Across The Bridge And Thru The Woulds

And NOW for today’s epic shimmy through the eye of the needle.  Ya know what I mean?  …Or must I spell it out?  Well, I suppose if you already knew everything I was gonna say, I wouldn’t need to spell out a single word.  I would just be a bus driver, or a garbage collector and be done with it.  Wow, I’d make such a luscious garbage collector… in shiny red stilettos… Ahem.  So what I mean is– that the world inside me has more facets and dimensions than the the immensest diamond in the mind of God.  And this blank page of potential is the eye of the needle.  Reaching inside and feeling for what is most electric and raw and ripe…  that’s the job of the writer, proclaims Athena Grace, as a smile spreads her face wide with glow.

 

Inhale.  Exxxxxhale.  I feel dull today.  Dull and introverted.  I sorta wonder why.  I think it has something to do with my recent visit to Reno to visit my dad.  I often forget about the nuanced depths of the unconscious mind… I guess I get easily seduced into the captivating dazzle of all that I see out my eyes and feel in my body NOW… the overt weave of dreams and fears and ignited, soulful aspirations… I forget that the lotus thrives because its root sucks secret nutrients from the dark, unknowable, rich ness of slimy, muddy depths.  Slimy, muddy depths.  I think they got stirred in Reno.  And now I’m not a prismatic, holier than thou vessel of seeming purity.  I’m a glass of baffled mud.  Shrug.  Not much I can do about it, except BE HERE.  So I’m being here.  It’s sunday.  Usually on sunday mornings I dance myself inside out… unless I’m out of town or dead.  But today I showed up to dance… and nothing could make me move.   Everything inside lovingly hissed, “fuck this”.  So I left.  And went home and sat in like a perplexed, oversized potato on my bed.  Now it’s hours later and I’m still a baffled potato.  But I figured I’d at least open the pearlescent gates of my mind and allow strategic letters of the alphabet to scamper single file out of me in hopes of stumbling upon something of myself previously unseen.  Awe, that sounds so deep.  But maybe I don’t want to be deep.

 

Well first order of business is that my mom oft makes fun of me for using the wrong spelling of a word here in Athena Graceland… for example saying, “I want to go live in a log cabin in the woulds”!  Ha!  That’s funny.  No wonder it cracks my mom up.  She says “awe” is the wrong kind of aww.  Hahaha.  I’m tickling myself.  Trying to language this topic is like sumo wrestling the FAT-ASSED externalized authority that is mostly held hostage in a sexy stone tower somewhere in the enchanted northern hemisphere of my brain.  But I’m up for it!  And besides, if you had the choice of spelling “aww”, A-W-W or A-W-E, which one would YOU chose?  Awe, right?  Hands down!  Because awe= an overwhelming feeling of reverence, admiration, fear, etc., produced by that which is grand, sublime, extremely powerful, or the like: in awe of God… what’s NOT to love about reaching in your magic hat and seizing a fist full of THAT?!  Except for the fear piece… I didn’t know that awe could be an overwhelming feeling of fear.  In fact, screw that.  I’m gonna flat out disagree.

 

And now, ladies and gentle men, for the TURNING POINT of this blog, where all of my words become psycho-emotionally caloric and super-charged with meaning!

 

Shards of rainbow are wobbling languidly about the interior of my domestic slab of existence.  It’s nearly four pm and the indian summer light… wow… speaking of caloric!  I feel like I’m a seahorse sized mermaid in a rectangular aquarium filled with an exquisite strain of liquid light.  You might imagine me to be but a girl crying wolf as I profess to be rolling up my sleeves and driving at some sort of weighty essential core of this blog… but the fact that I really am a miniature mermaid habitating in a human sized tank of light and rainbows is the perfect prelude to my impending assertion that it is FULL ON, as we prance collectively into the final, waning moments of twenty twelve.  And I live how everyone is so casual about it!  We’re acting like it’s always been this way, and it’s hella normal. Which, in a way, it IS… But mostly it’s totally NOT!  Listen, I’ve always been the token mouth puker-inner, when someone signs their email, “love and light”… Because COME ON– it’s SO repulsively new-agey.  You might have mistakenly put me in the “new agey” box… but “your bad”… cuz I’m not.  Just cuz I happen to have a delicious glow of contemporary Jesus-i-ness, does NOT make me new agey.

