thank you, thank you

 

There’s a poem describing how the translations of, cuneiform, I think, or maybe some kind of sacred-esque tablet, had been determined to be a list of trades, a transaction log…but this poem proposes what if it these records were indeed poetry, in fact, what if they are a love poem::, my love is like nine thousand camels, thirty barrels of oats, six hundred caskets of wine. -misremembered and not sure who wrote it originally (try searching a poem by typing “my love is like 9,000 camels”)

 

Anyways, in that vein, of tracked gratitude being one of the many faces of love, a true, lived poem, here is a list of generosities towards HoneyLa Clubhows

 

A windfall of money from TaylorAnne, for rent, deposit, and electricity

29 people at the first work party, pulling up carpets and staples and floor boards

A cardboard box filled with mica

A basket chair

Pillows

Yoga mats

A neighbor’s piano, and

Several healthy bodies moving the piano

A freshly-built back porch and a wheelchair ramp

A huge tub of Jared’s grandfather’s profesh artist markers

The Earth Day gold finch backpack puppet

An electric organ, and a guitar

Nathan building us a backdrop/screen

Donations for our silent auction fundraiser, including

10 pitcher+pot sets from Pete McWhirter

One hat knitted by Linda Giles

Two sets of earrings from Alena Applerose

Two sets of earrings from Nancy Roth

Two handblown glasses from Jonathan Biller

5 packets of seeds from Jim Veteto

A basket of goat soaps from Christina Gordon

Herbal body care products from Michaela Shaw’s Bee the Change

A ukelele lesson from Hadasa Michaels

A massage from Becca Demers

Three hours of handyman services from Marc Cavatorta

A painting from Jerry Newton that started a bidding war between TaylorAnne and Ethan, which Ethan ended up winning and donating to HoneyLa

A necklace by Ethan Peverall

A mixed-media painting-collage by Kimberly McDonald

A photograph by Lauren Lightbody

Collages by Nicholas Rippey

A painting by Kat Turczyn

Four bags of mushroom-innoculated straw from Matt Mezzuckelli

Housewarming gifts from Robert Woot Horne

Lots of wine, cheese, cherries, crackers, tomatoes, etc. for the opening event

So much food every day

Kimberly’s voice

Nicholas Rippey leading yoga every Wednesday evening

Rachel Swinney donating a massage to a HoneyLa member every month, and it going to

Daniel Nickerson, the clear star member of the month, working on the space and playing accordion in equal measure

A midnight floor-polyurethaning work party, sandwiched between

An early evening and a morning polyurethaning work party

A box of handmade paper

Several rolls of brown paper

About 7 jugs of Elmer’s Glue

A puppetry performance needing a place to rehearse

A group of sign painters for an upcoming festival needing a place to paint

Children needing a place to run around

Countless hours of hands smoothing gluey paper to the floor

Jay bread

Butter

Honey (these last three in what seem to be infinite volumes)

Bags of potting soil

Pots

Flowers, vines, edible, ornamental, already wrapping themselves around the porch

A mama and a toddler potting all the starts on the porch

Two couches

Two armchairs

One rocking chair

Butterfly wings

A set of shelves handmade by a local man 35 years ago

A set of shelves from Walmart

A set of shelves that Marc and Daniel are working on

Signs

House paint and wood stain from the Rolettes

Light bulbs

A gold standing lamp

A scanner-printer

12 cartridges of ink

An amp, a CD player, speakers

Joy–palpably

Projects–seducingly

Dancing–irresistibly

Carpet hauled to the dump

Marc’s labor replacing floor boards

Days of wall painting, teal and blush and rose

Sun collage on the floor by Nicholas

About 20 pieces for the sun collage made at the opening event

Offers for events, placed like pollen from a bee’s back at the center of a new flower

Donnie Rex Bishop’s video work

A human-sized dream catcher by Greg Hofmann

A donation of August’s rent by our faerie godmother

Natalie Kinsey’s profesh services preparing to prepare for our events

Lila Seymour’s glow

Frankie Blue’s poster

Hadasa’s handmade, scroll invitations to the opening event

Shelby’s butterfly mobile

An espresso machine

An oven

A little stove

A bamboo spoon

Many, many glass jars

Soap

Paper towels

Toilet paper

Trash cans

Late-night margarita deliveries in legit salted-rim margarita glasses

Herbs

Candles

Paint brushes

Tears

Laughter

Blood

Drool

Bare skin

Blushing

 

