~ from cats, dogs and nature to the flowering of body, mind and spirit ~

Saturday, December 22, 2012


Spike has grown fairy flowers -- tiny, yellow, beloved of bees. The five-petal flowers huddle along the edges, between the barbs, protruding from the thin edge rather than the soft center. A delicate display of darlings that arch their backs in the sunshine, open-hearted, and smiling into breath. 

The golden ginger in my tea bites the tip of my tongue like one of the barbs protecting diminutive flowers that often bunch in threes on satin skin, contrast dancing hand-in-hand. 

The flowers speak as one: 

I am the container for the mid-spaces, the nectar of the in-betweens for those rushing edges and intense barbs. I blossom in the middle of extremes, often out on a ledge of vision and inspiration, inhaling every breeze and nuance of color that plummets from the sky or pushes up from the earth as She breathes. My nibs have bloomed in a moment of daring. I offer my soma to the occasional stray bee who has flown off his path seeking something more than the others in his hive. Will he tell others about me? He has to make lots of stops, pausing as he buzzes from one fragile waxen flower to another, picking up bitty amounts of precious pollen one pinhead dot at a time. He flies away but then comes right back ... “just a little more” he says and then gathers. Does he wonder if he will ever get enough? I rest in the peace of offering what I have created, blooming through both dark and light.”

Thursday, December 13, 2012

To Hear into Healing

There is power in listening. There is good in being the best listener possible ... to be open, caring, receptive, accepting, non-judgmental ... to hear the voices into healing. To value the ear, the voices and expressions of all life. To listen. To write what I hear. To share the voices of Gaia. 

Before I can write the truth, mine or anyone/anything else’s, I have to hear it ... through the voices, songs, colors, expressions of joy and pain. Really HEAR the cries and laughter within and without. Listen into Love. Hear into Healing.

Hear the voice of Goddess through Her world, animals, plants. Hear people in what they say but also how they behave ... to see into the hearing of their voice disguised. To allow the voices to flow through me ... to be mirrored or reflected back into the world, slightly shifted to be revealed in a different way, new notes, words that are more articulate for those who cannot speak clearly. Including myself, my own inner voice.

How does it happen that we cease to hear? Is it because we’ve reached a point where everyone is clamoring and so we tune it all out? How did I stop listening that time? What made me stop hearing for a while? Was it because I wanted to be heard? Did I think that if I stopped listening that I would somehow be heard more easily? Did I think that pretending to listen was the same as truly hearing? Or that taking turns in talking automatically means each one is also being heard?

And if that sad confusion happens with people, it’s even easier to comprehend how it can happen among different species and indeed all life. When Gaia speaks softly through a gentle rain in drought or through blooming wildflowers in a field of beans, or through autumn leaves decaying underfoot on a concrete path ... do we listen? Or do we not listen until She begins to cry torrents of tears in hurricane winds and Her bones crack open from mining and fracking? Do we say we’re sorry and do better? Or do we fall back into selfish habits hearing only our own demands of empty grasping because we don’t even listen to our own hearts when they speak of love and kindness toward self and other people?

We can open and truly hear. It’s not a weakness or a waste of time or a distraction. Hearing is healing. 

How many people pay to be listened to? Because they aren’t heard in their jobs or families or lifestyles of hectic to and fro? And even then, how often are they really heard? 

We can be taught how to listen but only the heart knows how to hear ... the words are differentiated by a single letter that holds the space for Truth.

Is the ability to hear the true beginning of sharing? How can I possibly share anything of value if I haven’t heard what the world is saying? If I don’t hear the love and compassion that calls out from within my own heart?

I’ve often been told that I’m a good listener. Looking to past relationships, I was often listening more than speaking. Though, at times, I felt resentful because I felt ‘used’ without my full permission. I allowed others to create the boundaries that often lacked balance. This was on me, not them. They had a need and tried to fill their emptiness by voicing in whatever way they could; my responsibility is to find my own balance.

Speaking is ‘active’ and today’s society is all about the action, the doing. Everyone talking yet few are listening because they’ve burned out and finally the listeners need to be heard as well! The listeners, like the introverts (often one and the same), are not valued. 

And so we find ourselves in a world where no one listens, everyone talks, and the heart of hearing is absent.

I’ve spent most of my adult life speaking through writing, usually only privately, in my journal, because I was listening to others and no one was listening to me. Or so I thought and felt. 

Yet now I realize that I was being heard. There was a reason I wrote and then felt better. Because, by writing, I was hearing myself, hearing my heart, working things out, and, I also knew on some level that when I wrote it was, and is, a sort of prayer, a conversation with Goddess. I write the words and their unspoken vibrations are embraced by The Divine. She hears me, She always has ... in dark times or light, She cries with me and dances with me.

And when I am in nature, She hears my Soul and heart resonating ... and She retunes me like a harp, plucking the strings and tightening or loosening them until I am once more at ease. I’ve been heard. 

Now it’s my turn to hear Her. Maybe that’s where my contemplative writing comes in. I was/do express myself but also I mirror Her calls and concerns, Her needs and gifts, how we dance together. We are One, and when we listen to each other, the stillness is deafening as it becomes a universal symphony spiraling us into galaxies of the heart. Can I share our dance, our song, with others?

Let’s find the balance to listen and truly hear through the heart.