 

BUT WHO CARES ABOUT ME, what I’m driving at, is that the dawn has COME and the technicolor rising of love and light on the horizon of our collective consciousness is so striking and overt at this point that one must call a spade a spade.  Wow.  Not only was that a robustly poetic and dazzling thesis statement, but Wonder Woman, was it SO TRUE.  Something IS dawning inside of us now.  I feel it surging like a broken damn through the bloody birth canal of my own being… and as well, I see it, smell it, feel it, taste it EVERYWHERE.  I can’t leave the house without spotting someone sporting a “LOVE” t-shirt.  And I don’t just mean one of my fellow new-age-freak-holes. I mean even the most unsuspecting ghetto-bootied oakland chick, chillin on her twilight picnic blanket, daintily lifting mc donald’s fries to her drippingly glossy mouth with fingers donned in neon acrylic nails longer than london bridge.

 

And just log on to my Facebook page– everyone is saying the most enlightened things… incessant exclamations of gratitude and love and deep care for this world and all of its inhabitants.  You’d think we were all the second coming of Buddha or something.  Oh wait, we ARE.  But we finally are realizing it.  And it’s cool how natural it seems.  Nobody seems to be making a big deal of it… Like “of course were God”.  Grin.  Like how night melts into day so smoothly that suddenly the darkness is nowhere to be found and the sun is blinding you and it ain’t no thang.  That’s the magic of dawn.  That’s the grace imbued in nature and time and cycles.

 

Oh crap, I’m ready to end this blog, and I don’t feel like groping around in the uncharted reaches of my asshole in search of the most fluid, intelligent exit.  My departure feels reminiscent of attempting to leap off of a speeding train.  Well I’m gonna leap!  And land in a soft, benevolent wash of love and light (wink).  Here I goooooo…. But I shall leave you with this entirely true declaration–

 

Reading these words, you have crossed a bridge.  By the Sacred Power vested in me, I now pronounce you WIDE AWAKE and eternally blessed as an innocent and perfect child of God.  I’m serious.

 

Amen.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Playing With Life

Silence.  I just turned off Amma bhajans, opting to instead dissolve in the subtle sounds of the present moment, au naturelle.  Seven forty pm and it’s dark as yo mama outside.  The wind is barbaric.  Sigh.  Oh… I guess first things first, (as we say in my country) you are probably wondering WHERE I am sleeping these days… For this week, I am sleeping in the Temple behind the house I was subletting a room in.  Sometimes guests are welcomed in here for a week at a time.  I’ll tell ya WHAT?!  I am happy as a clam’s perverted oyster ex-husband in here!  Happier, maybe.

 

Did you know that as the synchronicity symphony would play it, my [beloved] leprechaun friend, Jack built this house AND the ensuing Temple?  Yes.  And he’s not even like a prevalent builder on the island or anything.  He’s a plain old man (as “plain old” as a leprechaun can BE for goddess sake), who just happened to build one single house with his bare hands, and I happened to land here AND become instantaneously thick as whale skin with Jack.  Life is the weirdest… I don’t care what you say.  It is tripadelicus maximus.  Yeah, Jack the leprechaun has followed a Buddhistically persuaded path.  His main teacher (who is heavily affiliated with Pema Osil Ling, a retreat center in the santa cruz mountains in California, where I did a life altering women’s weekend three years ago…) came and helped him invoke the sacred space where this Temple was to be built.  They chanted and prayed and buried crystals in the ground.  This was many years ago.  And now I am here, nestled in the tender alcove, lovingly folded into the darkness… blogging.  And I couldn’t be happier.  I swear, this place is enchanted.

 

Well, I suppose I could be a LITTLE happier.  I just went in the kitchen to make an avocado and homemade kraut nori roll… and Brad was in an intense, emotionally tattered state.  I on the other hand was whistling and snorting, high on yoga, health food and a general sense of holy rapture.   But I guess I was a little insensitive… JUST A LITTLE… And I’m afraid my energy was off-putting to B-ditty.  I’m so sensitive.  So allofa sudden, I felt myself clam up.  Shhhllluuup.  (Deep breath.)  It’s weird how it can feel almost criminal to be joyful in the presence of one who is suffering.  It seems like there is so much more permissive agreement in the modern world amongst those who are suffering… SEEMS.  Seeming can be dangerous… I am open to existing in a reality other than that.  A reality, say, where the joy, peace and gratitude of those around me is contagious and exponential!  But it sure didn’t feel that way in the kitchen.  I felt guilty for feeling and embodying the simplicity of God blowing through my being like a sweet, evening breeze, heavy with the scent of ripe peaches, exotic oolong tea and lusting skin.  Forgive, Athena.  Yup.  I forgive myself for my joy, my guilt, my self judgment… I forgive Brad for “seeming” to be negatively impacted by my presence.  I know, I know, I’m so hyper sensitive… Love me or leave me.  (I’d prefer if you loved me… just for the record.)

