Last night the rain rolled in and continues down pouring today. After years of heat and drought it is wonderful…and weird, as water streams everywhere, puddles turning into ponds and creeks appear in unexpected places. Will I be able to get through the road dip tomorrow? Some roads are already closed.
Busy-ness is what best describes these blurry 3 months.
A 4-week lock-down moved right into 2 weeks of school holidays…which were filled with unexpected library shifts, online courses, creative activities, artistic collaborations, then back into term 4, which is now halfway through. It feels there has been barely space to breathe in between!
Around me, I notice I am not alone in feeling weary and fatigued. Seasonal changes, weather, and the strain of pandemic anxiety over the last 18 months has worn us ragged around the edges, whether we realise it or not. As December approaches, it’s almost eight months since I last saw family and friends on the coast. The strange thing is that time is feeling slow and fast, and though things have been busy, I feel like I’m suspended in slow motion; doing, yet not doing, simultaneously…lets do the time warp again!
During this time, I have been…
possibility, word releasing, marginal thoughts & toilet philosophy...
As usual, I have been reading and listening to some wonderfully inspiring books. I am a soft touch for stories written in verse, so I borrowed a handful in excited anticipation! I’ve read a few books by David Levithan, and love how cleverly he captures the emotions of the moment.
This month’s prompts have been collected from one book:
The realm of possibility
Let’s start with this wonderful title.
What does it evoke for you?
‘We are so used to releasing words’
How are we doing this? Releasing them from what?
Write about how you release words.
…thoughts in the margins…marginal thoughts…
My thoughts stretch in every which direction and don’t hesitate wandering into the margins!
What thoughts have you found or written in the margins?
Follow the formula:
Graffiti/toilet wall philosophy
What is the most interesting piece of life advice you have seen or written, outside or on a toilet wall?
It's the tail end of romantic February, so I'm cutting it fine. In saying that, we can always extend any celebration be it Valentines, kindness, gratitude, mothers and fathers, earth day, happiness, birthdays...let's keep the giving energies flowing to infinity!
As I drove home, listening to Kate Morton's The Clockmaker's Daughter, my gaze was drawn upwards to the sky, filled with masses of clouds catching the afternoon sunlight...spectacular!
This is a region full of wide open spaces and breathtaking sky-scapes.
Nature always overflows my being with wonder, awe and gratitude.
My week was a fulfilling mix of work and play, conversations with friends, little treats and quiet achievement.
What more could I hope for?
I find Pentacles soothing, though they represent material aspects of life, their earthy grounded energy help keep us secure and upright. Circles are a symbol of beginnings and endings, of continuity and steady motion. Enjoy the fruits of your labour, the harmony of success, you deserve it! Quite befitting as 9 is all about busi-ness and activity, leading to fruition and fulfilment.
The best way to continue my tarot journey and familiarise myself with the cards and their meanings, is to use them regularly.
I am in some amazing groups, follow some wonderful blogs and dip my nose in inspiring books often. All of these continually feed my fascination with universal symbolism, poetic and intuitive living, as well as my general wonder-lust!
This is the beginning of a monthly tarot card, nothing like a little universal energy to reflect upon and guide us along. I am still learning, warming up and trusting my intuition, so feel free to add your thoughts or interpretation and read or take what feels right for you.
I use The Hermetic Tarot by Godfrey Dowson.
He is looking ahead, his chariot pulled by winged fairies, adorned with pentacles, above him a butterfly-winged angelic head.
Master of thought, ideas and design, the King of Swords is controlled but determined, trusted to be fair in judgement and decisions, he will use his power and authority if necessary, ruling with his sword and slaying with his sickle. The suit of swords represent air which governs mental clarity, thought processes and intellect.
The Court cards can represent aspects of yourself, though often represent someone you know (perhaps a star sign of that element), they may also represent a situation. The King is a mature man of great strength, someone you may look to for advice and guidance. He is firm in his truth, drawing logical conclusions and could be a researcher, lawyer, teacher, in communications or the military.
I listen, learn, observe and take in all aspects of a situation. A good time to make changes and set new goals.
Use your head, find a strategy, plan ahead, make changes without becoming too emotional.
Symbolism : butterfly wings - transformation, pentacles - magical talismans, protection and guidance.
Because I let time get away, I'm catching up!