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birthday lovin

The performance was over, and I was kind of sad…melancholy. The show was a hit…it was fun, connecting, beautiful, wholehearted. I played the moon, or rather, I was all in black, as space, holding the moon puppet. It felt so natural. And yet, I think the sadness was coming from a feeling of not being recognized, or appreciated in a way that felt visceral. Everyone’s loving comments afterwards felt like they maybe weren’t really seeing me. Which is something I have struggled with…feeling really seen.

 

I felt the energy of the art gallery where the performance was kind of wrapping up, and I felt myself drawn to the after party at Snaggy Mountain. My beloved Natalie, play facilitator queen extraordinaire, said she wanted to come and facilitate and make it a Hannah-tinged party, to celebrate my upcoming birthday. I wasn’t sure at all what that meant, but hey, I was craving some kind of deeper, fuller attention, so I was into it. I drove over to the party alone, still a bit melancholy. We got redirected from the common house to the barn. As I walked up to the barn, my little plastic grocery bag of chips, popcorn, and chocolate swinging from my arm, I prayed…I tilted my face to the cloudy night sky, and prayed to my star family, “Please come play with me tonight. I want to have fun with you. I just want to play and have fun with you.”

 

{It may help to divulge a bit about the “star family” term. I adore the belief that there are spirits all around the universe who love us, pay attention to us, and want the best for us. Sometimes, when I feel myself complaining, I turn my energetic attention to these spirits and ask for their perspective, and they quickly point out to me the lie I am telling myself that is keeping me sad. So, in this somewhat sad moment, I wanted to turn towards their truth, their light, their fun. I wanted to release this heavy expectation/wish for love and being seen, and just to play, like friends.}

 

Hoo boy. I had no idea what I was getting into. I stepped into the barn, set my food on the counter, people are dancing. My dear friend Adam, who is quite the sensual dancer, started moving close to me and we danced together…I grabbed a broom as a pole for us to play with and around. Then, Natalie came in. “Are we ready?” she asked me. I knew that if she was going to facilitate something, now would have to be the time, or else the regular old party-party would gain momentum and an organized thing would be hard to start. I told her now’s the chance.

 

She had everyone circle up. “What an incredible thing we all just experienced!” she began, referencing the performance we were all just at/a part of. She quickly transitioned to saying that she wanted to help celebrate me, Hannah, a budding creative Matriarch. She invited everyone to break into pairs and write poems about what they love about me, and then they would all deliver it to me, slam style.

 

I was blushing from the moment she called me a Matriarch. What, me? This little faerie of a person, just turning 27…a matriarch?! As the circle folded in on itself, people pairing up, I scooted outside to sit on a wooden chair in the light rain drizzle, to be with the stars, and blush.

My two teenage friends were outside, as well. Frankie and Lila. I sat with my arms stretched out, feeling the light kisses of dripping clouds, and then our friend Becca appeared. She handed me a bouquet of flowers, with deep red roses in there, and went inside. I sat there, smelling the flowers, glowing.

 

They were ready for me inside. I came into the room, sat on a table next to my friend Nathan, a rock of comfort, and leaned into him. Natalie was telling people if they didn’t have anything to say, they could rub me. Gently, three men, including Nathan, started rubbing my back, neck and arms while I sat on the edge of the table, my legs dangling. I leaned back into their rubs, and felt like a throne of massaging hands was holding me up.

 

Natalie announced that a new friend of mine, Leah, had written a poem about me the day that she met me. I had loved her spark and gave her a copy of my zine, as a gift and a welcome to this valley. I felt like she would appreciate it. Apparently, she really did. Here is the poem that she wrote the night we met, that kicked off the Hannah appreciation poetry circle:

 

Hannah

by Leah Weigel

 

Hannah crosses her legs and a

world folds up inside her.

She tilts her head and

the planets jolt out of orbit.