Monday, December 3, 2012

The Guardian Part 5

Waiting. It’s that time of day where the sun is low over the far tree line, the orange light fading from the sky. And that means she’ll be here soon. So I sit. And wait. Someone yells at me from behind and across the yard, but I don’t even swivel an ear. I can see the parking lot from exactly here. In this spot, there’s a little hole in the bushes, so I know when she gets here. So, I sit. 
The nice woman who works here doesn’t usually make me come in with the other dogs anymore. I didn’t like it here at first. And when Rain walked off without me the first time, I howled and barked and cried all night until I my voice was only a whisper of sound. There was so much noise all around me with lots of unfamiliar dogs barking, and shiny metal gates clanging, and the feed pans would screech across the hard floor in my den and the others around me. At least until I learned to tune out the noise. 
I didn’t eat that night or the next morning and the nice woman with the round face and pink cheeks had to coax me out into the big grassy yard where she talked to me and petted me while we walked around. Well, she walked and I kept pulling back. I didn’t know her and she was pulling me away from the direction of the blue door and Rain. Where had Rain gone? Would she be back? She said she would and I tried to believe. But I was scared she had left me. How could we help each other if I’m left here without her?
But you know what? She did come back to me. The very next day near sundown, I heard Rain’s voice calling me from the doorway to the big yard and I ran full tilt into her nearly knocking her down. She sat on the ground right there, hugging me and laughing, as I licked her face and then tucked my nose into her armpit where I stayed for a long while, breathing in her scent so I wouldn’t forget her ever.
Rain stayed with me a long time. She talked and I listened, her voice once more the soothing song of gentle rainfall. But, before I was ready to be alone again, she stood up and said she had to go. She promised to return. She came back this time but what if she didn’t again? 
I stood on my hind legs when Rain stood up and I wrapped my front legs around one of hers, holding, whining. I saw her eyes begin to water and she kept talking, but I couldn’t understand her through my own fear. 
Well, that was a long time ago. A long time for a pup anyway. The moon has already gone missing, and then come back to grow big and round again a whole time. I’m already a little taller than I was when Rain brought me here. I’ve gotten used to the other dogs and noises and people. But right now I wait.
There! A familiar car shape pulls into the lot and I start to wiggle. I can’t help it. The door opens and Rain steps out. I bark as loud as I can. And bark again. She looks over toward me, though the bushes block most of her view. I see her smile. 
“Hi, baby!” Her voice is the best sound in the whole world. I circle and dance my feet until she goes in the blue door. Then I race over to the yard door, watching, barking, pacing. The door opens and Rain’s here!
“How’s my girl doing?” Rain asks me, kneeling and hugging me. I feel like she’s been gone forever instead of just a day. I sniff her, she pets me, hugging me close, kissing the top of my head while I try to lick her face. It’s a crazy fun time.
“I have a surprise for you. Really good news.” Her voice is a bit higher in pitch and she talks faster than usual.
“We’ve signed the papers and bought the house in the mountains. Next week I can bring you home to stay!” I’m not sure what all this stuff means yet, but Rain is really happy and excited so it must be good for both of us. Me, I’m just happy she’s here with me right now. I like when Rain is happy. That’s when we run around the yard playing tag or tug-of-war on a rope. She throws balls for me, too, but I don’t go after them because they take me away from her.
She’s not always happy when she comes, though. Those times I cuddle up next to her. Sometimes she’s droopy and her whole body sighs and she talks about how things aren’t the way she thought they would be. Sometimes her body is tense and sort of pulled in on itself and she cries. Those are the worst, and I get as close to her as I can. When that happens, we just sit off in a corner in the big grassy yard. I snuggle and lay my chin on her leg or tuck my head in between her arm and side, while she strokes my head, caresses my ears, and sinks her slender fingers into my thick fur, kneading muscles. I like her touch and our closeness seems to help. She’s usually smiling near the end of her visit. 
Once in a while, I get a Big Reward and she attaches the red leash to my collar and takes me with her in the car where we go and have adventures. But we always end up back here.
“So, it’s the weekend. Where shall we go?”
Weekend! That’s it. That’s the word she says when I get to go in the car with her and do something fun. The Big Reward. We have adventures like going to the forest to hike trails for hours. So many smells that my nose gets tired.
A couple of times we drove to a brick building in the town, and I had to be very quiet.
“No dogs are allowed in the apartments,” Rain said, her brows drawn together a little as she talked to me in a low, firm voice. “You have to be really quiet, and if you are, then you can stay with me tonight, all night long. Since you-know-who is working, you can come in.”
Those times were great. I would climb the stairs with her and go into the rooms that smelled like Rain and yummy food and rabbit and birds. I think the rabbit is very interesting. Rain is teaching me that the rabbit is part of our family. That’s what she says. And we don’t hurt family. I’m still a little confused about it, because I remember chasing a rabbit in the fields where I used to live, but I try to pay attention and learn the rules. The two tiny birds just scatter seeds all over the table and I’m too short to see them very well.
There was another human scent there, too. And I’ve met him. I don’t like him very much. He reminded me of Big Man. They don’t look the same but I could feel anger in the man with the short black hair and intense dark eyes. Wolfie whispers in my head to be careful, possible danger, so I held back from Dark Man. I still don’t much like men anyway. And I didn’t like how Rain acted when the man was around. She would glance at him constantly, always looking to see how he was acting, and she kept me on my leash. 
But the Dark Man was only there the once for a short bit. Rain said he had to go to work. His shirt and pants were the same dark color with a stripe down the side of his pant leg. And he put around his waist a thick leather belt with lots of metal on it. The last thing he did was put a gun into the leather. I knew the word ‘gun’ because I remembered Big Man had one. Big Man used to get his gun when he said he was going hunting. But Big Man’s gun was long while this gun was short. 
But right now, Rain is pulling the red leash out of her back pocket. I circle around her feet, and she laughs.
“Where shall we go today, Kiki?” 
That’s the other name she calls me. It’s a new name. Rain said I needed a proper name, that’s what she told me when she started using the new word. I’m getting used to it. Doesn’t matter to me what she calls me as long as I get to stay with her.

-- to be continued -- 
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