Monday, June 28, 2010


I had a dream that I was small and dense--just a cell,
a dwarfed red star.
My sensing split apart and became specialized. In the detail,
in the unknowing, I found myself alone and blind and focusing, focusing,
like a manic lens trying to find the best, best picture. I didn't know I was such a creator of worlds,
such a master of complexity!

New roads, new angles, old dreams reborn in a new skin, having lost all the fat of youth,
recognizable only with my lenses closed and the cell walls open. They taste of old granite,
baby cedar and spirit medicine. They smell of life and death
at thirty-three thousand feet.

Oh yeah, I know this place.
I know this place. It feels familiar because it is!

Here is the ancient mother, and I remember she must enter so that I may cling,
the baby to her back, the rider to her horse, the dye to her wool to her grass to her sun--
any way, any way I choose--just see her in. 
Just let her know in her way, the slow way, the way of the full-hand radiating, the way of the
feet-shifting-hips-swaying, of the details cast like pollen on her ocean, of the patterning taken as a matter of course; but swirl-course, sound falling, mouth forming visions.

In this way, in the sweet blindness, I recognize the pulsing red star by feel, by beat, by gravity.
Center of my world.
Mother of all hearts.

Thursday, June 24, 2010

An Engaging Tale

The most basic story we live is that of relationship. Without an assumption of initial separation, there is no plot, no play, no beginning or end. There is no leaving, staying, resolution or reunion; there is no vision-quest, no initiation into Elderhood, no welcome-back as a seasoned warrior of the soul.

All the richness, all the creativity we know springs from behind the premise of the falling-apart and coming-together of universes, planets, countries, societies, families, couples, individuals, atoms, philosophies, theories...and our relationship to these relationships. The story is infinitely complex--and quite simple, when boiled down to myself/life.

Even that basic duality is an "illusion", as any deep diver will tell you; life seamlessly and completely lives you, even as you live it. No exceptions, and nothing else to say. To arrive in such a union, confronted with the fact that no one ever actually went anywhere, is a marvelously ticklish feeling...and to rest there is what brings real stability in the midst of seeming chaos. Somehow, there is a center from which I can survey all my parts and personalities, including all things I call "other", knowing full well that I am this simultaneousness, all this sensory flow. Nothing to do, and nothing (still) to say. 

But express we must. Story, we do. There is nothing wrong with participation in the Great Play. It's our unconscious acting that tends to create such difficulty in our personal unconsciousness that seems to be as necessary as any element in a fully-functioning Being. Fortunately, an equal measure of awareness, of waking to ourselves, is present and alive--going out of its way, it seems, to grab our attention and expand our sense of self to a truer measure. 

All that is required is engagement. A long, much celebrated engagement--a face-to-face in all senses of the word, embracing both the promise of union and battle.

Alas, this is the part where we tend to "chicken out". This chapter is full of wild swings of bliss and loss, where our hero and/or heroine might be diagnosed as somehow schizophrenic (bipolar, at least!) by those whose opinions and approval seem to matter the most...and perhaps even dismissed as hopeless or dangerous! Think Romeo and Juliet, or David and Goliath, or Us and Them. Epic stuff. Hard work.

Never mind that. It's really just self and Self, doing this--you know, human and Divine. Futility and Meaning. 

A full engagement is simply a willingness to be open, suspending disbelief, allowing the lovers their space in the middle of the stand AS that fine line between anything and anything else, undefended and central to absolutely everything. A full engagement is faith in action--a faith that might resemble utter foolishness to a stout ego, dumb persistence in peering through the walls of limitation until it is understood that The Unlimited is exactly where we're peering from

The truth, both personal and universal, blossoms here. The truth, by its deepest nature, doesn't just make a brief seasonal appearance in a divided mind, but sends roots and seeds and scent, broadcasting presence and signaling nourishment, beauty and potential meaning. 
What is True is the original relationship between bright light and dark humus--fresh air and composting forms, bursting forth as newly creative being. It's alright to be a flash-point, an incubator, a catalyst, a mysterious bio-psycho-emotive mystery in which many tales unfold. There is, in fact no other way than this!

Feel it. :)

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Speaking Personally

Dear Friends, Family and Facebook connections (past, present and future),

(A couple of good friends over on Facebook created a group called "Art of a Beautiful Mind", in which some of my art and writing is being "exposed to the world" directly and through a link to this blog. I am honored that they did this, and quite flattered that so many people felt the urge, for whatever reason, to "belong" to this group.  I'm glad, because this is a personal note to anyone who cares to listen--at this point, the more people, the better. :)

The "Beautiful Mind" referred to belongs not to me, the "artist/writer", but to Us, all of us who read ourselves and paint our lives and so shape our Being. If you look at a piece of art or read a story and feel a response, it's because you are recognizing a part of yourself, growing and perfecting it by sensing and experiencing. It takes all the levels of our Universal Self to make beauty and meaning. It takes an infinite number of connections that we are scarcely aware of to make a personal "wow" moment. Each of us are artists in our own right.