 

Hannah whispers me poems and

her great breath stirs

tsunami.

She sketches me the moon and

her pencil carves canyons.

 

Hannah dances like a wave and

I wash up on her shore

She giggles and I redefine what

music is.

 

Hannah talks about a kitten and

I swear she is singing.

She shows me her garden and

 

I fall in love with the milky way

and

I fall in love with this earth and

I fall in love with people and

I fall in love with her garden

and her kitten and

her drawing of the new moon

and her poetry and

her wild hair and

her crossed legs on the wooden

floor. And

 

I fall in love with Hannah.

Thank you, Hannah.

 

THAT is where the poetry circle STARTED. Are you starting to feel it? Are you feeling the teary, swoony, melty, what the fuck is even happening how much love is even possible this must be breaking some kind of record, the earth must have cracked open and oozed out the energetic heart of the planet and here we are, all inside of it, calling it my name?

 

It just kept going at that pace. Friends who I barely know, my friends’ parents, read me simple, elegant, profound reflections of myself. Old, dear friends told me truths about how they have had The Most Fun with me. One friend said I rock his dreams. Another called me a pillar of the community. I oscillated between eyes-closed-basking, tearing up, smiling, hiding my face, smiling, and eyes-closed basking again. I felt everyone’s easy comfort of raining this love upon me. I mean, it’s pretty rare to see a group of 20 or so people all put their attention onto one thing, let alone a person, let alone having that attention be pure love, let alone having that person be ME. What was happening? I was coming undone, and re-done.

 

At one moment, or many moments, it occurred to me that my singleness, my not-being-partnered (although I long for it, wish for it) is part of what made this possible. I think people felt my painfully-strong desire to be loved, and rather than leaving it all up to one person to love me, they were all loving me.

 

Next, I got carried over to a bed to be massaged while people split up into groups to make my fantasies come true.

 

I was laid on my tummy. Hands on my feet, on my hands, my arms. I almost cried at my arms being touched…my poison ivy wounds are just finally retreating after weeks, and it has been so long since I was touched deeply on my arms. People rubbed my butt, and Kimberly, my sweet, wide-open friend mentioned taint massage. She started exploring, spreading my thighs, rubbing right up in there through my leggings. For someone who felt pretty alone and pretty sure her longings for touch would not be satisfied as I drove to the party…I was sure having so many pockets of longing fulfilled.

 

Then, I started to hear Tayloranne singing to me. Her sweet voice. My best friend. Who often has so much on her plate, and we do so much coordinating, business scheming, grandiose planning together, that I sometimes forget or wonder about her love for me. Lately, I keep feeling guilty about owing her money and feeling sad about an imbalance between what we’re able to contribute. Not feeling good enough. But, I heard her singing my name. I felt her special touch. And then, she started to kiss me. She kissed my neck. She kissed me all over my back. It felt so good. People were still rubbing me and pulling my hair, and now soft, soft kisses from a woman I love so thoroughly. Deep, deep pockets of longing filling up, overflowing.

 

The groups who had been plotting my fantasy fulfillment, as if there could be more, were ready for me. I got picked up by several strong men, so I was laying on my back, crowd-surfing-style, and they carried me around while everyone sang a song I wrote…”In my heart there’s a fire burning brightly, there’s a fire burning brightly.”

 

I couldn’t even sing along. I listened to their voices play with the lilting notes, I felt the fire catching in all of their hearts, we all light each other up you know, like candles kissing, like a wild fire. I was riding in the wind of a wild fire of hearts in heaven.

 

They laid me on the floor. It was time for the next fantasy. They told me I could be as clothed as I wanted, and they would all dangle, touch, tickle me with fabric. I couldn’t resist…I took off my clothes. As I went for it, pulling my dress over my head, I felt a little shy, and asked for some encouragement. People cheered. I got naked, laid back down. I heard someone say “She’s so brave.” But really, I just felt so comfortable. So heaven. So bliss. How could I pass up the full bloom moment of naked receiving fabric touch from my friends? I was pretty beyond comprehension at this point…pure basking. They started to lay the fabric on me, wrapping it around me, tying it, till just my mouth was showing. I felt flower petals being placed around my lips. Then, they took turns kissing my lips. Lips and lips and beard tickles and lips.

