Life Living

The Speaking of the Tree

“There is a true yearning to respond to
The singing River and the wise Rock.
So say the Asian, the Hispanic, the Jew
The African, the Native American, the Sioux,
The Catholic, the Muslim, the French, the Greek
The Irish, the Rabbi, the Priest, the Sheik,
The Gay, the Straight, the Preacher,
The privileged, the homeless, the Teacher.
They hear. They all hear
The speaking of the Tree.” Maya Angelou

Here’s to a beautiful life and guardian of all things soul…

Life Living
jRuth Kelly – Copyright 2014

Enough Free People? No.

“After we protested and went to jail and then went to court and was—had a guilty verdict, right? That week, the president came to New York and said, ‘Edward Koch was one of the great mayors in the last 50 years,’ and then said, ‘Michael Bloomberg was a terrific mayor.’ Now, this is the same person saying we’ve got to care for black boys, and black boys are being intimidated, harassed, humiliated, 1,800 a day. It’s just not a matter of pretty words, Mr. President. You’ve got to follow through in action. You see, you can’t use the words to hide and conceal your mendacity, hypocrisy and the support of criminality—or enactment of criminality when it comes to drones, you see.

And the sad thing is, Sister Amy, is that we just don’t have enough free people, let alone free black people. Black people, we settled for so little, so we get a little symbolic gesture, we get a little identification, and like on MSNBC, which is part of the Obama plantation, they start breakdancing again: ‘Oh, isn’t it so wonderful? He’s really one of us. We can now wave the flag again. We can now support our mindless Americanism,’ in the language of my dear brother Maulana Karenga, intellectual that he is. No. We ought to be over against injustice, no matter what, across the board, and be vigilant about it. I don’t care what color the president or the governor or the mayor is.” — Cornel West in an interview with Amy Goodman of Democracy Now

International Women’s Day

Other than the ones I’ve deemed worthy, like birthdays and well, birthdays, (and when I was married, anniversaries) and the obligatory holidays, I don’t do pre-canned days, prescribed events, pre-planned observances, annual lah-tee-dahs…

Oh wait. But I do. I’m in this world and I provide social media support and that includes strategy and that involves well, today. And, it’s true, I do respect that these marked days draw our attention to what we might have otherwise taken for granted. But, for whatever reason, it’s not my natural inclination. My natural inclination is to go “Right, I need the world to set a date to remind me of what I value as if I wouldn’t otherwise? And I wouldn’t do anything about this otherwise, right? And, naturally, there’s something I should purchase today to show my dedication, sincerity, etc., right?” Yes. I can be that cynical and snotty.

But I do have nobler parts. And they’re in the game today and seeing it as something other than a GAME.

Here’s a lovely quote from Liza Donnelly I appreciate: “When you become a woman, there is no manual,  you have to figure out how to “do” being a women by doing it. You watch other women, read magazines, listen to your mother, sister, grandmother. You practice being a woman and adjust how you do it by the reactions you get. For example, wearing a really short skirt gets one kind of reaction from men, another reaction from women. By performing your gender, you learn how to “do” it from how others respond to you.

If there is one thing women have in common around the world, other than anatomy,  it is that we have to be constantly aware. Women need to be alert to their surroundings not only to avoid possible physical harm to their bodies, they have to be aware of whether or not they are performing their role as women correctly.  Because in many societies, if they do not perform their roles correctly, they can be ostracized, or much worse.  In many parts of the world, women are in constant danger because of their membership in this group.  In too many parts of the world, women are not free.”

She has a knack for drawing, to put it mildly: 

And then there’s a man I find perpetually addressing the heart of the matter, Jeff Brown: “Dear Divine Feminine, Me and my brothers are readying for our movement into the heart as a way of being. It’s a slow-winged process, but we are dropping down a little more with every lesson. Bless us with your ongoing support as we figure out how to feel our way home. We have some experience with the relational path, but not as much as you do. We have often moved with a heartfelt intention, but swimming in deep feeling is another experience entirely. We have been so vigilant for so long that it’s a challenge to relate to the moment vulnerably. We intuit that the life of the heart is the path home, but we need some time to embrace it, to integrate it, to understand how to move the way that loves makes you move. We have the willingness- we just have to learn how to convert our armoured nature into receptivity. We have for too long associated surrender with weakness. But it is not. It is the depths of courage- you have taught us that. Please be patient as we stumble back to our old patterns. We will not disappoint you, once we understand this new way. We will meet you there. At the gate to our shared heart.”

And it’s heart that keeps us busy with the work of respecting that somewhere in the layers of these nationally and internationally recognized days is a sincere opportunity to add a little extra love-in-action to what must be a perpetual mastery of the practice of love itself. That’s really what it’s all about. As idealistic and pollyanna la la la as it sounds, it’s a gritty, fierce, real, sometimes in-your-face, other times sweet sweat of work…love.

Directly Speaking…

‎”We waste so much energy trying to cover up who we are, when beneath every attitude is the want to be loved, and beneath every anger is a wound to be healed, and beneath every sadness is a fear that there will not be enough time.

When we hesitate in being direct, we unknowingly slip something on, some added layer of protection that keeps us from feeling the world, and often that thin covering is the beginning of a loneliness which, if not put down, diminishes our chances for joy. It’s like wearing gloves every time we touch something, and then, forgetting that we chose to put them on, we complain that nothing feels quite real.

In this way, our challenge each day is not to get dressed to face the world, but to unglove ourselves so that the doorknob feels cold, and the car handle feels wet, and the kiss goodbye feels like the lips of another being soft and unrepeatable.

As you breathe, let each breath undress your being–of attitude, of mood, of history.” – Mark Nepo

Inspiration isn’t happening these days, not in the form of writing, anyway. I get these moments of creative wonder and both hands are on the wheel of my car as I taxi someone somewhere or take myself across town. The moment passes and I face my keyboard with a fullness I can’t express. Not just yet. We writers do have our seasons of going simply on commitment. If we’ve the time. I have precious little these days.

This quote from Mark Nepo is a beautiful reminder of why we can take a deep breath and just be…unhindered. Even if all the writing projects are languishing somewhere under the rubble of too much to do.

Perpetual . . .

I love the continual underlying stirring vibe of this piece and how much it whispers of life and living itself… day in, day out, one foot, then the other and… and…

While we may rest in melodies more reposed and reflective, another melody is there, under the surface, stirring us into motion and passion, towards the next big expression of our love of life. And this is definitely the feel of my world lately…