Pythian Games

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Seeding My Own Dreams

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I took this little seed.  Well, maybe ‘little’ is a misnomer, compared to other seeds.  Comparatively, I am sure this would be considered a large seed.  In my hand, however, it seems so small, much smaller than I am.

I held the seed in my hand and whispered my secrets against its skin.  I told it my dreams, my wishes.  I spoke of my failures, my set-backs.  I told him of my pride and joy, my family.  I whispered tales of forest trails and river treks, of hopeful future plans.

I went out; I bought a special pot for my very special seed.  I painted little designs along the sides of the planter.  I filled it up with premium dirt, taken from my compost bin, ripe with rabbit leavings and trash decomposed into the most fertile earth I could find.  With care, with murmured prayers, I slid the seed in, wrapped it up tight beneath a blanket of dirt.  I added a bit of water, enough to get things incubating.  I left it to its birth.

I didn’t really think all that much about it for a week or two after that.  Of course, I made sure to add water to the mix, once a week, when I watered every other plant in the house, but I didn’t really pay it all that much attention.

Now and then I would catch myself, staring in its direction, my mind racing a million miles away, speeding off on horseback, while in reality I was stuck in my dray city life.  About the tenth or twentieth time I caught myself drifting away, enjoying life in my mind more than in my own body, I started to talk to the seed again.

Once or twice a day, I would sit down, my lips close to the side of the pot, and I would speak from my heart.  Often I would sit there for fifteen or twenty minutes, wishing away, hoping with all my heart, dreaming and praying, knowing there was nothing the little seed could do.  Yet, it made me feel better to speak, to get all my feelings out.

I never thought of what that seed might be enduring, listening to all my endless talk, my vapid chatter.

The seed sprouted overnight, while I was asleep, while I was far from watching.  When I awoke in the morning, it was not a tentative little stalk peeking out of the soil that I saw.  She was a proud tall finger of a plant, reaching up high into the sunlight.  She had six inches of stem and you could see she was still growing.  Her color twisted from an almost white green into a darker yellowy green as she reached up taller.  Indeed, I had to sit and visit with her, to congratulate her, to shower her with love and attention.  This time I spoke of her future, of my dreams for her, of where one day I hoped to plant her, so she could sink her roots into Mother Earth and shoot up into the sky, straight and angular and happy, producing fruits to feed our family, as well as many animal families that there may wander.

Hours later, the first leaf showed, tiny but strong; it slowly unfurled.  By evening, there were three leaves, one larger than the others.  I could see buds forming where new leaves would soon sprout forth.

It was later that night, after I had bid her good night, after I had slid under my own comfortable blankets, as I slipped off out of sight, that I first heard her voice, humming against my ear drums, telling me of her dreams for me, her visions for me.  I smiled, feeling safe, listening to the sage advice of the one who offered my guidance.

I had planted my own prayer tree.  Now it was answering my prayers.  How lucky can this woman be?

Prompt from the SoulFood Alphabet, brought to you by the letter B

Find me at:

http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

September 30, 2010 at 5:44 pm

Alyce’s Journey Out of the Grove

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DSCF4460started at:

http://www.dailywriting.net/SpottedDogSundae.htm

ended up at:

http://www.dailywriting.net/MadPartyRoom.htm

I am not following any old squirrel.  I don’t care what it does.  I am tired of chasing after animals that talk and walk and carry watches and all sorts of other nonsense.  Oh, I am not saying, oh Alyce dear, keep your feet on the ground, dear.  NO!  Oh no!  I mean to run and fly and dream and swim and do all sorts of things.  I am merely stating the bold, probably brainless fact that say unabashedly—I am not following someone else around on his dreams and journeys any longer.  I am not ignoring my own dreams any longer.  I am not subjugating my self or my desires any more.  I have had more than enough of that.  I am thirty-seven years old.  Yes, thirty-seven.  It is about bloody time I picked my own self up and asked her, what is it that you desire, Alyce dear?  So that is what I am going to do.  Pooh on that silly old squirrel!  we can spike that thing on a stick and set it over the fire to roast and cook!

First things first, I may have been the one to plant this grove, but I did not plant it to contain me.  I built it to give honor to the Goddess.  I designed it to give succor to my bleeding heart in time of need.  To honor the child that moved on without me.  To give myself a place to go, a sanctuary, where I could do nothing at all but sob or dance or scream or sing or any combination thereof, unaffecting and undisturbed by any other outside influence.  This grove indeed is a thing of wild beauty, grown strong, though a might twisted, watered as it has been by the tears of my fears and pains and angers and torments and pleasures and joys. Yet, it has grown, under the light of the moon, and the light of the sun.  This is a place of peace.  I have succeeded there.  Yes.

Though, now, we come to this second thing.  It is a circle, this grove.  There is no beginning and no end.  I created it this way.  Quite specifically.  It is made so that I may fly in or out as I chose.  Yet, here I stand, without my wings.  Somewhere along the line of living other people’s dreams, my wings were clipped and they’ve never grown back in and I just hadn’t taken the time to actually notice until now that maybe that isn’t such a good thing.  The trunks of my blessed trees have grown thick, crowding close to one another.  I am no longer the thin wiry beanpole I was as a child either.  I have curves and lumps and hairs growing where they ought not to be.  I have not kept up with my calling, with my Yoga, so my flexibility may be better than most, but it is nowhere near where it should be.  I think I can wend my way in between this branch and that, climb over here, slink under that.  I think I can make my way into the wood behind and beyond the grove.  Surely, it awaits my travails.

