Sunday, January 8, 2017

Silhouette

“There is strong shadow where there is much light.” 
~ Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

I walked in where it was warm, and lingered a while.  Outside it was Beautiful - yet winter.

The walls were filled with photographs of summer.  Mountains and waterfalls, flowers and birds.

I happened to look up. 

Winter had added its own contribution, rivaling the rest.



Monday, January 2, 2017

Music, Interwoven

“If I had my life to live over again, I would have made a rule to read some poetry and listen to some music at least once every week.”~ Charles Darwin

Some weeks ago my main cable TV connection went out.  The wiring into the home, I had been told last year, was not up to the standards of the latest equipment, but it had managed to work for a long while.  It actually worked fine until it was necessary to disconnect it briefly one day, and then it was never really the same again, and very soon, it gave out completely.  I decided not to reconnect it.

At first I missed it.

You see, somehow I had apparently stopped noticing the noise.  And when the noise was gone, it felt very strange.  The noise was actually generally the cable news spouting opinions about the state of the world - because "the news" isn't "the news" anymore and probably never was, but nowadays it doesn't even pretend to be "news" - it's shrill opinion, with a little "news" mixed in, no matter what the leanings of the "news station".

It turns out I didn't need it.  I learn what small amount of "actual news" I need to know in other ways.  Yes, I missed the old movies I liked to watch on TCM, but that's why we have libraries and DVDs.  And even those were tending to distract me.  So were other forms of talk, at the times I didn't need to hear it (as a radio host myself, I know helpful conversations have their place, but we need to personally respect what that place is).

I needed the Peace.  I needed the Stillness.

When family is here, we needed the Stillness, too, especially during dinner.  We used to be tempted to turn on the TV and generally watch "the news".

So what are evenings like now?

Musical.  Beautifully Musical. 

I realized one night it is shared, well beyond this home.  When I turn on the local Classical station, like I did on both Christmas and New Year's Eve (and Christmas and New Year's night, too, and all of the nights in between), it's like going to a concert.  (It's on at times during the day too, in between sometimes switching the station to Jazz.  It's on right now.)  When you are listening to a particularly good station, it has a way of surprising you - you come to realize the Music is lovingly woven together by the hosts, over time, night after night after night and day after day (the hosts are actually artists and composers themselves - that's what the weaving is).  You yourself become woven into the form.  It becomes inextricable.

There is something here that I've been missing.  I've felt I've known it before, and then somehow I lost it.  But I have found it, again. 

I'm reading more.  I'm feeling personally poetic (though I've been no stranger to poetry).   I'm even blogging right now (though I've been no stranger to writing).

It is changing me.  I feel it, already.  There is a new pattern.  There is a Divine majesty to it.  There is a kind of an unfolding.  It's like walking in Nature.  Perhaps it's just Beauty, and a kind of re-centering.

It is Still, even when not.

How is it the Music connects me even more to "the world" than "the news"?   Yet, exactly, so, it is.

Sunday, January 1, 2017

Robin Dear...A Joyful Sign for the New Year!

"All the world is fresh and sweet...flowers blossom at my feet..." 
~ from a song about Robins in Springtime my mother taught me as a young child

Observed outside my window, just a few minutes ago....


While growing up in Colorado, the first Robin of the year was indicative of Spring, but here in the Pacific Northwest, it is never really winter. So perhaps the sign here for the New Year is to look for "Spring" each and every day!   (And remember, other seasons are nice, too!)

P.S.  Upon searching for the song I learned as a child, I was quite surprised I couldn't find it online!  I only found inexact fragments from schoolbooks dating to 1907.  This is my best recollection from the age of 3 or so, as my mother helped me to sing this song over and over and over again multiple years in a row (a few words highlighted with [] may not be exact, but very close)...when I would forget the words from the previous year, she would remind me.  I would like this to be preserved somewhere for history because it was a real song I learned around 1967, almost surely taught to my mother when she was a young child of immigrants in the New York City area (probably just across the border in New Jersey) around 1930-33.