 

Then, a pause, it was time to get up. Trap music time. A friend was holding a dress, and they helped me into it. I was upright and the dance party was beginning. Bodies hopping moshing pumping rubbing twirling. I started to feel overwhelmed. Spinning. Holy fuck. Did all of that just happen? I stepped out of the dancing…I needed the stars. I went and laid on the wet earth and felt calm. I had just received so very much much love. And somehow, within me, there was still a prayer, a prayer for some singular, focused love. Someone specifically choosing me.

 

At the moment this prayer crossed my threshold, I felt hands on my feet. Shane. He was right along my energy meridians, soothing, smoothing. Ahhhh. Dreams keep coming true. Shane came around to my shoulders, was rubbing my neck, he was really tuned in to my energy. It felt so good. I melted back into him. He started to lightly kiss my neck. It felt so good. People were somewhere else, starting a fire. I was gazing at Shane, smiling, laughing, being kissed. People over at the fire started chanting my name. Shane kissed my lips. I asked him to escort me over to the fire. He did. I sat down, melting again.

 

At the fire, Tayloranne took the stage. She had everyone reach in and feel the fire’s magic, and howl. So much howling. Then, she crouched next to me, and beamed the most love at me that maybe I’ve ever felt. She told me, with huge eyes gazing into mine, how worthy I am of all of this, how deeply everyone means everything they were saying, how truly loved and cherished I am. How much I deserve this. I melted. I dissolved. Tears flowing, ugly crying, oh god, she does mean this, everyone does mean this, I really am so loved. I really am so worthy.

 

Shane stayed next to me. Rubbing me, holding me, kissing me gently. Me kissing him back. It felt exquisite. I felt his eagerness, which I felt a bit shy about reciprocating at the fire, with so many friends around. I wanted to talk to him more. To see if we really were on the same page. There were several moments at the fire that felt so sweetly coupled with him…when someone else would talk to us, and we would turn our attention to them, but he would keep touching me, he would keep an arm around me. I thought, “oh, is this what it feels like to have a partner? I like this a lot. I could settle into this.”

 

Shane started telling me about his travels. He just returned to the area after being gone for 8 months. He mentioned visiting a lady love, and I realized, I really didn’t know where he was coming from or what he wanted. I told him I wanted to go back in the barn to talk to him.

 

In the barn, we found a quiet corner, and I told him that so much for me recently has taught me I want a forreal partner. As tempting as it is, each time a sexy, loving man friend wants me, and I want to give in and say, “well, what the heck, we can just be intimate while I wait to meet the partner who just wants to be with me”…I’ve done that enough times recently to realize that that keeps my plate full of not really having my desires fulfilled. Casually sleeping with people means my heart isn’t available to those quiet, or maybe very loud, conversations that are the beginnings of great love. And I deeply want great love. And I already have it in spades from my friends. I’m ready for partnership. I told Shane what I am wanting, kind of already knowing his answer before he said that he’s not ready for, or looking for, that. We kissed a couple more times, and that was that. I was sleepy. Shane walked me to my car, and as I drove home, alone, I was not at all lonely. I am sure that great love, equal to the wave of adoration, pleasure, and cherishing I received from these amazing friends, is coming for me.

 

relaxing into it

Today I got word I needed to find a new place to live by tomorrow. I had known it was coming but didn’t know how quickly I’d need to move.

I kept steering, hard, into the magic. Instead of making a desperate housing ad, I wrote a celebration of ten things I was loving in that moment. Instead of going to see a commune (when I thot of it I felt soo tired), I went and played by the river with Ruby and got clearer and clearer. I took a long luscious shower and decided to go use Internet at a local community center to apply for a job I’ve been excited about.

At the center, a woman walked in who I’ve met before. I visited her home yesterday to consider a wwoof position, (which as of last night, they thot wasn’t a good fit, which really surprised me because I felt so home there). In the course of our talking, she decided, smiling, to invite me into her home.