 

Kai, the dude whose room I was subletting, just came into the temple to do some yoga.  We talked for a coupla minutes and I lost my train of thought.  He asked me how blogging was going and I said it was bitchin because blogging is my favorite thing in the whole wide world, because I feel so free.  I am the Creator.  I get to say anything I want.  I get to exist exactly as I am, whole, complete, tangled, forgetful, unbridled, nutty, perverse…  And I live in the exhilarating perpetual challenge of offering it with as much beauty and eloquence as humanly possible.  When I blog, I feel deeply purposeful and fulfilled.

 

Kai.  He’s twenty five.  I’m kind of an ageist… I guess just because personally, I hated my twenties.  It was grueling to be this ridiculously wise, old soul in such an arduously young body.  A body carrying a crap load of crunchy, unprocessed baggage, a horrible case of amnesia and diddly squat when it came to life experience.  But now… I’m almost somebody!!!!  (Cracking myself up again…)  I can smell Kai’s sweet, musky deodorant rising in an invisible current of body heat from here as he rolls around on the dark temple floor on his stiff foam roller.  My turn-on just spiked by forty seven percent.  The first time I saw him yesterday, I was pleasantly surprised by how attractive he was.  I wasn’t expecting it.  I wasn’t expecting such a thick, broad chest… or such wide, sparkly blue eyes rimmed with amazing lashes.

 

“Wow, you’re… so attractive…” Those were the very first words that tumbled out of Athena Grace’s mouth upon introduction.  It was moment of child-like purity… followed by some major self consciousness.  I got super self critical… First impressions, ya know?  I mean… he could have all too easily misconstrued my (Another waft of deodorant! Yum!) loose liberation, since he had zero frame of reference for it.  He didn’t really seem to know what to make of me.  Woops.  That’ll teach me to be so flabby around the verbiage.

 

Anyway, the next thing I knew, I was deep in the throes of “operation forgive myself and move on”.  But thankfully I’m getting better at that game.

 

Enough about Kai.  I need to tell you that I have a boyfriend for the next six minutes.  Till midnight HIS time.  Guess who?!  Mykael!  WHAT???  Athena…

 

Yeah.  He reached out to me today and expressed that he was finally grieving the loss of my skin, my daily presence in his life.  You see, he’s been consumed with the task of passing his nursing exams… AND HE PASSED!!!!!  So now his spirit is free to unfurl and actually FEEL something.  And me?  I am a fountain of love, strength and clarity, joyous to receive his authentic, heart-drenched expression.  I’ve been LOVING our communications lately.  So open, honest and rich.  This morning, after a long, deep conversation, I felt him swimming in my oceanic heart and it was very pleasant, so I texted him and invited him to be my boyfriend for the day.  He said yes!  I got to practice being in my first *very* polyamorous relationship.  A relationship where I am whole and independent…

 

Am I making ANY sense?  Yes, it was a playful game.  But with some deep notes of truth to it.  (Awe, shucks… his clock struck midnight… he’s not my boyfriend anymore… Grin.  I love playing with life…) It’s just felt pleasant and refreshing to enter into that sacred space of the love we share… a deeply familiar space… in the face of everything else in the world being so radically new, different, profound.  So… I asked him if he’d be my long distance, polyamorous Man with a capital M, once a week!  Thursdays… He said YES!  So we’ll just give it a whirling dervish of a test drive for a week or two.  Relationships don’t have to fit in all the binding boxes we mostly try to jam them in, you know…

 

Ahhhh, LIFE!  Well, my Beloveds… I hope you have found this blog to be illuminating, thought provoking, titillating, entertaining, or otherwise savory.  And I pray that some of the beautiful love in my heart has evoked the beautiful love in Your heart.  Tell me it has…

 

With an ecstatic Amen,

Athena Grace LMNOP

Frolicking With My Wizard Friend

I’m not sure if I’m capable of blogging on the beach… Because I am being inundated by excruciating beauty from all sides.  But I’m gonna give it my all.  My wizard friend, Jack took me to one of his favorite places on the south side of the island today, Maha`u`lepu.  I was skeptical, because the south shore is known for being more of a spoiled tourist mecca.  But come on, what did I have to lose?  Plus, Jack’s enthusiasm alone was worth our pilgrim’s slog.  Turns out, the magic here is thick enough to spread on toast!!!  I just tried to take a couple of pictures for you… but I don’t think they do much justice to the transcendent exquisiteness that I am marinating in right now.

 

Even just the fresh sea air alone is worth writing an entire opera about.  It’s a steady, determined breeze that forces its soft, salty, satin way into my lungs and under my fluttering clothes. I’m sitting on a mat in the sand, shaded by these native Australian trees.  Jack says the aborigines called them “talking trees”, because of the self assured tongues they speak in when the wind plays in them.  They’re tall, slender, scraggly evergreens.  But of course I’m saving the best for last.  The water!  It is like an immense, undulating patchwork colored jewel. (Jack called it “sea bling” as diamond light shimmies about the surface.) Towards the shore, it is pale, lucid aquamarine.  So pale, you can see to the sandy floor.  As it sprawls out, the aqua becomes emeralds, turquoise and jade.  Beyond that, it dances into a classical oceanic indigo.  Oh, and let’s not leave out the creamy, white froth that spontaneously leaps into existence like feisty punctuation.

