Saturday, June 28, 2014

happy saturday

It is Saturday morning and my house remains mostly still.
I hear the wind moving in the soft leaves of the trees outside.
Once in a while a light breeze rushes through the open window.
I hear birds too, chirping and chattering a late morning song.
The day is ahead of me, but I feel content in this moment
standing in my kitchen
writing these brief words
letting the world move around me.


With gratitude,
Joanna

Thursday, June 26, 2014

sol.i.tude

the state or situation of being alone





{written last night}
 
 
 
 
This week did not bring inspiration.  In absence of inspiration seeps in the slight feeling of dread that I will never feel it again...my mind works even when working against itself. 
 
It is late in the evening now, on Wednesday, and I am tired.  But I sit up, dog sleeping at my feet, in the quiet house letting my mind ruminate.
 
And then my mind begins to move, I sit a little longer and then hasten for the stairs, for my notebook to write these words.  On my way I stop briefly in the two bedrooms of my three sleeping children, how wrapped in peace they are -- and rather than feeling jealous of their quietude I feel a glimmer of my own peace returning, a glimmer of my inspired mind returning.
 
I progress to my own room and wrap myself in my favorite shawl(yes I have a favorite shawl), and climb onto my bed.  My pen begins to flutter.  I write best on paper.  I enjoy the feeling of the pen moving across its surface, the slight scratching sound of that surface being altered, the ink being controlled by the movement of my hand;,the tangible turning of the page.
 
The house feels particularly quite tonight, it is a quite filled with peace -- I have not tried to fill it with doing.
 
I am in love with a little book that I am reading right now, Gift From the Sea, by Anne Morrow Lindbergh, 1955.  She relays so much wisdom, but one of those that has rung most true for me is the power and necessity of solitude. Solitude as food for the soul, as a place to find connection to oneself, as a place to feed the 'inner well'
 
She writes;
For it is not physical solitude that actually separates one from other men, not physical isolation, but spiritual isolation. It is not the desert island nor the stony wilderness that cuts you from the people you love. It is the wilderness in the mind, the desert wastes in the heart through which one wonders lost and a stranger. When one is a stranger to oneself then one is estranged from others too. If one is out of touch with oneself, then one cannot touch others...only when one is connected to ones own core is one connected to others, I am beginning to discover. And for me, the core, the inner spring, can best be refound through solitude.
 
The inner well for me is the place where the creative flame has the fuel to ignite, or perhaps the oxygen to ignite. It is the place where I feel me.  I am learning that I can not take myself there, I have to allow myself to be there. 
 
And so I found myself there tonight, discouraged in my lack of inspiration, I sat down and found myself doing nothing but being.
 
 
With gratitude,
Joanna
 


Thursday, June 19, 2014

To.day

on or in the course of this present day



Art journaling while making dinner with fresh veggies, those thirty toes running around needing more and less attention.  I am moving between all of these, settling into a space of me. The me that is cultivating this private world of open doors and cold, dirty floors; dirty happy children.

Today I was mom, museum, gardener, wife -- and in these spare moments between dinner and thirty toes I am an artist -- writing, thinking, moving in my own private world.

I love the smell of garlic on my hands, dropping the chopped bits into the heated oily pan and receiving a rush of sound and smell sensation.

I move between these tasks, gliding in the space of me, trying not to step beyond my boundaries -- my success can be circumstantial.

There are things scattered here and there, in and outside my house; tomato plants growing in a small plot of dirt on the porch, they had been meant for transplant.  I try to remind myself that these things are not items on a to-do list, they are the loves of my life...and my success can be circumstantial.

But today I feel like a person again. 


With gratitude,
Joanna

Friday, June 13, 2014

an ode to those who no longer serve us




An ode to those who no longer serve us
To the little professors who sit on our shoulders
Who critique our thoughts
Who make us doubt

To the voices that linger after us
That make us linger, rather than move forward

To the voices that are not ours
That over stay their welcome

Let us say goodbye to them


With gratitude,
Joanna

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

life leads us on






It is about nine in the evening, I step outside to briefly accompany the dog. I am  tired, but drawn to walk; I cross the yard and continue.  I love being outside in the dark open world.  When I was young it terrified me.  But now I find myself entranced -- moving through peace rather than thick trepidation. 

I call the dog to come with me; he hesitates and then darts along.  He was my companion before my family, before my marriage.  It is only occasionally that I walk with him alone now.  He represents independence the way that walking alone in the dark represents independence. 

I feel a piece of myself when I walk alone with my dog.

He is a happy family dog now, running and sniffing from grassy yard to grassy yard in the dark; leading the way as I walk slowly on, content.

I am a happy family woman now walking alone on an unlit road just past dusk; somewhere in the upper Midwest, a place that I never would have conjured from my imagination. 

Life leads us on.

I reach the end of the road and look out toward the small airstrip and fields beyond.  In the distance I see lights that I cannot identify and the silhouette of a tree line.  The sky is neither clear nor cloudy, the moon and a speckling of early stars shine through the haze.

I pause and then turn around calling my companion to come along.  He turns as well and traces back his steps sniffing and peeing his way along other peoples yards.

I walk at a moderate pace, mindful that my visiting mother does not know I left the house; soaking up the dark solitude.

I arrive at our yard and gaze across it at my universe, dimly lit, partially tidy, container of all meaningful moments.  I call my dog near as we reenter our mutual domain.  He trots close and I tell him he is good.



With gratitude,
Joanna