So, yes, it would have been easier to follow that simpering squirrel.  It is always so much easier to follow someone else as he goes about obtaining his desires, rather than fighting and standing strong to attain your own.  I am nothing if not determined.  The fire and flame of a hundred hundred red-heads flows through these veins, even if I show up as a blonde without the latest dye with which I’ve tried to pollute the coloration of my lovely locks.  I do not take no for an answer and I can be both bitter and brutal once I set my mind to things.  I am hard to dissuade.

Sigh.  Why are these things always so hard?  Why can’t I be the princess locked in the tower?  I could grow my hair long enough to use it as a rope to climb down all by myself.  No.  I plant a freaking jungle that I have to crawl through on my belly, with sweat clotting in my eyes and stinging its way down my sides.  Yes, that’s me.  Never the one to take the easy road.  Give me the long dark and scary ride, every time.

Ok.  Now, I am out of my grove.  And, uhm, it’s dark out here.  So, three, where did all that sunlight go?  Hey, where’s my Mother Moon?  Round and glowing in her silver fullness?  I will gladly take the shadows, if only I may catch a glimpse of the returning light to guide me and let me know I am on the right track.  I can’t even see the stars for all the veg clouding and covering things.  It is rather disenchanting.  I can smell the ripe scent of loam and things that grow.  It is not always a pretty smell.  No little twinkle for Alyce here, hey?  Not even the smallest of glows?

Oh, look.  Lightning bugs.  All over the place.  Lying across leaves, piled two and three high in places.  I guess for them I shall look away, out of decency’s sake there.  Nevertheless, they are lights, tiny little butt-shaking lights, but there you go.  Ask and ye shall receive, right?  I shall not look a gift horse in the mouth.  I feel safer now, with this tiny bit of something, strange as that may sound.

Now, to clomp and tromp my way through these woods, right?  Do I make a great deal of noise?  Hoping to frighten predators and prey alike?  Or do I go quiet and meek through the underbrush, praying nothing catches even a mere hint of me?  No.  I am not longer the meek and small.  Humble, I may be.  But tiny and voiceless?  Screw that.  That party left the building eons ago.  Boom, boom, boom, here I come.  Fe fi fo fum, I’m coming to drink you dry, Englishman.  You had better have something more than ale, although water alone would be so fine right now.

As I stalk these woods, meaner than any mountain lion, screeching out my own warrior song as I go, hoping to turn away bears and beasts galore with my raucous song, where should my mind be?  Do I contemplate each vital leaf upon each hungry branch?  Do I reach out, plum my own depths, forcing my way into my darker crevices to pry out the loose bits that have long caused me dread?  Do I dig even deeper to excavate those long forgotten and now forlorn things I once called dreams?  Do I let go of the past, allow it to remain buried, and in many instances allow the wind to carry the ashy remnants far from me in every direction?  Or do I stop and cry to the wind to teach me?  To bring me new things, things I have not thought of, things I had not dreamed possible?  Am I stopping my own progress by wanting the things I want to want…or am I driving myself onward to attain these blessed goals?  Do I avoid the forest for the trees…or are the trees avoiding me in their own lost pursuits?  What does it take to be able to really see around here?  Where do I go to obtain some semblance of clarity?

I decide, as I push and shove and snarl my way through vine and leaf, that I shall think of not even one thing, and see what my monkey mind throws at me.  If the monkey mind throws enough…stuff…my way, surely some of it will stick, right?  If I can get past the smell, to see the diamond buried in the stink, so to speak, then, certainly, I shall have a winner on my hands, won’t I?

Here we are, now.  Where are we?  Four?  Five?  I’ve lost count, what with all this singing and the monkey slinging.  What is it here, the cream rising to the top….

I never really want the Barbie lifestyle.  The husband, the kids, the dog, the white picket fence.  I wanted all those things, yes, except maybe for that white picket fence thing, but not in the way everyone else does.  I never expected to genuinely settle down, to have that sort of peace that having a real family brings.  I also thought the children at my hearth would be brought to me, not had by me.  The man I never expected to stay that long.  Long enough maybe to create a child before moving on.  I have always anticipated and planned to be a single mom.  I don’t think til now I actually realized that.  I meant to have my farm, to have to fight to keep things together, to grow things to survive more than to be ecologically sound, to take in all manner of strays and heal them up and get them ready to live again.

That’s not all together what I want any more.  I still want the children.  I want children of my own.  If others come to me through whatever means, then so be it and blessings come.  If we have the farm, terrific.  If we plant the garden in our backyard in the middle of the city, so long as we can have some chickens and a goat or two, I would be happy and proud.  Well, fine, even without the chickens or goats, I’d be happy and proud.  I want that husband now, the good one, the one that stays and works through things, the one who does not lie or cheat or steal or any of those other things I am so used to when it comes to men.  I want that disconnect from humanity, while still maintaining the vital vibrant edge of things, so that I may share my journey with others, to drag them along and show them the way to set down their chains and let go of all the things they allow to hold them down.  I want to show them how they can stop following every rabbit, squirrel and corn nut that comes their way with a brilliant idea that is nothing like what they honestly want out of things.

