She was alone,
In her cabin, with the moon.
The way one is alone with a cat.
Photo by Ron Worobec
People often say that beauty is in the eye of the beholder, and I say that the most liberating thing about beauty is realizing that you are the beholder.
~ Salma Hayek
“The sea drove me away
& yelled ‘Go to your desire!”
—As I hurried up the valley
It added one last yell:-
~Jack Kerouac, Big Sur, The Sea
Creativity is a shapechanger. One moment it takes this form, the next that. It is like a dazzling spirit who appears to us all, yet is hard to describe for no one agrees on what they saw in that brilliant flash. Are the wielding of pigments and canvas, or paint chips and wallpaper, evidence of its existence? How about pen and paper, flower borders on the green path, building a university? Yes, yes. Ironing a collar well, cooking up a revolution? Yes. Touching with love the leaves of a plant, pulling down ‘the big deal’, tying off the loom, findings one’s voice, loving someone well? Yes. Catching the hot body of the newborn, raising a child to adulthood, helping raise a nation from its knees? yes. Tending to a marriage like the orchard it is, digging for psychic gold, finding the shapely word, sewing a blue curtain? All are of the creative life. All these things are from the Wild Woman, the Rio Abajo Rio, the river beneath the river, which flows and flows into our lives.
Some say the creative life is in ideas, some say it is in doing. It seems in most instances to be in a simple being. It is virtuosity, although that is very fine in itself. It is the love of something, having so much love for something—whether a person, a word, an image, an idea, the land, or humanity—that all that can be done with the overflow is to create. It is not a matter of wanting to, not a singular act of will; one solely must.
The creative force flows over the terrain of our psyches looking for the natural hallows, the arroyos, the channels that exist in us. We become its tributaries, its basins; we are its pools, ponds, streams, and sanctuaries. The wild creative force flows into whatever beds we have, those we are born with as well as those we dig with our own hands. We don’t have to fill them, we only have to build them.
~Clarissa Pinkolo Estes, Ph.D., Women Who Run With the Wolves
There is a rest in brokenness. You lie on that ground, unable to function as you did before. So you lie there. There are no more ‘shoulds’ because the luxury of self-recrimination was taken from you when you fell and broke to pieces on the earth below. ‘Cannot’ doesn’t matter now, either. All that exists in this moment is ‘What Is Now.’ This. And there is beauty in the brokenness. It i a beauty of constellations in the scars, of tides in the tears, the heat of fire in the bleeding of you. In the abrupt quiet that follows an unexpected injury, a sacred silence fills you. And because there is nothing let in you that can create, push, force, be, or drive into, there is a blessed empty space, to be filled by something other than all the crazed and busy thinking, the manic achieving, the over-scheduled hours. This blessed, beautiful brokenness is the prayer that summons the spirit, calls forth the angels, lays us down gently. In these seasons of humble brokenness, we are opened, utterly. There is no protecting yourself here. This is the stripping away of ego-driven, striving conception. Let there be grace. Let there be mercy. Allow the broken places to show you their beautiful rest.
The broken stick on the forest floor is the branch who earned her rest. I bless the stick. I bless the branch. I bless the rest.
~Sarah LaRosa, We’Moon
I am Hygieia, Goddess of Health and Healing.
Not so very long ago people revered me and danced, dreamed and prayed with passionate fervor in my name.
And now? My sister called me up yesterday, “Hey girl have you noticed how people are using your name these days? Check out this link.”
Hmmmm…Hygiene. Sleep hygiene. Sleep hygiene rules. A list of rules in my name. Do this, this and this. Do not do that, that or that. Hygiene: antiseptic, clean, controlled, sterile, sanitized. They’ve named damn sleep hygiene rules after me that don’t even seem to work because sixty million people in the United States alone can’t sleep!
Let me remind you who I really am. I am Hygieia, Goddess of Health and Healing. I lived for centuries with my twin sister Panacea in the temples of our father, Asclepius, the doctor god. People traveled for weeks to our mystery rites to dance, pray and sleep among the priestesses and serpents, They came seeking guidance, miracles and transformation, awakening in the morning reborn, eager to face life with new vigor and vision. Our temples await you each night. You may enter any time.
Let’s go back even further, before the time of Asclepius: I am Hygieia, left breast of Rhea, Great Mother of All Beings. As we roam the earth’s sea islands and deep forests and vast plains, life-giving fluid pours from us–healing, soothing, nourishing and revitalizing.
Sleep with us and be reborn into eternal kinship with all creatures. Sleep with us in the temple of breast, mountain, ocean, belly. Savor here the messy, rich, potent sleep of body and earth. It is not a regulated, sterilized sleep. You will not find it in a sleep lab. It may just be the sleep your restlessness longs for.
~Lea Bayles, We’Moon
I shall make an Unholy mess
and scatter my imaginings
with powders and pigments
on a brush
of witch’s brew beginnings.
~Marie Rains, We’Moon