 

This wet, swelling bejeweled body has stolen my heart.  And I say, Mama, it’s YOURS, take it!!!  Her tides have lured my heart into a state of fevered devotion.  I want to be by her side forever.  If I am too dense and human to remember the All Pervading Ocean, at least I can remember this vast though finite earthbound version of the Infinite with which my heart thirsts to be merged once more.  (And yes, I know that once merged, always merged.  I know that I have never left the Ocean, and neither have You, Blessed Friend… But it’s this silly game of duality.  Bites us on the butt every time!)  A seal just swam up to the beach for a little resy-poo.  Auspiciousness!  I love watching her blubber jiggle as she shimmies along the golden sand.

 

Now that I’ve set the scene, I want to tell you about Jack.  We met a month ago tomorrow.  He was my forth poem customer on the island.  I told you before that sometimes I have an immediate knowing that certain people are going to approach me for a poem.  I recognized Jack the moment my eyes fell on him.  Actually, I mistook him for my dear friend, Phoenix (who originally brought me “Home” to Kauai seven years ago)… from the back.  I thought, “Phee would have told me if he was coming to Kauai, wouldn’t he?”  But then I saw Jack’s pale, lucid blue eyes, which happen to be portals into an etheric, mystical dimension of which I am still not entirely acquainted… But I do know it’s a heavily enchanted land of wizards and other such wonders.

 

“Welcome home,” he told me a month ago… and something in me knew without a doubt that he *really* was welcoming me home.  He’s singing a song right now.  He is often singing a song.  He lives in a tent on an orchard in Moloa`a and spends his time slurping the copious island beauty through a straw and spitting it back out into sketches, paintings, poems, songs and a general [aloha] spirit of reverent, wizardish merriment.  He adores me.  When we’re together, I feel like a queen… but not the stuffy Queen of England variety.  NO!  The queen of enchanted nooks and crannies.  The queen of the inner space formerly know as “outer space”.  He is ever zealous to share everything wonderful and overflowing with me.  He’s enthusiastic like an unspoiled, awe-struck child, yet wise like a man who has lived a long, full life in a School of Knocks of Diversified Intensities.  I am very discerning about the company I keep… and Jack is top notch.

 

But if I was all caught up in appearances, bound by rigid expectations about the form in which my true friends would appear, I would certainly have missed him altogether.  I mean golly, he’s a short, balding fifty four year old man with a mutton choppy beard and a vibrant slew of button down Hawaiian shirts.  I’m glad my head is not SO far up my ass that I would miss him… and all of the other Beloveds whom God has delivered in such a clever diversity of packages.  Though I must say, I have a proclivity toward older men.  The quality, heart-FULL ones make stellar company.  Maybe because I’m not all preoccupied with having sex with them… I suppose they probably are of me… but they’re well behaved and seasoned enough to appreciate me in my fullness and they blossom in my vivacious company.

 

Jack told me today, “I wrote in my journal the other night that you have the sexiest mind of anyone I’ve ever met.”  I had to laugh, because Dan, another one of my all time favorite Beloveds (a sixty two year old piece of Holy Artistry) used to tell me the same thing often… Sexy mind…  Okay, I’ll try that on!  It’s one thing to be incessantly tangled in this “sexy” mind of mine… and entirely another to see it all neat and tidy from the outside.  Next time I’m running myself in mental dervish circles, I’ll have to remember that it’s actually sharp and SEXY, in addition to being chaotic, crazy and SO beyond unruly!

 

My tantric philosophy teacher, Douglas Brooks loves to remind his students, “You are the company you keep, so KEEP GOOD COMPANY!”  When I’m with Jack, I am fully alive, passionate, unlimited, inspired, grateful, regal, appreciative, magical, generous, compassionate, useful and wide awake!  I like me this way.

 

I guess I’ll keep him…

 

Amen.

 

PS~ It worked out okay… blogging in wind whipped paradise.  God?  Slip me some skin, All Pervading Pal!

 

Am I Dreaming?!

To Whom It May Concern:

It’s seven forty six pm.  I am well spent and I don’t really feel like writing… But I’m gonna do it anyway.  Because writing is my Beloved.  This blog is a relationship and I am devoted even when it my lips are chapped and my breasts are sandy and I’d rather be geeking out with my Course in Miracles text or knitting.