Hey, look, isn’t that the sun?  Is it dawn already?  Here I stand now, at the edge of a great cliff, looking down into the depths of a roiling river.  I can’t swim, but, you know what?  I don’t care right now.  I shall launch my frail frame into the air and dive into that swirling massive pool.  I shall learn to shift myself into the ever-regenerating salmon, the one who does not wither and die upon spawning, but the one who continues to swim back year after year after year.  I shall dive down deep, cleanse myself from the sweat and grit and grime of my overland journey, before bursting back to the surface with a renewed sense of…everything.

I look forward now, planning out, with very little detail and only bunches and bunches of hope and desire, the path I shall take from here on out…..look out, Universe, here I come.  I’m playing by my rules now.

written, drawn and painted by Tabitha Kietero

Written by Tabitha Low

August 31, 2009 at 8:47 pm

Restoring The Dig Tree

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digtree1

prompt found at the Dig Tree

I find myself standing amid the debris and destruction that was my dig tree.  I am not disenchanted or downtrodden or sad.  I find that I am feeling strong, happy, hopeful.  I search through the shards and shrapnel of exploded wood with care.  I do not know for certain what it is for which I search, but I am sure I will know it when I see it.  I stand there astounded by how far out the blast area reaches.  Even though the lightning strike had caused a huge contusion, it hadn’t occurred to me that some much could have been thrown so far.  And yet, it obviously had been.  I walk slowly, circling, from left to right, in ever-widening circles, then ever-shrinking circles, over and over again, losing all sense of time and space, going in and going out, as my brain ceases to ponder the whys and wherefores of what happened last time I stood with this tree.   I merely observe and attest to the reality of nothinglessness.

The remainder of the trunk remains attached to the roots seems to be stuck canted half in and half out of the dirt.  I see shriveled blackened roots.  So much of the wood appears to have died long ago, densely choked with noxious black goo, as well as plenty having withered away to tendrils of ash and dust.  However, there is also a lot of healthy growth showing, where there were good times, places where healing continued as best it could under the circumstances.  Even amidst this chaos of death, I can see the tiny fragments of life beading up, demanding their own fighting chance to survive.  I cannot and will not take that from any of them.

I start to think I have spent enough time here, commiserating with the left-overs of the tree.  Apparently, whatever it is I came to find is no longer here.  Or maybe it was the memory alone that I was to gather and hold tight as my own.  I walk away, back towards where I had come from, when I see it, about twelve feet away from the main core of the trunk.  A tiny seedling, gasping with hope and vitality.  My tree does not grow from seed, but from seedling, from an outgrowth from the roots that sends up new shoots at random periodic intervals.  Here I am.  Here is the spark I have been looking for, waiting for, needing to gather up with gracious arms and loving tears, to transplant to another , much safer ground.

With the utmost care and lightest of touches, I clear away the ground, digging around to ensure the safety of the root ball.  The ball of craggly earth that I prise up is nearly three times larger than the sapling itself, but I don’t care.  All I know is I must protect this baby.    I carry it in my arms until I return to my abode, not quite a home, now less than a house since my heart has left it.  I fill a deep wide pot full of the richest soil and plant my tiny tree in the pot, covering it with more fresh dirt and mulch.  I will give it three days to adjust to the changes before I water it, in order to protect the roots that much more, according to the way I was taught by an ancient gardener long ago.

I offer it prayers, send energizing love and sweetest healing powers deep into its roots and its core.  I set crystals around its edges to catch the sun and add that much more healing power and energy to the soil.  I pray over it, weaving ribbons of light around the pot, the trunk and the tiny little leaves that bravely spurn the arena of death we so recently departed.  I know that once I find my Home, I shall dig a wide deep hole and burrow the roots of this tree into the earth there, where I shall nurture and attend to this tree constantly, with all my love and ability.  Where this tree grows shall be my everlasting Home.  Now, in order to protect both this tree and my family, I must look even harder for that home that is meant for us.

drawn and written by Tabitha Kietero

http://knittingjourneymanredux.blogspot.com/
http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/
http://sapphyresinthesky.wordpress.com

Written by Tabitha Low

August 27, 2009 at 4:43 pm

Sole Print

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Written by Tabitha Low

August 23, 2009 at 12:27 am

Return To The Dig Tree

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Barn Doorprompt found at:

The Dig Tree

You would think, as whiney as I was last time I stood before this tree, with my pick in my hand, deciding I was too tired and too whatever to actually just dig in, that I would have gotten over myself and my little childish whims before I came back again.  Ah, but that simply is not so, because here I am, glaring at this crummy twisted tree, yet again, scowling and angry and more than a little irritated with everything, blaming the tree for my own vapid indecision.  Fine.  Here I am.  I shall be here now and plain old get over myself.

