Dancing with Death (part I)

Well I survived my first night without Forest (since the hospital six months ago).  I had this raw dough gnawing feeling the whole time, but I made it!  Amidst my silent suffering, Shanti-ma reminded me to feel into FOREST and what HE wants.  He was very happy to be with his Nonnie and Papa.  I can see that it’s my own trip… I notice that I’ve come to rely on my sun’s solid, grounding presence.

Serena was elated to have me all to herself.  She practically became another person.  Cooperative.  Kind.  Sweet.  I mean those qualities are authentic to her nature, but lately amidst all the thrills and spills, the less savory aspects of her personality have been louder than I would prefer.  `I can feel her begging for my unwavering, unconditional acceptance, presence and holding… I try to give it to her… but I’ve been too starved for too long and I often feel desperate to… what is it?… To feel FREE.  Free to be me on my terms.  Haha.  Not really the “life context” of a (single) mother of a two and five year old.  When shit gets bad, I feel this wave of violence overtake me and I literally have to raise my hands to the heavens, as if begging for the Gods to intervene.  It works.  Mostly.  

Anyway, even though I wanted to finish my writing in the morning, Serena was content to be near me, watching cartoons.  Her satisfaction and delight were palpable.  Then as soon as Forest returned home, she flew south for the winter.  Meaning she lost her shit at every turn.  Well that’s clear communication.  Having a little brother has been a wound for her to contend with.  And a gift.  Their love spans the chasm where light and shadow merge.

Later in the morning we went to ecstatic dance.  Rachel, my neighbor, friend and life-line to California, organized it (at my urging).  ‘Member when I told you that I was exploring possibilities of who Serena could live with if I died?  Well Mirabai has first (and only) place at the moment.  But honestly, I am so focused on healing, I have not been paying much attention to that.  I just brought it up because Mirabai is a professional tango dancer.  And as soon as she entered my field, I realized DANCING will save my life.  I’m not kidding. TANGO, people!  The most passionate dance there is.  The message sunk straight into my soul:  Dance or Die, Bitch.

But what I didn’t know is how light and freeee I would feel on the dance floor!  Fuck those words “light” and “freeee” because you have heard them so many times that your mind slid right over them without barely registering the MIRACULOUS nature of lightness and freeness.  It was the REAL easter.  Resurrection at it’s finest.  

Ok, this is where I break a sweat.  Coaxing the english language to do justice to a physical, emotional and spiritual experience….

It was a small group of women (maybe seven?), which made it an entirely safe container for full expression.  There was plenty of space and I enjoyed it thoroughly.  Every song on Rachel’s playlist rubbed me the right way (not such a common experience at ecstatic dance).  `I am noticing and affirming ease these days, and there was a delicious feeling of ease about being on the dance floor.  hOMe.  

I was WITH myself.  At a level I have never experienced in this body, in this life.  An unprecedented fullness, peace, kindness.  Eyes closed, a voice inside me whispered “I feel like a STAR”.  I told that voice, “YOU ARE A STAR”.  And in the lucid floodlight of my own self-granted permission, I came alive at a whole nother level.  I resurrected the young one who received the message that it’s not ok to shine.  (Little Dawniecakes spent her “childhood career” being invisible because she didn’t feel safe)  My desire is that my full self expression will liberate others ready to emerge from their self-imposed cage and FLY. 

I haven’t seriously danced since before Serena was born… I’m pretty sure… although committing that to “paper”, it looks absurd.  Pure sin.  “Looks to be”… but in actuality, it was a potent barometer of my growth.  The version of me who existed six years ago, though she gave as much of herself to her dance as she was able, there were many “inner rooms” which were still locked.  This translated as a lot of my energy “going out”- like long, curious fingers groping about the “otherness” in the room.  All this externalized awareness was exhausting.  Don’t get me wrong… I still LOVED dancing… but I could only access a limited amount of my SELF.