As my new host continued talking, I looked down and there was a little honey-colored ant with wings, doing a funny dance on my knee. Like it was cleaning itself. It was really into it. Then, something shot off. Another and another, the ant’s wings landed on my knee. Then it walked off, it’s message complete.

This season has been all about flying, traveling, wings and willingness. But now, the wings have been shed. I’m so excited to see what this next season of my unique life will hold. I’m guessing dirt, and roots, and this luscious land.13346809_10208527719488903_1829928393739923637_n

Turning into fascination

It’s been recently brought to my attention that not everybody is familiar with fascination. Like, familiar in the way that they know what to do with it. How to dance with it.

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Do you know how to dance with fascination? Do I? I think I do. I think this gesture right here, of letting the words that are on repeat in my head out in a stream, making room for new and newer words, is a key gesture that I use to dance with my enchantment. I do indeed get hung-up with the words I hear on repeat until I let them out, starting the flow.

 

The gesture of how to engage with fascination is often a simple one. Perhaps, it could be considered mindless, in the way that it doesn’t require much thot. It makes more room for the fascination to take over. Like, tracing a gorgeous shadow on the paper. Getting to revel in the edge, and the places where it blurs and you kind of have to make it up. But, it’s not mindless in the sense of dumb or trivial or disengaged. No. It’s a heightened engagement. It’s flow. The part of the brain turns off that is thinking about later and hunger and pee and that conversation where I maybe didn’t say the most polite thing. That all shuts off, or at least, goes very dim. That kind of mindless. Which makes room for the higher mind. The mind that feels connected to the shadow’s edge, to the stream of inspiration, to the grace, the deepening urges. It’s when we become a channel. Whoosh!

I’ve been lucky enough, and made my own luck enough, to have a deep relationship with fascination. I’ve made a whole lot of room in my life to follow those urges, and I’m working, daily, on making even more room. Because letting that channel flow, opening that creative portal, so to speak, allows for inspiration about all other areas of my life to flow in. And I mean creative portal in a broad sense. Not like, fascination must equal art, or that art must equal paper and paint and a smock. Not at all. Creative in the sense that when we turn towards our fascination, when we reach out our hands and our eyes and become willing to it, all the energy we bring towards situations as Creators comes to play, too. I start to see how I’m creating the situation anew with my interest, my willingness, my succumbing to the lure.

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Creating the situation, like, being so curious about the way my body swings and bounces as I run that I find a way to run with my body’s jiggles that makes it feel even easier, lighter, more fun. Turning toward the sensation in my legs as I bike, with my breath, where I let the burning flow and churn and pulse and inspire. Enchanted by the way the rain drips down the window, catching other drips and making streams, and I follow it with my eyes and become the streams. Fascination, like we have all seen in small children, like my sweet one-year old putting the cherry tomato in a bottle cap, pouring it out, putting it back in, again and again and again.

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In talking about my own fascinations, and those of wee children, it’s utterly important to say that we don’t have to be fascinated by the thing someone else is fascinated by. I’m often not engaged in my baby’s obsession with beads or the little knob on the floor. And likewise, I don’t have to find crochet appealing just because my friend does. What captures our unique fancies and the ways we feel inspired to engage with it are so exquisitely all about US, the flavor that only we can bring to the world. The reason we’re fucking here.

For me, that meant sewing pieces of trash together for a long-ass time. I was so into it. And giving myself wholeheartedly to that phase has led me to where I am now, which I’m so deep in, I don’t think it’s even ready for words, except for these words right here, my love note to you, to the you that is deeply engaged in your own fascination.

 

{Coming soon: Key Gestures in the Dance of Fascination // An Info-Doodle}

A prompt: What is something you’ve found interesting, engaging, appealing, or fascinating today? What is one way that you could engage with it?

 

Hay Play Jay!

I live in a house where each day, someone is in charge of tending the house’s joy, and they document the day in this book:

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We call this person the Play Jay, and we each sign up to be Play Jay about once a week. It’s the coolest system for group living I’ve ever heard of, let alone directly lived.