Wrapping up 2020 and still quietly contemplating my intentions for 2021.
I stuck this together,
in a kind attempt to not overload your inbox,
though I've more to ponder,
more to say,
so please excuse the spurt of activity...
it will pan out and find a rhythm soon!
This is me keeping track of myself.
Seems I'm a mixed media human too!
with peculiar consistency,
slow and steady,
full of wonder and dreaminess,
overwhelmed with happy-sad emotions,
inspiration and desire,
wishing to do everything
contradictory and nonsensical,
I am me.
It got way too hot, too soon!
counting down school weeks
going through the motions
staying up late
Before I knew it, 2020 was gone!
December was a blur even though it felt slow.
I headed to the coast.
I caught a summer cold and got my first covid test.
Grey days and regular rain have been glorious.
I stretched myself out, continuing some pottery glazing and helping friends at their native plant nursery.
It is a crazy month for making as the days fill up with end of year stuff, so there will be catch up to do.
I tend to get quiet and reflective this time of year.
It certainly has been ripe with emotional upheavals!
Last months heat has evened out and the festive season was cooler and wetter than it has been for years, so refreshing.
formula fun & mindful walking...
Formulas are fun and make writing easy. So we’ll keep it simple and play around with some I found in Image and Write...Poetry
By Karin K. Hess
Line #1: Write three ing words Examining, studying, testing,
Line #2: I am I am searching for a cure
Line #3: Write three adjectives Tired, tense, drained
Line #4: I feel I feel so close...
CAPTURING THE MOMENT
This formula freezes an instant and examines various aspects of it.
Line #1: Adverb or Adjective Asleep
Line #2: I was I was dreaming
Line #3: Verb or Adjective Content
Line #4: I am I am not alone
Line #5: Verb or Adjective Comforted
Line #6:I will I will try again
Line #7: Verb or Adjective Refreshed
Line #8: Now Now I can.
Line #1: What if
Line #2: I might (leave a space between lines 2 & 3)
Line #3: What if
Line #4: I could
Line #5: What if
Line #6: I would (leave a space between lines 6 & 7)
Line #7: Ask a question
Walk as if you are kissing the Earth with your feet.
- THICH NHAT HANH
Walking is a technique of solitude, a way into reverie. The walker is not a sleepwalker but a daydreamer. - DEIRDRE HEDDON
If you seek creative ideas go walking. Angels whisper to a man when he goes for a walk. - RAYMOND INMON
All truly great thoughts are conceived by walking.
- Friedrich Nietzsche
Last week we went on pilgrimage within ourselves, this week, let’s go for a little wander. Contemplate these words while walking somewhere lovely, then let your words wander on the page…
2020 is a slow fast year and I am so lucky to be part of some amazing online creative communities that help me navigate through all the ins and outs, ups and downs, highs and lows of the current age.
I believe that everyone is creative in their own unique, imperfect way.
Art isn’t only about drawing.
Poetry isn’t only about words.
Creativity isn’t only about making.
Art, poetry, beauty and creativity are all around us,
they are in the way we see and do things.
Each one of us has a spark within that keeps us alight
from the inside out.
Maybe you have many fires burning within or only one,
what matters is that something fuels you.
Creativity lies in that which gives us purpose, in what inspires us; whether you find it in the kitchen, the garden, at work, in the shed or studio, the where is not important.
The magic happens in how you nurture that spark,
how you tend your fires,
your creative energy.
It is there.
It is yours,
to keep private or share.
Embracing it is incredibly liberating.
Sharing and developing your creativity with likeminded souls is extremely rewarding. I am sending out much appreciation and gratitude to these inspiring groups that help keep my creative essence flowing!
At https://www.handmadebookclub.com/with Ali Manning from Vintage Page Designs, I continue to improve my skills, learn new bindings and share with book arts crazy creatives around the globe!
Dyed and gone to heaven paper dyeing and other wonderful bookbinding courses with Liz Constable
Easy bake Artisan Papers, course with Roben Marie https://robenmariestudio.com/
With all the writing, journaling and reading I do, I often discover links via social media feeds and sign up to interesting blogs and have found some fantastic poetry courses.
I have been a member of the Mystical Pōm Poetry group with Emily Motzkus https://www.emilymotzkus.com/for a few months now and am so happy to have found such a guide, such a group of amazing, kind women to learn and discover poetry, (among other things), with.
