Posted January 25, 2013
This week during Wild Writing we were given the prompt “clicking clicking” a taken from a Marie Howe poem. I admit though that I thought about naming it “This is Your Brain Online.”
We are to take the prompt and write, non-stop, for 15 minutes. We are to write quickly, pen not leaving the paper, so as to short-circuit our inner-cleverness and attempts to be ‘good’ writers.
What I wrote is true. What I wrote is not a ‘whoa is me’ whine. It’s not a complaint. It’s an extraction of my own monkey mind shared in service of all of our awakening.
I’m sharing it because I want to remind us all that we’re not so different from each other. I’m sharing it because I want to highlight the deafening noise so many of us choose to live with. I’m sharing it because I want to encourage all of us to take a stand against the draining of our ease.
Posted January 3, 2013
Posted June 6, 2012
Posted March 7, 2012
I spent my junior year of college suffering from anorexia.
I spent my senior year full steam ahead in my recovery.
One of the most helpful parts of my recovery was reading.
I borrowed every book in entire state of Ohio college and university library consortium on eating disorders (from memoir to clinical manual), feminism, and spirituality. I simply devoured information as if my life depended on making sense of myself – because it did.
Back then I’d go to the pick-up desk at my school’s library nearly each day and sink into my latest arrivals. One of the books that arrived was Patricia Lynn Reilly’s Imagine a Woman in Love with Herself: Embracing Your Wisdom and Wholeness. Reilly takes a astonishingly deep and astute poem she wrote and turnes each stanza into a fully fleshed out chapter exploring qualities that encourage women to love themselves and steer the ship of their lives.
In the song “Killing Me Softly” by the Fugees, Lauryn Hill croons “…singing my life with his words…”
That’s how I felt when I read this poem – like Patricia Lynn Reilly was singing my life with her words.
10 years later my heart feels full when I see that I no longer have to imagine this woman.
I am this woman.
If you’re not familiar with “Imagine a Woman” I’m excited to introduce you…
“Imagine a Woman I”
Imagine a woman who believes it is right and good she is a woman.
A woman who honors her experience and tells her stories.
Who refuses to carry the sins of others within her body and life.
Imagine a woman who trusts and respects herself.
A woman who listens to her needs and desires.
Who meets them with tenderness and grace.
Imagine a woman who acknowledges the past’s influence on the present.
A woman who has walked through her past.
Who has healed into the present.
Imagine a woman who authors her own life.
A woman who exerts, initiates, and moves on her own behalf.
Who refuses to surrender except to her truest self and wisest voice.
Imagine a woman who names her own gods.
A woman who imagines the divine in her image and likeness.
Who designs a personal spirituality to inform her daily life.
Imagine a woman in love with her own body.
A woman who believes her body is enough, just as it is.
Who celebrates its rhythms and cycles as an exquisite resource.
Imagine a woman who honors the body of the Goddess in her changing body.
A woman who celebrates the accumulation of her years and her wisdom.
Who refuses to use her life-energy disguising the changes in her body and life.
Imagine a woman who values the women in her life.
A woman who sits in circles of women.
Who is reminded of the truth about herself when she forgets.
Imagine yourself as this woman.
“Imagine a Woman II”
Imagine a woman who is interested in her own life.
A woman who embraces her life as teacher, healer, and challenge.
Who is grateful for the ordinary moments of beauty and grace.
Imagine a woman who participates in her own life.
A woman who meets each challenge with creativity.
Who takes action on her own behalf with clarity and strength.
Imagine a woman who has crafted a fully-formed solitude.
A woman who is available to herself.
Who chooses friends and lovers with the capacity to respect her solitude.
Imagine a woman who acknowledges the full range of human emotion.
A woman who expresses her feelings clearly and directly.
Who allows them to pass through her as naturally as the breath.
Imagine a woman who tells the truth.
A woman who trusts her experience of the world and expresses it.
Who refuses to defer to the perceptions, thoughts, and responses of others.
Imagine a woman who follows her creative impulses.
A woman who produces original creations.
Who refuses to color inside someone else’s lines.
Imagine a woman who has relinquished the desire for intellectual approval.
A woman who makes a powerful statement with every action she takes.
Who asserts to herself the right to reorder the world.
Imagine a woman who has grown in knowledge and love of herself.
A woman who has vowed faithfulness to her own life.
Who remains loyal to herself. Regardless.
Imagine yourself as this woman.
Somehow Imagine a Woman slipped my mind when I put together my list of life-changing books. It should absolutely be on this list:
Posted November 18, 2011
In preparation for my 2012 Well-Fed Woman Mini-Retreatshop tour I’ve been mining the road of life that’s brought me here. I’ve been talking to friends about what they remember. I’ve been listening to Gail Larsen’s amazing Transformational Speaking, and I dug out a sizable box of old journals and have been reading through them. There’s a lot of beauty and sadness on these pages. There is also this poem. It appears to have been written in early February 2006. I don’t recall what it was about but rereading it moved me. It’s kind of like seeing yourself in a video doing things you have no recollection doing and yet you can’t refute that it’s you on the screen. Here are my words, new to you and to me…
Dance we will
between the nervous unknown
the vastness we’ll unveil
and then like sinking into
wet sand we’ll slip into
the cellular awareness that
all our toils had purpose
wisdom designed to merge
When we meet
we’ll both stop to look back
over our shoulder
smiling in the distance we’ll
breathe easy at the far off mountain ranges we’ve summited
When we meet
it will be a being – not a
over runny eggs and toast
We’ll be deep in the Sunday papers
We’ll be whole and shameless –
both fully aware of our lovability – and ability to love
Smiling at the perfection -
the amazing flawlessness of our total being of
When we meet
ours will be beautiful.
Posted November 10, 2011
I care. I care about you.
I care about you being at ease in your own skin as you walk towards the kitchen, your closet, your office, your yoga mat, your first date, or the podium.
I care about you being so at ease inside your self that you’re available to life. inherent in which is service.
I care about you coming to know yourself not only as friend rather than foe, but as lover.
I care about you fully expressing your unique wave in this divine ocean we’re a part of.
I care about your knowing that you are just like me and I am just like you. In fact, we are the same.
I care about you swimming with the tide of your precious life. down stream. turned by rapids. in flow. towards your own estuary of creativity.
I care about you looking first towards yourself for that which you look upon another to provide.
I care about where you source your power and whether it’s sustainable or inspiring to you.
I care about you knowing that love is always in the room.
I care about you knowing that if you never leave yourself, you need never fear being alone.
I care about you cashing in your permission slips. they are already signed by virtue of your sovereignty.
I care about you. I care.
Posted May 19, 2011
the truth remains.
Faith is knowing
we are each a mighty and unique wave in the ocean of godalmightymotherspiritholydivine (or whatever you call It)
that if we look around and appear to be a muddy puddle
faith is the knowing we’ve just lost our way
and what we see is simply not so.
Faith is knowing the dwelling that is eternally home.
Faith is knowing.
And through faith we return again and again to the reality of love.
Posted April 1, 2011