I did not really come prepared this time.  I have no shovel.  I have no pick.  I have my hands, with no gloves to clothe and shelter them from the rocky ground that surrounds and protects this old dig tree.  At least this time, I can say with the utmost certainty, I know why I am here; I know what I am looking for….I have achieved all my major dreams…only to find out…I need to dream bigger…but…what do I have left to dream about, when all is said and done?  Do I even know how?  Are the dreams already there, as I suspect, locked inside of me, locked down and afraid to come out, lest they actually be seen and brought to fruition?  If I dig deep enough, will I be able to find them?  Unearth them?  Bring them to the surface?  Shine the light of day upon them and breathe true life into them?  Will I be able to find Me in there?

Lucky me, I am so focused on dirt and rock and the need to claw my way down below, to strip forth the roots of this tree, to expose the me I know is in there somewhere that I cannot yet find, I fail to look up, fail to notice the sky growing solemn and menacing at the same time.  I fail to notice black and green roiling clouds.  I do not hear, do not feel, the rumbling growl of approaching thunder.  I do not feel the shift in the air, the ozone sizzle that stings my eyes and makes me sniffle.  I do hear the whip crack trill of the lightning striking; I am thrown back by the blast as it strikes the heartwood of my tree, not merely breaking it open, but exploding the inner recesses outward, revealing dark swirls amidst the pale yellowed core of the tree.

I can no longer deny it; the tree is me, in effigy.  Here I stand, sundered by the will of the Universe, spread out, spread open, splattered into so much shrapnel and splintered slivers.  Here are all my dark shadows, all the scar tissue, all the broken pieces that when assembled transmit me to the masses.  Here I am, struck dumb and silent, smoke burning my throat, tearing my eyes, peeling away the somber matter that hangs over me like veils from a past I no longer sustain.

I pick myself up, dust away the ash and dust and little bits of nefarious ephemera that persist in clinging to me.  I might as well get this over with now.  As clear as this celestial push is, as pure as the motives here are, I cannot deny that this is the best and most perfect time to delve in with both hands, mindless of  scrapes and bruises, to rip away the unnecessary bondage I have spent so many years wrapping around myself.  To pry loose that which I need most to bring about my own clarity and release my vision, loose my spirit upon my own stead.

I step into the debris, mindless of the poking and prodding, the sharp gouges, the biting fingers, trying to hold me back, pressing to tie me back down.  I start to grab whatever I can find and fling it away.  I am not even stopping to see what I pick up and throw over my shoulder.

There is the house.  I wasn’t too picky when I bought the first one.  All I wanted was three bedrooms and to be close to my son and his father’s house.

There is the tie to my son.  Wanting to be physically closer.  Emotionally closer again.  There is a lot of fine detail that must be worked on there.

There swings my job, working for myself, but without the much finer detail.  All that much needed detail, to expand and expound upon all things there.

There goes my writing.  Not enough clarity there either.  Too little sketched out to be useful.  Barely enough to keep things flowing along.

So much for my drawing and painting; somehow it was set alongside the road and abandoned when a frailer time hit.  I need to flesh out those bones so much more.

There stands that good man, tall and slender, with the glint in his eye from staring into the sun, just as I requested.  You know, there is not so  much I’d change about him.  I do need to change the way I deal with him, so unused to being happy or content am I.

Where is the car?  The one I can’t even drive due to fear and insecurity all over again?  Put that one on the list of things to do.  Must find said car.  Get into it.  Ride that pony one more time.  Until I am ok doing it once more.

Here is the income to support the family, the children, to get them into different programs and much more.  Here is the safety net I have needed.  Nevertheless, there is so much more.  So much more out there to be sought, if only I can pry deeper down and chuck things out and keep them straight.  If I can set my path, I can find a way to navigate.  If I can just figure out where I want to go, the how I want to get there will fall into place.

I come down to the very core, the exact center, of all that I am, all that was this tree.  I stand up, stretching out my stiff back, surveying the damage I have caused in my inquiries and harried reachings and gropings.

I can see there shining like a star above all, the Rescue Ranch, that has for so long meant the world to me.  Even as I see the promise that I made to that wonderful man, that I would not separate him from his family, would never come between him and them.  I stand by that.  I am not one who would force such an inhumane choice upon anyone.  I see that there must be changes made in the application of achieving this goal, but as yet, I am not certain which way to go, or how to go about doing it.  Although I am certain I am not giving either the Ranch or the man up for anything.

There is working for myself, and so many details to pick up and poke around and set into an order that makes some sort of sense for me.  There is the phone work, which is going so tremendously well I almost cannot believe it.  Though I know that I want more.  I want to step out more into the Healer role.  I want to step more into the Teacher role, outside of home-schooling of my daughter, and of myself.  I also know that my writing needs to take more precedence.  I know my artwork needs to take more precedence.  There are dolls dancing in my dreams, talking to me about the way my hands move across the substrate of their flesh and bring forth the living beauty of them.  There is poetry to write and to recite.  There are fibers to be woven and knitted together.  There are teatimes to be taken, one sip at a time.  So many things, each in its own time, must be separated from the herd, taken down to brass tacks, evaluated, determined, investigated and set out into the world on two steady feet to take growth and boom forward.  To blossom and create and procreate.

There is my family.  The children of my hearth currently among us.  The children of my hearth that will be joining us soon enough.  From old sources, as well as from new sources.  There is a great deal of detail needed to clarify things with family, from handling former fathers, to incorporating current households, to moving on and expanding things in all directions.  Here lives too much fear and shyness and inability to reach for what I want and for what I hope and desire for fear of all that I want being taken away by cold uncaring hands.  This place requires patience and compromise by one and all.