Here’s a short list of what the Play Jay is actually supposed to do:

  • Greet visitors, and help them find a way to plug in to the flow of the house
  • Initiate 10-minute cleaning parties by blasting music and wooing everyone to join (of course other peeps can initiate these too, as needed)
  • Make sure a group meal happens (not necessarily being the only chef or the chef at all, but checking in with people and coordinating)
  • Harmonize the kiddos, maybe take them on an adventure or have some kinda activity for them, or see who might be up for something like that

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That’s pretty much the extent of the shared roles of the Play Jay. And from there, each person gets to make it their own. The Play Jay question is: how do I want to tend the house’s joy? It’s an invitation to go pretty deep, because it’s a full day, just one day a week. Go hard. Make it count. Have a really good time.

Some Play Jays wake up early for Joy o’Clock. They tend the fire, and set out some conscious play prompts, inviting people to make gratitude lists and dream things forward. Some make breakfast. Some make dinner.

Some Play Jays clean the fridge. Some reorganize the basement. Some invite people out for walks. Some put up prompts on a big piece of paper on the wall. Some take the boys out to McDonald’s playland or the beach. Most start epic dance parties.

The day before Christmas Eve’s Play Jay went shopping for gifts and Christmas foods, and orchestrated a super fun wrapping party in the downstairs art space, while the boys played in their cardboard ship and eventually started unwrapping and taking the candy out of everything.

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We’re refining the system. We just invented an even shorter cleaning party called Blitz, where you go hard for a one-minute group tidy. Someone just yells “BLITZ” and it’s on. One person who works five days a week decided she’d rather share her Play Jay day with someone else, so she could have more time for herself. Things like that are making it feel easier and more fun.

I’m so glad to be living in a community where we prioritize joy. Where the main system (the only system?) is about supporting joy, knowing that cleaning and kiddo care and adventuring and relationships and money and everything else falls into place when dance music is on and we all get to feel like we’re showing up fully in a continuous way.

 

Returned to earth

Today my mama’s body rejoined the earth body. She was being held aloft, isolated somewhat, contained…her ashes resting in a plastic bag sealed with a golden dog-tag label inside a black plastic box, inside my dad’s garage.

Her death was sudden. A year and a half ago, she made the decision to end her life. She struggled with depression since I was about eight years old. Her depression stemmed from trauma earlier in her own life that she uncovered by going to couple’s therapy with my dad. She was hospitalized many times as her desire to die wrestled with wanting to be present for her children, wanting to be better for us.

When she finally made the decision that took her spirit out of her form, we were all grown. I was four months pregnant. A new vessel for spirit being formed. My younger brother, Max, about to graduate from college. My two older brothers, Nick and Josh, being successful in their own powerful, beautiful, business and party animal ways. Today, a couple of us reflected as we sprinkled her ashes onto a cloth, before submerging the cloth in the ocean, that she seemed to hold on much longer, until we were all strong enough to be on our own. What a beautiful way to re-frame it.

I’d honestly been thinking that maybe she had to die because she couldn’t bear to witness the way I was being pregnant: a traveling gypsy without much of a plan besides Community. I was doing a fundraising campaign online to buy a car to get to this vague Community. I thought maybe she couldn’t handle my version of parenthood…she wanted me to have something more akin to her own story, a husband who could buy us a house in the suburbs. To afford nannies and china cabinets and custom-upholstered armchairs. $ecurity. And I was swimming in magick, knowing that’s where my power comes from, and I was just starting to flirt with the idea of money being an alright thing to allow in, an acceptable form of energy to play with. I didn’t think she got it.

But yeah, maybe it was more that she actually saw how ready I was. How capable I was of doing it without her.

As soon as she passed, I got the phone call. It happened pretty soon after the car purchase and venturing out on a play tour of the country with 10 wild and beautiful friends. We were actually at our first landing spot, a gorgeous mountain-top community formed by a man we met in a Walmart parking lot. He took a liking to our done-up robin’s egg blue RV. After I heard my dad say on the phone “Mom’s dead”, I don’t quite remember how we got off the phone, but the sobbing overtook me. The tribe walked me to a rock where I’d meditated the day before, an already-friendly place, and left me in a nest of blankets to wail.