Robin dear, I love you so
I really wonder if you know
Where the [little] flowers grow
Hidden deep beneath the snow

I've been waiting for your coming, Robin dear
And I know you're [singing,] singing Spring is near   [?]

All the world is fresh and sweet
Flowers blossom at my feet
Life [in] Joy is so complete  [?]
Robin dear!

Wednesday, November 9, 2016

On This Day, November 9

"Shining true and smiling back at all who wait to cross.  There is no loss." 
~ Kansas, The Wall

On This Day in History, November 9, 1989: "East German officials today opened the Berlin Wall, allowing travel from East to West Berlin..." 

And that's not all this date carries, for those who might look, for those who remember.

We get to choose.

We get to choose what sort of a November 9 THIS one is going to be.

I feel we are choosing already, many of us. I'm personally choosing the same thing I chose yesterday, in what might feel like an imperfectly perfect kind of a way (that's why we chose to be human).

We can simply choose to choose Love.

L-O-V-E

The choice doesn't need to appear to be perfect. Just by existing, it IS. It's about honest, heartfelt intent, in the most human of ways.

I remember early November 1989, perhaps more in feelings than in details. It was like some kind of a Miracle, back then, inexplicable, yet Real.

How could it be?

It simply was.

I remember the years leading up to it. I remember the years that came after. No, not all the details. I remember the feelings.

On November 10, they started tearing the wall down. I DO remember at least some of those details. I was 25 years old. And I had recently fallen myself - that Fall, I had fallen in love. I remember studying the images, astonished. They didn't arrive quite as rapidly in those days, but still, we all watched. I remember the front page of the newspaper. I remember the evening news. And we did already have cable.

We tended to believe back then that the wall would never actually fall (except through the madness of mutual destruction). I remember a friend telling me what it was like to have visited there, how forbidding it actually was - traveling there wasn't needed to feel it - we felt it in plenty of ways. Falling like that, truthfully, it wasn't even "a concept", for a very long time, not for most of us. As long as many of us could remember, that wall simply >was<. Yet fall it did. And it all came about in a way nobody expected.

It's time to begin.

It's time to continue.

We get to choose.

November 9.


Photo from July 1, 1988, permitted use with this attribution from Wikimedia Commons: By Neptuul (Own work) [CC BY-SA 3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by-sa/3.0)]

Wednesday, August 10, 2016

Beyond the Counting....

"Two separate kinds of NaNs are provided, termed quiet NaNs and signaling NaNs..." ~ Wikipedia

I know it's going to be an unusual morning when Facebook does this as I awaken....



It's rather blurry due to an imperfect way of taking a picture of my phone, but if you look very closely it says "Seen NaN/NaN/aN", and not the first I saw today.  Computer scientists see "NaN" occasionally during coding.  It means "Not a Number", and why it consistently dropped an 'N' on the one at the end, I really couldn't say - that's particularly strange.
 
It seemed to be attempting to express a date, though that's unusual too (those of you familiar with Facebook know it would normally say something like "Seen 8:42" in that context). 

Perhaps today is a day for Infinite possibilities!  Who can count the ways?

Tuesday, August 9, 2016

Integration

"...and there was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own...."
~ Mary Oliver, "The Journey" 

There comes a time in a life when you need not pick up the pieces.  It is then that you realize they were always a part of the whole.  And everything is new again.


Saturday, March 19, 2016

Carried...

"I went to the woods because I wished to live deliberately, to front only the essential facts of life, and see if I could not learn what it had to teach, and not, when I came to die, discover that I had not lived." 
~ Henry David Thoreau

I observed the current a long while, the water high, enough to encroach upon the branches of bushes, some attempting to float and others submerged.

And then I noticed a stick that looked to be stuck - yet also adrift, apparently.  It wasn't like the rest.  It wasn't attached to a bush or a tree.  It had become entangled within the branches that were.  And then all of a sudden, it broke free, the current carrying it forward.  It traveled a few feet.  Before it became stuck, again, this time a bit more.


I left it there, eventually, watching long enough to see the current turning it one way, then the other, working its way, as if aware this particular stick had the freedom to roam. 

It wasn't actually adrift.  And it was never actually stuck.  Carried, it was free.