Hey!  I just realized that I love my own company!  I was really afraid I didn’t for a while there… because I can be so prone to loneliness.  But I’ll tell you what!?  Get ready, because this is precious, meaty wisdom of the ages…

Loneliness and self-containment, self-satisfaction… what ever kind of self-y-ness you want to call it… ARE NOT MUTUALLY EXCLUSIVE.  In the wicked world of black-and-white-either-or-dom, you might think that they were… but straight from the book of First-Handed Certainties… I can vouch that they are NOT.  Especially not on the island of Kauai.  I mean think about it… Today I did my sadhana, cooked amazing soup (made with carrot tops, chard, coconut meat, ginger, fresh turmeric root, onion, garlic… all blended together, sensuously smooth and thick.  Yum cubed!), read the BEST book in the world~ Secrets of the Talking Jaguar (which is the PERFECT book for me to be reading at this time of massive transition, because it is a memoir about a man answering a deep soul call and being radically led by Spirit(s).  Honestly, if I thought my journey was epic… His is at least a gazillion times more intense, courageous, authentic and unbelievably woven and ordained by Grace, Herself.), took a walk AND had my first introduction to surfing!!!

Wow, Athena!  Surfing?  How WAS it???

Terrifying.  Talk about feeling out of control!  OUT OF CONTROL…  Today was the first day of big swells.  The ocean has been pretty mild all summer.  For the week and a half that I have been here, Hanalei bay has just passively lapped at the soft sand of Her steadfast shore.  But not today!  The weather is changing, autumn is rolling in and so are the waves, baby!  Waves.  Sitting on the shore, watching the waves, I realized quickly that I have very little intimate relationship with them.  I don’t know how they behave and how that behavior impacts my body.  So trying shackle a long board to my ankle and add THAT unwieldy element into the equation seemed wildly unreasonable.  Needless to say, I hardly touched the board today.  I did a lot of mere BEING in the waves, developing fluency and comfort in their throes.  I also did a lot of observing of more fluent surfers.  And yes, I got up on the board a couple of times… But holy Jehosaphat!  Surfing is a whole different language.  Beyond that, it is a whole different WORLD.

I’m gonna go back tomorrow.

Have you ever swum in Hanalei Bay?  If not, I will say this much~ Puff is one tasteful dragon, boy!  Every time I am there, I feel like I am immersed in the most decadent and magnificent lucid dream… except in this dream, unlike my few prior lucid dreams, I don’t get so excited upon realizing that I am fully conscious in the dream state, that I wake myself up and find myself back in the disappointing [metaphorical] mud puddle that is my waking life, my plain old bed in the plain old dark.  Nope.  This time, when I realize that I am drenched in the most magnificent dream scene humanly possible, I just keep right on sitting there (or swimming…), surrounded by the lushest, greenest, breathing mountains, under a wide, unabashed sky whose sparse clouds look like humungous kernels of freshly popped corn, and the bay its self, streaming like a grandiose vat of crashing liquid silver.  Oh and often some purple fog haunts the tops of the jagged, green peaks in the not so distant distance.

I might stay here forever.  Wouldn’t you?  I guess island life is not for EVERYONE… but it certainly is for people who find deep fulfillment in such activities as writing, knitting, yoga, meditation, cooking fresh, simple food, reading great books, wandering through lush jungles, maybe making love again some day, frolicking in the surf and reminiscing about the good olde days when I had a luminous iridescent fish tail… For those types of people, Kauai is a highly suitable and savory Home.  I feel embraced by everything here.  Even when I am floundering around in my shit… The sensuous air swaddles me tenderly.  This is the perfect place to find myself as a whole, single woman… because the sacred land reaches to me, meets me like a Lover.  The sky breathes sweetness down my neck and up my skirt.  The warm, fertile earth gently gives beneath each step.  The birds sing me saucy, tropical love songs.  The flowers surf hidden currents that splash upon the shores of my awareness, leaving me dizzy and gasping.  Can this be real?  Strangely… yes.

Is it too good to be true?  Strangely…no.

I hitchhiked home from Hanalei (because I didn’t want to pay money to eat out with Brad and his enchanting girlfriend Chancey.).  A strong, dark, handsome surfer picked me up in his pick-up truck with monster wheels.  His two little children rode with him in the cab, so I rode in the back, fully submerged in the bliss of jungle dusk.  I hadn’t ridden in the back of a truck since childhood when my best friend’s dad used to give her and I recreational thrill rides around the block.  I sipped the soft sweet wind, gulped the glutinous colors and marveled at how excruciatingly good God is treating me.  I thought of You, my readers, wishing you were there with me… So I snapped a photo.  Welcome to my world, formerly known as “too good to be true”!

Amen.

