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Thursday, November 27, 2014

Travelling Again

I'm on the road and in the air today, heading to Long Island, New York to visit my daughter and  her family.   I'm looking forward to seeing all of them today.  

Oh yes, today is the day.  

So far, my flights are still on time and going.

Send me off with wishes for good weather, or at least good enough to be able to fly.

Wednesday, November 26, 2014


After the harvest and before the snow comes, 
November offers soft shades and muted beauty 
everywhere I look.

Tuesday, November 25, 2014


When I think I have everything in my life figured out, I discover I have been examining too closely.  

I have looked at minute details, become too serious and forgotten the larger perspectives.  

I step back.  And suddenly, I see how varied, expansive and beautiful the world really is.

Monday, November 24, 2014


When you think you are falling apart, look again.  
You change into another form of your self, 
beautiful and free.

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Atlantic Books Today

You know those contests in which you just sign in, sign on, sign up and perhaps you'll win a prize, but never do? Well, I won.

The prize?  A 49th Shelf prize pack of books written by local authors.  What fun! 

Now I have:   how the gods pour tea by Lynn Davies
                       Savage Love by Douglas Glover
                       My White Planet by Mark Anthony Jarman
                       Grist by Linda Little
                       Portrait of Julia by Robert MacNeil
                       an "I Read Local" button
                       a cloth bag for my books

Happy reading for me.  Thank you Atlantic Books Today and 49th Shelf.

Just when you think you'll never win one of those contests...

Words in coloured print will take you to another site with additional information, if you click on them.

Thursday, November 20, 2014

We've Got Weasels

Well, not really.  We have ermines, not weasels but the w's went together so much better in the title.  

I posted on facebook this week about my encounter with an ermine; me on one side of the door with a camera and four cats trying to escape and give chase, and the ermine on the other side looking for a place to hide from the blue jays and crows harassing it.

Since then, I've been thinking about this lithe and lovely visitor at my door.  I've lived here for nearly ten years and this is the first time I've seen an ermine.  They are brown in summer and white in winter.  This one was white on a day that the snow had fallen and melted so stood out like a flash of light in a drab landscape.

I've never outgrown my need to know why... about everything.  Just ask my husband.  So why has this critter shown up in my life now? 

Yes, I know.  It was searching for food and our wooded yard provides lots of opportunities to find mice and voles.  There are plenty of squirrel tunnels under the rock walls on the property.

But on another level, why has the ermine shown up in my life and why now?

Ted Andrews in his book Animal Speak suggests that these creatures represent gracefulness, silence and solitariness.  People with this totem "uncover a lot about people in their lives as their ability for silence enables them to go unseen and unheard, even in the company of others.  Powers of silent observation sniff out what is hidden or secretive without anyone being the wiser."

He asks these questions.  "Are you not digging hard enough?  Is there a narrow space you may have to squeeze through?  Are you missing the obvious?  Are others around you being fully honest? Are you trusting your own feelings and senses--regardless of others?"

Something to think about.  And I do like to hang on like a weasel to new ideas.  Ahem, like an ermine.

Words in colour will take you to another site with additional information, if you click on them.  This photo is blurry because both the ermine and I were moving fast.  I feel lucky to have been offered the chance to take this photo.

Monday, November 17, 2014

November Evening

November evenings offer muted colour; evergreens against the ghostly outline of deciduous trees.  The leafless trees, at rest for the winter, comfort me, give me permission to drop responsibilities, to focus inward and rest.  

To rest and let go.  

Rest and be.

Sunday, November 16, 2014

Friday, November 14, 2014

What is Actually There?

We release our expectations of what we think we should see, and then see what is actually there.

Thursday, November 13, 2014

Time Out of Time

One of the great gifts of art-making is an experience of "forgetting" ourselves and our self-consciousness, and stepping into something much bigger.  Photography can connect us to time out of time. (Quote from Eyes of the Heart by Christine Valters Paintner)

Like photography, poetry is a tender process.  We forget ourselves and let go of expectations, experience light and shadow, storytelling and re-framing, experience something new or something familiar in a new way.

Both photography and poetry offer a fresh mirror back to us.

Words in coloured text will take you to another site with additional information, if you click on them.

Monday, November 3, 2014

Prepare for the Coming Season

This chipmunk lives in our rock walls, one of many small animals who cohabit this property.  

As we prepare for winter, bring in outdoor furniture, wrap fragile shrubs, trim branches, mulch leaves, we let the chipmunks and squirrels harvest anything they want and need from our yard. They've cleaned off the grapes and are gathering rowan berries, stag-horn sumac cones, acorns, evergreen cones, and barberry bush fruits.

This little fellow's pouches are swollen with loot, to stock his larder for the long cold months ahead. Good for him!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

See with Fresh Eyes

See with fresh eyes and be open to possibilities, ready to receive what is offered.  

Sit with the gifts, notice the seeds of photos and poetry. 

On Friday, the surprises were chickadees at the birdbath and a poem about reflections on glassy water.

The photography weekend continues to offer its lessons, the most wonderful being an increased awareness of the world inside me and the reflections outside me.

I am grateful for this attuned vision and for the delightful company of chickadees.  

Saturday, November 1, 2014

Photography and Poetry

Photography can be a practice of cultivating the capacity to see things as they really are.  

Poetry, if written well, can be the same. 

Both offer new awareness, share the essence of truth, open the heart.

Allow a pathway inward to the a-ha moment.