Emily has created a mystical poetry wonderland, of which she is the most perfect imperfect guide, full of vulnerability, excitability and enthusiastic encouragement. Her love for all things poetic is contagious and inspiring. This caring creative community has enabled me to see poetry everywhere and empowered me to embrace the witchy poetess within me.
I had great journaling sessions with:
Susan Eckert MA of https://www.thetransformationspace.com/
And https://michellegd.com/ and blogging advice with Pip Lincolne from http://meetmeatmikes.com/
My own online creative writing workshop is open to all. I post prompts Monday's on FB and my blog.
I have dabbled in more online poetry courses with:
Everyday is a poem
Free short courses with https://www.futurelearn.com/
How to make a poem
A-levels study boost: Unseen poetry and the creative process
How to read a poem
And not forgetting all the creatives on Instagram like the #areyoubookenough community, sharing incredible creative challenges.
I am constantly in awe!
As it is almost half way through September, last months overview is already old news!
As the laptop does it’s internal thing,
I’m surrounded by the hum of the fireplace, (old, noisy, yet efficient),
radio tunes and the ever succulent thrum of wind and rain.
Sounds soaking down,
through and within,
bringing green transformations,
future abundance and
ease to the farmer’s mind.
Three faithful furry companions curl up beside me.
My eye is caught by reflections of birds flitting,
enjoying the winter shower outside.
My mind wanders,
nothing unusual there.
I’m prone to distraction and
grey, wet skies make me pensive.
Natural cleansing and replenishing
as nature washes and refreshes her pores,
she extends her transformative energy out to us.
I head to my backyard studio with thoughts of flowing medieval dresses and everyday costume wearing in my head, there was plenty of umming and ahhing and not so much sewing...
My attempts to match patterns to fabric weren’t happening, not to mention choosing sizes. In sewing pattern terms, this means my measurements are equivalent to 3 different sizes...damn, in my mind I seemed to be the same shape as I ever was!
Some days aren’t made for starting or finishing.
Some days are only for pottering, tinkering, wondering, beginning, testing, trying, experimenting, fiddling.
Some days, despite inspiration and intention, it just doesn’t come together how you imagined it would.
I did start a skirt!
Weekend baking. Staring meditatively as the hand mixer combined butter with sugar, eggs, vanilla and milk.
Watching, contemplating as all these separate ingredients slowly began to merge together.
Words, thoughts and connections mixed and merged in my head, correlations - cooking to life, manipulating things, butter in my hands...I had a word, a phrase and then it was gone! The essence of the idea remains though the word escapes me.
Reminder to myself (again) always write down words and thoughts immediately!
Courage, hope and the traces left behind...
I find that when I am focused on something, I see or hear it everywhere! This works with writing too. It is on my mind and I see correlation all around me, whether it is a few words I overhear, lyrics in a song or even random thought patterns while mixing a cake! Somewhere in this process, courage popped into my head. Is it an idea, a concept, a virtue or a strength and where does it come from? Can you describe or define courage?
Hope is the Thing with Feathers by Emily Dickinson
During this topsy-turvy year where little has gone as we imagined, what thing is hope for you?
Last week we described the art of trying, a title inspired by a short reflection by Paulo Coelho from his book Like the Flowing River. This week, we change the angle of focus and reflect on the traces we leave behind us or that are left upon us, as we attempt to master the art of trying. Are they visible scars or invisible tracks? What form do they take? Do they define you? Do you make them with intention and wear them with pride or are they cause and effect of life?
How to try, artful thinking and play dates.
The Art of Trying. Write a description for this title.
There is art in much of what we do, from making tea, to hanging out the clothes and brushing your hair. Look at your daily art-scape. What are your rituals, your particularities?
Have you hung out with your inner child lately?
In her book The Source, Judith McAdam explains that in order to find alignment with source energy, we must first heal and nurture the child within us. With time and age, we often forget, repress or neglect the child we were, even though that child is always present and an important part of our true essence.
Find a childhood photo of yourself and free write your play date. How in touch with her are you? How will you reconnect? How is she feeling? Does she need fixing?
For me, it seems there is not much difference between wondering and wandering. It has always helped me find inspiration. Creative dabbling is good for the soul, I couldn't imagine life without it and often surprise myself by what I come up with.