Speaking of households, there comes the need of a new house.  A new dwelling, with new specifications, new ways of filling things, new ways of letting go of things, new ways of interpreting the way things come together and what it all means to me, and to us as a family, to everyone involved.

There is the business of education, of my own, that of my children, and we as a family together at large.  There are rules and expectations and evaluations and so much more.  Details.  Details.  The devil is in the details and we need to make that devil earn his meals here if he is to remain and to prosper along with us, as we plan to do.

There is training the dog.  Deciding what to do about the bird.  Figuring out who I am and who I want to be.  Dealing with all the detritus from my past.  As well as that from the boyfriend’s past as well.  So many places to touch, so many scars to break open and scrape away the old and the dead.  So much new wood now bursting to shove out shoots and to begin new growth.  I simply need to go in, decide what I want to grow and in which direction it should go, and set things into the ground so that I may nurture and encourage them.  Feed them well.  Water them plentifully without over-watering.  Prune them back as situations adjust and grow.

At least now, I can take that step back, free from my ire and my angst, and look more clearly upon these little seedlings straggling before me.  Now, I can release all of this garbage I have been carrying around on my back and continue the process I have only started here with this clearing away of so much deadwood.  First a shower, and a meal, and then I shall come back, take each little wisp of new life, and delve into its mysteries and where we want it all to go this time.

This time I will seek out the heavens and beyond before I entertain any sort of limit to my goals and desires.  I shall fly on gryffin wings and soar, breathing dragon’s flame and dragon’s desire all over everything, purifying my way, burning away my fears.  I do not expect an easy path.  I do not expect instant perfection.  I do however believe I shall achieve and over-achieve all my goals.  I shall surpass all my very own dreams.

Surely, above all else, I shall prove once again that I am blessed and ever shall be.

Tabitha Kietero

http://knittingjourneymanredux.blogspot.com/
http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/
http://thesilkenthread.wordpress.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

August 20, 2009 at 11:04 pm

Drawing Out The Muse

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october_26a_017b

I find myself in the uncanny position of not only attempting to contact a Muse—but of trying to entice said Muse to my side.  I find myself seeking the Muse, begging for inspiration and freedom from my fears.  I am not all together certain how to go about doing this.  Usually, my Muses come to me.  Usually, they are angry, agitated, roaring, ready to thump my backside in order to get me motivated and moving and to keep me steady on my path.

Not this one.  Not the one I seek this day.  My Muses of Writing are always there for me.  Always steady.  Always threatening to give me another good whack should I fail to show up at the page.  They truly do not ask for much.  I must simply show up—and allow my pen to move across the paper.  Even if only for the allotted time.  Even if I write the purest drivel imaginable.  My job is to show up.  So, that’s what I do.  Most of the time.

Not this Muse.  This Muse is different.  Maybe it’s my attitude towards my art.  I need more assistance here, more subtle persuasion, more gentle pressure and loving grace when it comes time for me to pick up colored pencil and draw something—even something as simple as a blade of grass.  I fret so here—whereas with my writing I just do it.  With this, once upon a time when I was young I threw caution to the wind and never minded how silly my scribbles and scrawls would appear to any other.  I drew for me.  For the pure pleasure of it.  I drew horses.  Wild horses.  Tame horses.  Mythical horses of rainbow colors.  Endless horses, bounding all across my pages, my books.  These horses always had such amazing adventures—while I stayed trapped inside and all alone, drawing and imagining.

I never worried about my writing this way.  I never cared what people thought.  I write for me.  I still do.  Stubborn in my surety about my writing.  Some will always scoff, yet, I’ve always blown them off.  I have an innate knowledge and faith in my talent as a writer—no matter how much room I need to grow in my craft yet.  But as an artist?  One slight insignificant gaze cast wrongly or hesitating word, even a bit of over-enthusiasm, I am all aquiver and pained.  Unsure all over again.  I become unable to decide if I should begin anew, continue as I am or just give up and let it all go.  I set myself up, loving great art and studying it as much as I have, as much as I do.  So many talented people, so many amazingly great gods of art, for me to compare my own meager lines to and show where I lack the most.  I seem doomed from the start in this way.  And yet…

And yet—I know.  I know better here.  I know I have to start somewhere.  So, I know I am able.  I know I am capable.  I know I need to work at it.  I know I need to practice.  Where is my Helper then?  Where is my Guide?  Where is my Muse to assist me with this?  Where is the one who can help me navigate this tide?

How do I draw her out?  Is she even a her?  What if it’s a him?  Will he be crass?  Too demanding?  A sexist pig?  She could be too, just as much as he.  What then?  What if we clash?  What if he makes me feel bad?  What if I turn away. put down my pencils, and turn away to hide, forever more, this side of my inner artist, the one crying now, begging to be let out, set free….Would a Muse really do that?  Would a Muse really do that to me?

Some days, I wonder.  After all my other Muses have done to me.