Time Keeps A-Sweepin’

Realizing it’s now July.  Noticing I get so excited about the passage of time, but why?  It’s like I’m sprinting down the echoing breezeway of Life, my little worn out moccasins making explosive shouts as they slap and slap and slap the concrete beneath me.  Where am I running to with such urgency?  Back to God, I suppose, but in that case, the joke is definitely on me… because… running to the “end” will not get me any closer to the All Pervading Yard Duty.  Being still might.  Letting my intense yearning split me down the middle might… But certainly not fast forwarding in a single bolt of lightening strife to the illusory ego-fever-dreamish end of Life.

I wrote that first paragraph fresh out of bed.  But that’s all that revealed its self, so I cut myself some slack and took a chill pill instead of squeezing out the entire blog by six am.  Fed, watered and clean as a squeaking, queenly Disney heroine on ice, I am now nestled just south of peaceful at Pizzaiolo.  Still trying to carve out my safe nook in the chaos.  Today’s Course in Miracles lesson made me shake and combust in my sleek space boots.  It was about becoming consumed, devoured, swallowed by God’s name, and therefore my name, your name, OUR sacred name.  Letting my thirst for the One drive me over the edge of illusion’s steep ravine into the oceanic, All Pervading Void.  I think that’s a splendid idea!  I accept!  And now I sit in witness of this ceaseless swish of activity and I burn to see only All Pervading Holy Me… in every single face.  And in the faceless space between heavenly bodies.  This mission requires frequent breathing.

The energy feels so agitating.

Ahhhh, blessed be.  A luminous man from Mykael’s men’s circle just came in and sat across from me!  I offered him a poem.  He accepted.  I asked him to spill the contents of his heart and mind out onto the table between us and he generously poured out a story that went like this~ tomorrow he is flinging himself bold and brave into the unknown folds of Life.  He’s subletting his home for the summer and journeying to Eselen to do work trade.  He feels the blissful sting of change, the inevitable fear-stained tickle of letting go into the unknown.  As he talked, I began to see images of verdant, beautifully tended gardens at dawn.  A bead of dew sliding helplessly graceful down a virile green leaf.  I’ll tell ya WHAT~ writing poetry on the fly is the ultimate exercise in trusting my mind, my imagination.  It always shows me things.  My only job is to tune in, listen, look inside and say YES.  I find it sorta unbelievable.  Entirely miraculous. Risky.  So alive.

As I smacked out the poem, my own heart unfolded, petal by meticulous petal into full bloom.  By the time I finished, I was ecstatic.  This is alchemy at its finest!  Remember, I was choking on the chaos, struggling to find my place.  Then in the next instant, I was blessed by the holy opportunity to let the All Pervading Poet bestow a sacred blessing through me.  I want to leap into the sky and give God a violent high five!  Win for the team!!!  Hmmm… I don’t really know what else to say after that.  I guess I’ll just toss out RosyMoon’s poem request about aging and mortality and call it a day.

She gazed at what legend had it

was her own face,

curious, blinking and flat

upon the reflective glass

she came to know as

“herself”.

Myopic, scrutinous she drank

modest sips of an image breathing

as it shot,

slow and soft

through Time’s winding mind.

Judging eyes

scoured the deepening story lines

upon her tale of skin,

vacillating in a ceaseless pulse

of approval

and disdain passed down

from mothers upon mothers

upon sisters and brothers

in this epic dream

of embodied God long forgotten

in the folds of endless division.

Distracted by a fresh

though not so fragrant spray

of thoughts,

she reached for a the hairbrush

to her left and swept

it through a tangled mane.

It sang crunching songs

as it tamed her external wilderness.

Blinking, she slicked

a colored stain across lips familiar

as her own name.

Grasping for an unchanging taste

of her beauty she stood

in wait.

Another moment, another day

half asleep, oblivious to

the truth hidden within

the ambiguous, eternal something lurking

just beyond her hungry

slow

decaying reflection.

God, thank you for another beautiful day to remember you, to serve you, to spin time and space into Love on the loom of Forgiveness.  Amen.