I am aware of this, being a "contemplative" sort; I am also aware that all kinds of connections need to be created and honored in order to invite and expand a beautiful life. I talk about it often.

But talk, as they say, can be cheap. 

Recently, like most of us, I have been fielding some pretty harrowing changes in my life. More quickly than I would ever imagine, the new growth of understanding is springing out of the ashes of loss. Things burn down, sometimes, so you can see better. Hearts break to make room. A series of events has conspired to bring the last several years into high relief, and I am getting a very clear picture of my personal life--some shades of which are indescribably sad.

The sadness comes from the fact that I have not taken my own advice and courted the many faces of Joy--instead, I managed to wrap myself like a frayed rope around the axle of other people's difficult issues. I do this because I am a "caregiver", professionally and habitually; it would be almost fair to say that I was brought up that way, and it has become my primary mode of operation. Although I find this to be satisfying and even rewarding, I forget, most of the time, to care for if my perception could somehow be removed from the equation of reality--as if my life was somehow irrelevant to living.

I need to knock that off, some very kind souls have informed me, and have some fun! Oh, how right, how wise they are!

Like many "creative types", I enjoy time alone to think, dream and work things out; but there has been a huge imbalance, a lack of real contact and manifestation of heart-stuff into the physical. When I have the time, I paint or write my soul into view, perhaps throwing words and images out like confetti on an ocean. I sit and watch it float away...then I put on my serious business-body, in which a longing for friendship and connection sometimes runs around like an errant ragamuffin, and do errands, and take care of other words, I need to dance more (not just with myself), and stop shushing my own singing (even though I can't really sing). 

I want to talk to people who feel a deep sense of health in the world, even through the apparent sickness running rampant like a designer virus targeting the Heart. If you can't feel it, the natural pulse, then beauty is fleeting and appreciation becomes a manipulative game. I am interested in seeing the genuine love that we are, somewhere, loosed in eyes, in hugs, in smiles, in compassionate holding of peace, in wild leaps and twirls...

I want to hang out, once in a while, with those who agree that working at the mini-mart selling moon pies, Red Bull and bottled (sheesh, it should be free!) water to the desperate or despondent public would be an absolutely irresponsible thing for Maria to do, since what I truly enjoy is a freely creative life--even if my back is up against a financial wall!

I want to hold the hand of someone who understands Us as lovely facets of a Big Love, which cradles our unique patterns in a tough/tender way, and nourishes us by allowing like-minded souls to flow together for a second or a century...

I want to be in the company of the Fearlessly Courageous, who have determined that Being really is worth waking up for, if only to see or do something new and different, or repeat something that genuinely works to add dimension and beauty to the day...

I want to find people who can laugh at their own cynicism, because they know the depth and eternal freshness of loving.

I know you all are out there; chances are good that you are reminding someone like me to stop being so cloistered, to stop pacing the confines of some closet, to lighten up on the tasking. You are extending an invitation to stand up and dance, to see the pain for exactly what it is, to flirt with Joy until she follows and waits at every possible stop. Bless you for caring, for challenging my comfort zones, for leading me with astonished mirth and the balance of a veteran co-creator, for stepping back and allowing me to find my footing...

May we continue to ask for help if we're lost, find and recognize each other!

Love and Blessings,

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Rocky Mountain High

Last week, I took my great blank slate, my flood-plain heart and furrowed mind to higher ground in Colorado. I went to visit my brother, with no agenda and no idea what each day might bring. In such a perfect state of non-expectation, lessons abound and are painted in deep, rich tones...there is nothing pale or tentative about mountain love. 
It will pick you up and drop you if you can't find trust.
It's a long way to the bottom.
                                                                 Birth never ends.

Life always seems to be waiting, though, at the end of the crazy passages...
I'm looking at the view, thus it looks right back. No lack of eye contact here!
I marvel at the tenacious springing of tender things (like myself), hanging on in the most unlikely, seemingly hostile places. Everywhere, there seems to be a natural urge... leap out of the earth (so curvaceous and craggy is She!)...
                                                             ...and DANCE!

The stretching, the reaching for who-knows-what, to get to the top of who-knows-where, only to find some other height before you, is natural and essential.
                                                    So are the resting places...
...and the sight, sound and feel of the rush.

                      (Alright, there may be dragons!)
                                     Even a rough climb down is worth the risk!
 I survived the rib-cracking, granite-style bear hugs, the harsh lectures of staying up all night (what, at my age?!), and the evidence of ongoing birth and death on every path. This place is haunted with kills by cougar and weather and the brutal falls borne out of human arrogance and lack of common sense; the sun is so bright that I could see details of myself--flaws and intricacies both ugly and sublime--whether I wanted to, or not.

The last full day of my adventure, the medicine was sweet, and the mountains wore a bit of velvet, in a softer light. Sunshine condensed into flowers, bright souls dancing down the slopes, perching happily on all the edges. I pass them on, directly to you from my heart, scraped clean and still quite alive...

                                                                          Peace. :)