Muse of Art.  Muse of pencil and pen and dart.  Muse of paint and brush and glue.  Muse of glitter and sparkle and haze.  Muse of vision and clarity and expression.  I beg of you.  Please come to me.  Heed my cries, my pleas.  My vision has gone grey and muted.  I am far too much alone, cowering and afraid of taking even one step by myself.  Lend me your hand.  Lend me your knee.  Whatever it takes to set me free.  Dearest Muse, please, I beseech thee.  Come and inspire me.

prompt from: the House of Muse

written by Tabitha K

http://knittingjourneymanredux.blogspot.com/
http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/
http://thesilkenthread.wordpress.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

July 30, 2009 at 2:41 pm

Outsiders Family

with 3 comments

prompt found at http://www.lostsoulcompanion.com/

via  http://www.dailywriting.net/dailygrind.htm

100_2198

I’ve said it too many times before.  I am an Outsider.  I’ve always been an Outsider,  I’ve always been searching.  I’ve always been too afraid to be the person I really want to be.

What happens when one Outsider takes up with another Outsider?  Do you think we can recognize our own kind?  Whether the other one will openly admit to the Outsider status or not?

I knew the moment I saw him that we were kindred spirits.  Of course, I was fed a lot of felonious information about him before we met as well.  That turned out to be fine in the end.  We got over that.

We were friends.  Real friends.  I trusted him implicitly from the start.  For me, that may be the strangest thing of all.  Me.  Trusting a man.  And not even a thought about using my feminine wiles to entrap or twist things where he was concerned.  I admit, I set him up on a pedestal.  I expected him to keep me safe, without being as base as every other man I had ever known.

I knew all along, talking to him, what he was.  An Outsider, like me.  In conversation one night, he even admitted as much to me.  I don’t know if anyone else had ever heard such a thing from him.  He is such a good man.

Slipping from friend into the role of lover was, not always an easy process for me.  Any kind of relationship is tough on me, with all my baggage.  After trying for so much of my life to fit into molds that weren’t made for me just to please other people…and failing miserably.  Here was a man who knew me, knew all my foibles and misdeeds.  A man who stood by me regardless.  Held my hand and rubbed my back and wiped my tears.

Then we were alone together, much closer than friends can ever be, truly within one another’s space.  Working our way even deeper into one another’s hearts.  Having always been an Outsider, I was afraid.  Afraid the relationship part would destroy the friendship. I am afraid of any relationship.  And here was a man from whom I could not escape, even should I want to.  He knows me so well.  Plus, he is the only man I care about enough to stop fighting things, stop baiting, stop running when he asks.  He says please and I am defenseless.

Despite all the inherent fears that play havoc with me during this time, as we strive to build the foundation of our future together, I have to stop and look around.  Here I am, allowed to be my Outsider self, in all my glory.  Here I am able to do my work, to write all day if I so wish, to tear the kitchen table to pieces and stack it high with magazines and newspaper clippings, to cordon off the den as I pilfer through fabrics and patterns in search of just the right things for that perfect moment.  Here I am able to say let’s go for a drive so we can find some cool trees for me to take pictures of so I can bring them home to sketch and to paint.  I have a man who routinely bits up sticks and twigs and brings them home for me, anxious to see what doll will come forth from my fevered mind, once the energy to work it hits me.

What sort of family life can we have?  I am an Outsider.  I have given birth to Outsiders as well.  Are they born or are they raised that way?  I think we are born and raised.  Some born to it; some raised to it; some both born and raised,  I am a born and raised Outsider.  I am always on the outside looking in.

All I can say is I now have a network of Outsider friends.  We are not in daily contact.  That is simply not how we work.  But we do have contact.  We do know another of our own kind when we see them.  I cannot perfect things for my children, but I can help them acknowledge and find their own ways, their own space.  And I can include them in mine.

written by:

Tabitha

Written by Tabitha Low

July 22, 2009 at 6:21 am

Standing At The Dig Tree

with 6 comments

Prompted by standing in front of the dig tree,

found here:  http://www.outbackonline.net/digtree/dig_main.htm

 

DSC08018

 

 

I don’t want to dig anymore.

I don’t want to think anymore.

My head is killing me.  Every little thing I turn to catch a glimpse of today is bringing tears to my eyes.

I don’t want to play this game anymore.

I just want to turn around, go back to bed, pull the covers up over my head and pretend I never have to move again.

I can’t do that either.  I know that.

The kids need to eat…the dog has to pee. 

So many people are depending upon me, my calming voice, my compassionate sense of integrity…at least that’s what they tell me.

 

How did I get to be this person? 

It is what I always wanted to be, always wanted to do, just not the way I thought it would be.  This isn’t exactly the how of what I wanted things to be.  I never wanted to be at the telephone’s beck and call day and night.  I do so much better with people when we are talking in person. 

Then there are my children.  All I ever wanted was a family, a safe place for the kids, for me.  A space we could trust. 

Everything is all in the details.  I have what I want, basically, mostly, simply not in the fashion that I have been wanting it.

it is in my power to change the way things are, to turn them in the direction I am wanting them to go. 

But my question returns again and again to how…

 

Let me blame it on the coming full moon….let me blame it on the weather…let me blame it on the economy..something..whatever excuse it takes to make me feel less weak and less out of control…less tossed about in stormy seas….

 

But, I can’t do that.  I hate blaming any and everything else.  I don’t like that.  I would rather accept the blame, man up and take the responsibility, even when I know it’s not me, not mine to shoulder and bear.  I know it’s easier for most people to blame others rather than accept things as their own issues.  Life with those exes taught me a lot about that.  More than I care to mention. 

