to me in so many ways and confirmed  just what I have been feeling.  My mother will always be with me, wherever I travel, her spirit and love lives deep within my soul.  

WHEN A GOOD MOTHER SAILS FROM THIS WORLD

The following piece is actually an excerpt from women.life.song a libretto written by Dr Clarissa Pinkola Estes, commissioned and performed by Jessaye Norman in 2000 at Carnegie Hall.  

When I say, ‘My mother has died’,
I mean my ‘most beloved’.
Leave me to myself now,
for I am a ship who’s
lost her riggings;
suddenly
come unmoored.

My mother has died;
She has earned her rest now,
waiting only, and proudly so,
for her sails
to be taken down.

I, the daughter,
see to the mending of my mother’s sails;
I seek her
worn and broken
threads of light,
reweaving her dazzling linen.

And though there be broken threads
not able to be rewoven,
I will gently pull the edges together
and stitch one side to the other…
and if not able to be mended,
then I will patch with parts
from my own most earnest life
over the places where my mother’s life
was worn through,
. . . or never was.

Over time, the sails of the mothership
will be fitted to the daughtership;
raised up on the mainsail,
and the final touch –
the red ragged flag – hers –
will be flying topmast of my ship.

I’ll be let down into the waters then,
I, the daughter, will glide again…
but this time, under the best sails
inherited from my mother…
and all the mothers of the motherlines
before her.

Ay, Mother, let me tell you
my treasured dearie-dear,
one last thing I have learned
from your spirit passing through me
as sparkling shadow passes
through darkening shadow,
on this open night-sea journey…

I am learning to navigate
by the mysteries of the farthest stars –
the ones that the great wake of your passing
has revealed to me
for the very first time.



 

Dr Clarissa Pinkola Estes