Live From the Jungle Inside

Well… (That reminds me~ I used to have this stuffed monkey named “Montgomery Monkey” when I was a kid.  He said a handful of various things when you pressed on him in specific regions.  One of his tired antics was to tell a joke.  It went like this~ “Have you heard about the three holes in the ground?  …Well, well, well.”  Hahaha.  Not.)  Well… I’m back from Yosemite.  And Jesus H. Xmas (for some reason saying “Xmas” instead of “Christmas” really sets my funny bone a-ticklin’.  Either you’ll totally get it, or you totally won’t…) Jesus H. Xmas, was it a potent excursion.  There is SO much I want to tell you about it!  I don’t know HOW I could ever manage to cram it into a thousand words.  But rumor has it that “they” crammed the Lord ’s Prayer onto a single grain of rice… I think that’s one of the exhibits in Ripley’s Believe It Or Not.  Strange the superfluous tidbits that lodge themselves discreetly in fresh, young minds.  I’ve been carrying that one around for at least twenty years, without hardly noticing it once… and then in the swimming pool this morning, I was scheming about my blog and that just sprung to the surface of my consciousness like a buoyant old friend.  You know what I want?  I’m gonna start a whole collection of rice grains etched with bucking, snorting, divinely effervescent prayers… and then you know what I’m gonna DO with them?  I’m gonna cook them and serve them for dinner with some delicious coconut curry like I made tonight!  And YOU’RE invited!

Gosh, I guess I got your appetite all wet and drizzly for a taste of my savorier than thou escapades in Yosemite… as told on the modest yet evocative little body of our beloved olde pal, the rice grain…  But Jesus Xmas, I am the one snorting and bucking under the weight of all that pressure.  I don’t know if you know this about me… but I love to write from an emotional, energetically charged space.  These blogs are actually pilgrimages into the very center of my being and the ensuing spray of artifacts I trip over along the desolate way.  Desolate?  Athena Grace!  Dare you call your path and process “desolate”?  Yeah, I guess that’s pretty much text book blasphemy.  My path is more reminiscent of a jungle, I’d say.

Which reminds me~ on our way home from Yosemite, my soul sister Dara read me an email from a friend of hers who is on a very overt magical mystery tour right now.  She’s an older woman with grown children who had a deep soul calling to go to the jungles of umm… Ecuador?  And there she met her soul mate, a beautiful native shaman.  Her email was so rich, reverent and sensual.  It should be published and read by many.  Dara read it to me as the horizon exploded psychedelic orange with periwinkle and Venus aftermath.  The words bled in rivers of femininity.  Vulnerable power.  She told us how her lover greeted each day by walking out onto the deck, opening his arms wide to the raw jungle and making a full circle, honoring all of the life that miraculously unfurled and wove upon its self everywhere.  She told of his incessant worshiping of the divine in every fond touch of leaf, dirt, stream and creature as he moved through the thick, wet, forested world.  He spoke only Spanish.  She, only English… so much of their relationship exists in rich, non-verbal communication and sacred silence.  I felt pangs of longing and awe… She emblazened such crisp pictures of the jungle inside me~ the occasional thud of ripe fruits falling to the smooth hard dirt of the jungle floor.  Fireflies dancing in the thick, moist black of the night.

Why do I bring this up?  Because her words spread a profuse bed of seeds inside me and given my own fertile inner climate, they are already springing up into a jungle of their own, right here inside.  Hearing her story, I remember the mythology that each of us IS.  Every single One of us is on a hero’s (or heroine’s as the case may be) journey and everything that we live and breathe and taste is a retelling, an unfolding, an embellishment of the mythology of the World.  God’s journey through an elaborate, prismatic dream scape.  I am no more and no less of an epic Athena than the one who sprung out of Zeus’s head back in the good ole days.  And you, with your treasure trove of an inner world stand right along side Shiva, Lakshmi, Hanuman, Persephone and Thor!

We are each a sacred, mythical epic poem being inscribed on a single grain of rice in a vast ocean of rice, which someday will inevitably (and maybe anticlimactically) be cooked and devoured by All Pervading _________. (Fill in the blank… just be sure that the Pervasive One is only alive AS Love.)  Amen.

The Perplexing Mess of Relationship

Well, it’s official… Athena Grace LMNOP does not know how to win at the sordid game we call Relationship.  Which is ironic, because I remember like a year and a half ago when my eyes were still all clouded with operatic stardust, telling a man behind me in line at Trader Joes that I was really good at Relationship.  I might have even told him I had a gift at it.  Ha!  That’s embarrassing to admit!  That was back in the days when my Love was still running on the fossil fuel combination of lust and moon honey.  That was back in the day when I my well of devotion-stained patience seemed to slice right through the core of the earth, stretching not just to China, but beyond our very own Milky Way.