 

So, where do I go from here?  What do I do?

Where do I start?

 

I was asked this question today, via bloglandia: “If no one had ever told you who you were, who would you be?”

 

Oh, the places within me that resonate for that question, crying to be heard, to be understood, to be set free…

I have no choice now, now that my whining here is done.

I have to pick up my shovel and go digging…

I will let you know what I find.  It may be easier for me to tell you than it is for me to tell myself…

Thanks for listening…

 

written by Tabitha K

http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/

http://knittingjourneymanredux.blogspot.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

June 5, 2009 at 6:38 pm

Mirror, Mirror

with one comment

Prompt found at:

http://dailywriting.net/mirrorceremony.htm

 

Sweet ever-lasting life, here I am again, wandering through these corridors, trying to find the way, any way, the right way.  I know how I got here, trapped in the castle of my own mind.  I am not so certain how to get back out again.  I wander these halls, back and forth, up and down.  I don’t know what I am looking for.  There are so many locked doors.  Words like ‘oubliette’ scripted across brass plaques hanging across the thresholds.  This is my mind; this is my place.  I have been here countless times before, but I’ve never felt so lost, this discombobulated. 

There are whispers here.  The very walls speak, in hushed tones.  I am not afraid.  These voices are familiar to me.  I hear them every day.  Those shy voices, not always sweet or mild, but always consistent.  One may call them intuition, gut instinct, the higher self.  I know them simply as The Voices.  There is no meanness in them.  There is no taunting.  They keep the bitter voices from my past away.  These voices now, they lift me up; they support me.  Yet, as I wander like some lost princess in a faery dream, they offer me no assistance.  I hear the sound of them all, but am able to discern no words.  I cannot fathom why they should turn from me in this manner.

I keep on walking.  There is a thick layer of dust everywhere.  It clings like murky disillusionment, caught in the spider’s web, turned into stunning silks of greys and browns, coverlets to protect this world from turning old and disintegrating.  I used to love to amble through these wide halls.  There used to be torches every few feet, set deeply and soundly into sconces.  There used to be well-polished chandeliers in every room.  Musicians playing in the ballroom.  People dancing.  Others with which to while away the hours, talking and laughing, exploring the depths of the place, inside and out.  The castle is surrounded by a huge garden, full of flowers, tall trees, chattering birds.  Or at least it used to be.  Every time I find a door leading out I find myself at the entrance to a  mammoth labyrinth, overgrown, dark, and strangling.  Whenever I look out any window, I see the same thing, all over again.  This hungry ravaging labyrinth, lying in wait to swallow me up inside.

How did all of this happen?  Where did all the glow go?  Why did everything start to die off?  What happened in here?  Better yet, why seek out the past?  There is no reason to cast blame, to find out who could be responsible.  What is done is done.  Better to let it go and leave it lie.  Better to touch it, hold it, kiss it good-bye and lay it all to rest. How do I bring back the light to my inner realm?  The life?  To whom can I go to hire cleaners to scrub and dust and buff?  Where can I go to gather up my violin players and pianists?  Where is he with flute and fife and drum?  Let them come to me and play.  Let me play.  Let me roam with freedom and glee throughout these hallowed halls of memory.  Let me taste love, success.  Let me know me once again.

It is no easy process this.  It took time to sink into ruin.  It will take time to raise it up again.  Where can I find paint and brush?  Maybe even just a crayon or two.  How can I part these heavy leaden curtains, bring back the light, the glow of the Moon?  I am more than willing to get down on my hands and knees, use my shirt to scrub away the grime.  I shall use my tears to wash away these cinders.  Let my castle be my own once again.

Please.  Oh please.  Just give me a clue.  Give hint to which direction I should turn.  I am not afraid of hard work.  I am afraid of the gloom.

I hear one whisper, now louder than all the rest.  I am drawn to the mirror, gallant and gilt, standing at the end of the hall.  I see a face there, a fabulous conglomeration of reds and bronzes.  My own wind dragon, beckoning from the other side of the mirror.  Which side is mine?  Where do I truly belong?  How do I fix things?  If things can change on one side, surely they can change on the other.

I reach out, my fingertips stroking the chilled silver surface, as my dragon friend writhes like a dog, trying to get his head scratched through the filmy glass between us.  The scent of burning amber floods my mind.  Something reaches out, grabs me.  I am off.  I fly.  I can see nothing at all around me in the split second it takes for me to be snatched from one realm to not quite the next.

When I am able to see, I find myself In-Between.  There is nothing here, just me, just my dragon floating gently in the non-air around me.  There is no reason to ask silly questions, so I skip the normal ‘where are we?’ and head straight for, ‘what should I do now?’  Dragon chuckles, chuffing warm air into my hair to calm me.  I get no other response.  It seems everything then is to be left up to me.  I shake my head.

Who am I?  The Queen of Dreams?  Do I know what to do?  Or even where to start if I did have a clue?  I am seeking guidance and receiving none.  I look around once more.  Dragon does not pause.  I see support before me.  I am not alone.  That is where I shall start.  What to do now?  I dragon ride is surely called for.  I reach out and grab one hefty paw.  He helps draw me up so I can swing onto his back.  Time to take a ride and see what we can see along this side.  Time to find that space and then decide.