The wailing subsided, and the question poured through me, “WHY! Mama, why? I’m pregnant!!!” And I heard an answer. A clear answer. She said “Honey, this way I don’t have to pass along my stories of how hard motherhood is, how hard birth is, and I can be pure love. I can always be with you and supporting you now.”

I had somewhat warped this answer in my memory over the past year and a half to say that she couldn’t approve of the way I was mothering while she was alive. In fact, I originally wrote something closer to that, but then I remembered that’s not what she really said…what she really said was that bit about not wanting to pass along her stories. So, it’s more like, she knew I was capable, she just didn’t know how to support me without telling me her own stories that were perhaps clouded by her depression. Oh mama, you free bird, you wild fierce lover, you excellent biter of tongues, not passing along your clouds. I want to hold your portrait to me, to keep the small vial of ashes I have left. I want to feel your chest against my face, your warm, broad, often rosy, freckled chest. Mmmm. I do feel it in my memory.

And yet, today is the day we returned you to earth body. I hadn’t even thought it was that important. I mostly organized the ceremony because Max was so bothered by the idea of you being “captive” in Dad’s garage. Anyway, as we all put our hands into the pile of your ashes on the cloth, on top of the herbs from yesterday’s Thanksgiving table, on top of the wedge of pomegranate I bit out, on top of your grandmother’s lace-edged cloth, on top of the sand, I felt your energy sinking into the earth. Since our conversation on the mountaintop, I felt that you had rejoined all-encompassing Spirit. It hadn’t occurred to me that there is that balance of body to earth, as well. But, there you went. I felt it through my hand, and then I felt the amazing instantaneous disappearance as I released a handful of your vessel into the wind. And then, carrying your ashes, lighter than baby Ruby, towards the ocean with Max. Helping him shake out the cloths into the water, as he shook with tears and the cold. Scrubbing the ashes out, like I’ve scrubbed so many cloths before, one side rubbing against the other. The clouds of you floating on the surface of the water, until the movement brought your vessel under, within. As we walked back towards the crevice in the cliff where we started the ceremony, I felt you underfoot in each step. I feel you now in the Earth Body, the way I’ve felt you for a year and a half in the Spirit Realm.

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Unraveling the cocoon

I feel myself on the edge of something huge. A frontier. I feel the spaciousness, the room to expand. I feel myself still nestled in my blanket-cocoon, not quite ready to step all the way out. Simply looking, and feeling full, to the point of overwhelm, by the looking. The same as when I was pregnant, and I could eat a meal first by looking at it, feeling sated for many good minutes before the urge to dive within overtook me.

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I love my pace. I love my cocoon and how it has taught me innumerable things, as the rain drops on the window blend into rivery tendrils. I am savoring these last moments in the blankets, before stepping into the full glory and power of skin against air and sun and rain, legs bared and stretched and standing, supporting, dancing…arms reaching, lifting, twirling…hands grabbing, fingering, kneading…

Oh I love savoring the last bits of what is. The foamy, densely sweet puddle at the bottom of the mug. The lover laying on my chest as we breathe together. Packing up. Licking the plate. Eyes shining so alive and appreciative in the goodbye. Recognizing Ruby won’t be nursing forevermore, and scooping her up, squeezing her tight, savoring the smell of her sweaty head and the way she pinches and twists the nipple she’s not latched onto.

Ruby has walked a couple of times on her own now. We’ve slept apart a couple of times, too. We both have these teeth coming in. We are both starting to climb. I’m so bottomlessly fascinated by the ways we mirror each other’s learning and growth.

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To know a season is shifting, so much more than a tidal swoosh. To see it ahead of time, the leaves aching into yellow, the urge to leave, certain clothes no longer appealing, ideas blooming so vast the vague outline leaves me trembling in awe. A new spirit guide emerges.

And then, the miraculous shift occurs. All of a sudden, without any announcement, she is walking, not holding onto anything but her joy tantalizing her forward. I don’t know what my miraculous shift will look like. There are these clues, these dreams, these desires and callings and glimmerings and wishings. Wings unfurling. My joy dangling like a carrot.

I am leaving my spring and summer home at the end of this month. Plane tickets have been bought. The other side of the country’s teeth gleam golden. A horseshoe toss into a beckoning smile.