I used to feel like such a spiritual, enlightened bad-ass during those mile long fights with Mykael where I would just keep switching from reserve tank to reserve tank to reserve tank, draining each of them without a fret or a care.  And now?  And now… I am the camel with the perpetually broken back.  I am the bomb with the fuse almost as big as a microscopic splinter.

Remember back in the day when this blog practically revolved around all my churnings in relationship with Mykael?  And then suddenly, apocalyptically, his presence here on the page mostly blinked out like a dinosaur.  (I just had a really long pause while my mind’s eye tried to conceive of the image of a dinosaur “blinking out”.  I wondered, “Is that a good metaphor?”  I heard myself say, “It doesn’t really make sense”… to which I replied, “yeah, but I like it…”  I love being my own boss here on the page.  Whatever I say goes.  It’s a pretty sweet deal.  Anyway, I imagined it would be a drooling tyrannosaurus rex  that blinked out… one that was charging toward me, poised to DEVOUR… and then *BLINK*…*poof*… suddenly he is gone without a trace, only some rainbow colored neon psychedelic smoke remains.  And it smells like rotten eggs, like when you light those little colored smoke bombs on Fourth of July.)

Why the sudden out-blinking of my gratuitous mention of Mykael?  Well… because so many of my thoughts and feelings have been delicately fetal, not wholly formed and potentially damaging.  Not to mention so mercurial.  I have not been ready to commit to any of my view points for more than a day at a time at best.  And given that, I have realized that it’s not even a healthy subject matter for me to focus on in the privacy of my own mind.  I have been cultivating the self discipline to focus on myself and my path.  I have been spending much time in quietude as well as investing myself in other relationships.  (He too has been focused on matters of deeper purpose.)  It feels like a slow, gentle pulling apart.  But it’s really confusing in some moments.

Confusing because he has been so beautifully virtuous and generous toward me.  He has been giving me so much space to free fall through all the myriad of emotional spaces I have been breathing my way through… with such a sincere spacious generosity and unconditional love.  My greatest fear has been that because I am not committed to a future with him he would take his well worn, conditional love and lock it away behind the door to his own, private bedroom.  I should be afraid of that.  I have done it many times over the course of our relationship… always secretly hoping that HE would be the one to muster the courage to choose generosity and come back to hardened, sour me.  And mostly he has come to me… He has taught me a lot about being generous.  Staying.  About loving.

But I guess not enough, because I still don’t know that I want to stay and love.  That is what is so damn confusing.  I love him.  I LOVE HIM.  And… our relationship feels like perpetual hard work and fights and disappointments… and I think I might be crazy to keep choosing that.  But then I think I might be crazy to let it go… because are these lessons that I’m gonna have to face somewhere along the line, no matter what???  I don’t know.  Probably.  But there is some value in being alone for a while too… it’s been seven years since I was alone.  I did not even consider myself a woman back when I was twenty three.  (I started to feel like a woman at 27.  And since then, I feel more and more like a woman as the chorus of clocks tick me riper and closer to death.)

So you see… I’m in a tangle.  It’s confusing.  I’d rather think about other things, like cream colored ponies and schnitzel with noodles and… what it means to really feel intimate with God.  What it is to really give my life over in service of Love.  What it is to really surrender to the truth of ultimate aloneness… and the ironic connection to all life implicitly nestled at the core of that.  These inquiries are a far better investment of my energy and time and mind these days.  But then… Mykael is in the bedroom next door and our lives are braided together in so many ways and every once in a while, that causes some friction or an accidental milk spill.

Like yesterday.

I was wanting more from him than usual.  I guess I was just sick of aloneness and wanting to sooth myself with the salve of being loved and loving.  But mostly stepping into a space of intimacy with him just felt like trying to drive a wrecked train.  Unless we just held each other.  Anything else proved disastrous.  Which naturally amped up my perplexity to the next level.  I feel him so deeply.  Resting in his arms feels like a deep, ancient home.  Everything in me ignites and flows and comes alive like vibrant starlight.  It feels so right and natural.  Until we try to talk… and then it’s all sparks and flames and flying grit.  Shrug.

Finally, after quite a few stabs at moving closer, we just had to do our own things again.  He carved (like always) and I went for an evening hike in the immaculate earthy cathedral otherwise known as Redwood Park.  I remembered the wisdom of Little Grandmother, advising us humans to get our energy from NATURE, rather than other people… and even though I left the house sobbing, soon enough I was full on sweet scents of dirt and pine and cooling air.  I emptied myself out with every fresh footstep.  I released myself to the silence of the forest.  And then, near the end of the hike, All Pervading Grace offered me the sweetest gift!  I came to the top of a hill… my eyes snuck left to the plunging valley which gave way to a copious helping of open sky… and was smacked oh so softly by vibrant pink, lavender and blue lullabies, wafting soft to meet my weary eyes.  And a near full moon passively dripping with breathing gold.  This tidy little pearl, glowing.  Purring and glowing with unconditional smirking revelation.  Below the sky, was a montage of variously colored and textured distant mountains, laced with rivery ribbons of soft fog.  Lucid.  Dreamy.  Medicine.  I breathed it.  And breathed it some more.  I let it flood all the secret crevices and empty spaces and hungry places inside me.

