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When nobody whispers the words you long to hear

as you tuck in at night,

you recite them to yourself instead.

You call your fragments home.

You weave them back together,

feeling the emotion held in each one,

settling them with caresses.

The light of the sun follows you

as you descend into the expansive dark within.

The language of your origins rises from the margins.

It tugs at the folds of your mind,

reaches into sealed off heart-channels.

Unshed tears, long-caught in your throat, release.

You awaken to the task of now,

the task of learning to trust your wisdom.

 

Aliveness, herself

Rattlesnake plantain roots and blooms here.

Small, smooth, silver-veined leaves of snakeskin,

nestled into rich humus beneath the shade of red cedar.

Her branches, the warm embrace of mother, of forest-kin.

This mother tree welcomes all of me.

Kingfisher dives dramatically,

rises dripping,

arrows across glacier-fed lake to perch above,

calling in an enchanting rattle–

a warning or a greeting?

A familiar question.

The music of it calls me out of thought-depths,

out of doubt, of fear, out of lostness.

I am called into the senses of body–

this animal of pleasure and pain reclaimed–

known only by these hands,

by this mouth, this nose, these ears,

by this skin, this soul, this spirit, in this time.

Dreams of phantom lovers and mystery-seekers tame loneliness and loss.

Tears of praise fall onto the earth, rising to join gathering clouds.

Prayers whispered to the seedlings, to the fungi, to the ancestors.

Prayers sung from rocky mountain ledges

into the unknown

future taking shape, circling, disappearing from view,

returning transformed on eagle wings.

I vow to cease the mad pursuit of happiness.

I vow to receive and release, freely, all emotion.

I vow to strive, not to be any one thing for too long–

to be instead, all things, in turn.

To be vivid, vibrant, brightness, darkness,

to be aliveness herself.

 

Love through chaos

Our eyes steal glances of beloved, grazing on form and flesh,
translating energy into fantasy.
As the wind belongs to this forest of fir, hemlock and cedar,
your hands belong to the soft slopes of my body,
caressing my cells to whisper, hum, and to moan.
We have known each other
by other names
in other times:
wild shadow-dancer
lakeside star-gazer
moon-tracking tent-dweller
roaring river-rider
hearth-keeper
soul-healer
terrestrial trail-bound lover.
We satiate bodily desires with huckleberries and afternoon swimming–
momentary pleasure quenching.
Great longing spans the distance between our lives.
Longing follows us home.
It fuels our dreams, awakens our senses.
Longing asks us to remember how to love through chaos.

 

Being Claimed

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There is mystery and magic to how we are shaped by place, by landscape, by ecosystem. In my search for connection, I am more often met by the wild than the human. I visited a shoreline of a youthful adventure past. The harbor seals and I exchanged wordless stories about the pleasures of swimming in briny waters, sleeping on sandy shores, and being awash in wave song.

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When I think I may succumb to loneliness,

art saves me, every time,

as does walking to riverside.

Wildlife draws near,

stirring up some kind of magic,

reminding me I am of this earth.

I am rabbit in the meadow at dawn, vanishing elusive.

I am doe at forest’s edge locked in gaze, awareness pure.

I am crow sharpening black beak on river rock.

I am coyote bewildered on noonday city block.

I am midlife she, crouched, one hand upon knee,

one hand in a sacred gesture, relaxed and ready.

In the dream-time season,

the spiral of descent pulls me inward,

a deep breath,

a pulsing path of shadow and light.

I encounter you there in surprise.

Tell me,

are we ourselves?

or, are we reflections of each other?

A Journal Entry

Exploring my edges–the nature and purpose of my boundaries, my sexuality, my creativity…I may have been long familiar with the idea of how human sexuality and creativity are inextricably connected, however, I am learning about this connection in a deeper and more personal way. I am listening to circulating questions, ideas and messaging. I am learning about what it could mean to liberate my love–to liberate the ways that I give and receive love, as well as how I cultivate and express it. And to be clear, while how I choose to share my body with other people is one aspect of my sexuality, it is not the only aspect and I am getting at something much deeper and different than what some may label as a practice of free-love or casual sex. Longing, desire, attraction and pleasure are my teachers. I am becoming conscious of the direct link between my sexuality and my creative impulses, my sexuality and my inspiration, my sexuality and my ability to think in new ways, my ability to deconstruct the social conditioning of the dominant patriarchal, white supremacist, colonial, capitalist culture of war. I am seeing more clearly how the oppression and the repression of sexuality leads to a culture of fear, shame, mental illness and violence. It leads to a suppression of creativity and an emphasis on conformity. If I don’t know or believe in my power, if I am detached from the natural force of my unique sexuality, then I am easier to control and less likely to imagine possibilities, less likely to innovate. However, if, and when I connect to the power and the unique expression of my sexuality–to the energetic essence of boundless love and eros that flow through me–then I am more alive, more creative, more agile in imagination, more open to possibility, more likely to overcome and transcend everyday violence–I am more likely to live into my purpose.