I am doing my best.  I really am.  I sorta wish my best was better… or less messy and confusing… but… as my dad would say, “It is what it is.”

Amen.

Adventures on Jury Duty

I write about myself because that is what I know best.  My tangle of dreams, fears, longings, curiosities and inspirations are my areas of profound expertise.  But I also write about me so that you can know YOU better.  Each of us is a unique finger print of God… and yet in so many ways, we are ridiculously interchangeable.  So please know that as I unfurl my mind and my heart here on the page, that I am also unfurling YOUR mind and heart on some level.  We are all in this together, my Friends!

But I want to tell you about today, is jury duty.  I stepped into the courthouse schizophrenically split between being entirely open and voracious for the adventure of it and feeling like a crumpled, resistant scrooge.  I couldn’t decide if I wanted to just fling myself unabashedly into the arduous arms of bureaucracy or hop back on my bike and pedal home as fast as I could back to the warm safety of my bed.  It’s a maddening experience, being split like that.  I want to practice engaging in everything I do whole heartedly, single mindedly.  (Starting now, that is…Wink.)

I was surprised by the copious amount of heart and humanity that I felt from so many of the employees in the courthouse.  Especially the woman who was in charge of orienting us jurors.  Over the intercom, she bade us all a cheerful good morning.  Her offering was met with a few flat-lined grunts at best.   She tried again.  I shouted out, “Good MORNING,” as did a bunch of others.  From there, she went on to explain many things that we would need to know.  And she did it with inspiring, authentic engagement and heart.  Remember, she probably spends forty hours a week in that large, fluorescent lit room full of adults who mostly behave like apathetic high school students being “forced” to do something they don’t want to do.  It would be all too easy for her to implode and stagnate and behave like piss flavored coffee.

But instead she stepped in with fresh vibrancy and an inspired commitment to breathing the life back into us.  Just writing about her, I can feel my heart begin to dance.  Even the glossy lipped security woman who greeted me at the door wearing purple latex gloves (who confiscated my metal fork) was kind and genuine.  Upstairs in the courtroom, the same thing.  More people who against all odds had not been beaten into submission by the monotony and soullessness of “the system”.  Passed along through so many caring hands, I found myself able to sink in and enjoy the ride.  I can do this, I thought to myself.

Up in the courtroom they revealed our case.  The state of California against a young man who had shot and killed someone while engaged in “gang activity”.  He was later busted again for possession of a gun.  “Guilty, hands down,” came the unsolicited, immediate verdict from the choir of jurors in my mind.  It was a subtle verdict and I hardly paid attention to it.  Until the defendant was introduced to us and he stood up from his seat, turned around and waved to us.  He was a young black man.  He looked like someone I could have gone to high school with.  Not that he was… He wasn’t.  I’m just saying…

My inner jury sure changed their tone when he shifted from a concept, laden with numerical penal codes to a real live human being with a heart and a soul, waving at me from the front of the room.  My heart stung and my eyes welled up with tears.  From that moment, I knew that I would not make a good juror after all.

They handed out thick questionnaires to each of us in order to perform a preliminary screening.  I had solemnly sworn to tell the truth… and I did.  I felt like such an anomaly as I filled out my form.  I told them that I was not willing to close my heart.  I told them that even if the accused was guilty, that I didn’t believe that he deserved to be punished and locked up.  I said I thought that just exacerbated the less than desirable existing condition.  I told them I preferred the philosophy held in some indigenous cultures, where the entire village took responsibility for the health and well being of each member.  If one committed a “crime”, the village would circle around that person and sing them their song (the song that each mother to be goes out into the solitude of the wilderness and listens for as soon as she discovers she had conceived), reminding that person of the truth and purity of who they are.  Can you imagine me and the whole spectrum of jurors, the judge, the lawyers, even the family of the person who was killed, the bailiff, the court reporter… all singing this young man the song of his soul?

I’m tearing up.  I can imagine.

…Maybe next Wednesday, when I go back (to be officially dismissed, no doubt…) I will stand up and unabashedly loving, sing his soul song… and everyone in the room will be so moved and they will join in!  It will become a healing celebration where we reclaim our true oneness and forgiveness washes us clean and sets us free!  Dream with me, will you?  It’s not that far fetched.

Amen.

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