 

 

Dragon in the Mirror

Dragon in the Mirror

 

 

written and drawn by Tabitha K

http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/

http://knittingjourneymanredux.blogspot.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

June 5, 2009 at 4:12 am

Catcher Of Dreams

with 5 comments

prompt taken from : http://www.squidoo.com/little-atheletics

Heartwood Tree, in a pool of tears and blood

I am in that place in my life where all my dreams have come and gone.  When I was a younger lass, I had so many dreams.  I wanted it all.  I would write my novels by day, while the children played happily at my feet.  My husband, loving and supportive, would come home from his work and give me a kiss on the cheek.  We would all sit down at the table to eat dinner together.  Nights were for family time.  Bathing the children, reading them stories to put them to sleep. Time to cuddle and snuggle with the husband in front of the tv, while I knit sweet things for the home and family.  Sleeping arm in arm beside the love of my life.

My dreams seem so small now.  I never wanted to be famous.  I just wanted to be loved.  I almost thought I had these things that I thought I wanted so badly not too long ago.  It was harder to let go of the dreams than it was to release the reality.

Here I am, in a new space, facing a new day, needing new dreams.  Now I am a single woman, with two children, sleeping with a dog beside me in the bed instead of a husband.  I have had my head down for too long, fighting just to stay afloat, much less trying to live, or have dreams, or even goals beyond the mortgage is paid and there is food on the table and the kids have clothes.

It is time for me to go out and seek new dreams.  Not just seek them out, but to catch them, hunt them down, capture them, drive them home into my heart, feed them, nurture them and make them grow.

It has been too long since I was able to stop and think about what I want, about where I want to go.  I have been living moment by moment, praying the future would be good once I got there, but that isn’t the way to go.  This isn’t what the Buddha meant by living in the moment.  You must live in the moment, but know the future is coming and be ready to absorb and experience it as well.  Living in the moment is not about letting go of your past, as it is what made you who you are.  It is not about letting go of the future, for that is what you shall be, who you shall become.  You must live in the present moment, ever mindful of the past and future and how they all coincide within the present moment.  I had lost sight of that.

When I was younger, before I turned ten and began to actually write, I had two dreams in my life.  What I wanted to be when I grew up.  I wanted to be a cowgirl and a veterinarian.  Well, after some interning at a local animal hospital, very temporary, I decided, no, cutting animals open and poking around in their insides was not something I could handle.  Let me take care of them before and after, but no knives and no needles for me.  I never really gave up the cowgirl idea, but we’ll come around to that in a bit, I suppose.

At about ten years of age, I started writing.  Poetry.  I was in a very religious phase then.  This is also when I set about researching every religion I could get my hands on.  When I turned against Catholicism for good.  I slowly came to realize that I wanted to write, as a career choice.  It was about this time the thought of becoming a teacher entered into my growing little brain.  Why not combine the two?  I always wanted to teach younger children, pre-school into kindergarten, sometimes even the first grade.  I loved children at that age.  I still do.

I never pursued it.  As I went through public school as a student, I watched how some teachers were treated, how some where reviled and how others were glorified.  If a teacher is not teaching and more than 80% of all her classes are failing, she should not be allowed to crow about tenure so she can keep her job—she should be fired outright.  Whereas a teacher with a genuine medical disability who misses school periodically but is successful in teaching and inspiring her students should not be dismissed due to her medical absences.  Add into the entire process of me not being taught anything new since about fifth or sixth grade….I had moved around so much that I had already been taught in earlier grades what the higher grades struggled with, leaving me cold and bored with the education process.  Which then caused me turn to my writing that much more.  There lay one dream down, heartlessly murdered by a bureaucratic system that simply did not care. I allowed that one to drown in its own blood, as I stepped over its corpse, hoping a new star would shine in my life.

Writing became my everything.  My passion.  My escape.  My release.  It is all I did, all I could do, other than read, and pray.

A new dream did surface, however strange it seemed.  I wanted to be a Priest.  Not just any old priest either.  I did not want a congregation, was not called to preach nor to enlighten.  I wanted to be a Jesuit monk.  I wanted access to the documents the Vatican hides from the light of public consumption.  I wanted to work to translate the ancient archaic documents.  I wanted to uncover the hidden secrets of the world’s religions’ ideals and ideas.  I wanted to see the Truth in black and white, not someone else’s translation or interpretation.  I wanted to Touch God through His Word drawn out on paper by His Chosen Men – and Women.

Alas, I have no penis.  So, no priesthood for me.  Another excellent aptitude for study tossed away because of the rules of the system.  I do not trust nuns, so becoming a nun was not a valid option for me.  I barely ever entertained that thought, it makes my stomach twist so.  It is a genetic flaw in me from my mother having been beaten so badly when she was younger and in convent school, or so I tell myself anyway. Not that she wasn’t beaten; she still bears the physical scars visible to this day where everyone can see them.   My mother nearly became a nun.  She was a very devout Catholic.  Then she met my dad and had me.  I never even knew I was technically a Catholic til I was a teen-ager.  No one ever told me.   I knew my mother had been Catholic, but that had never had anything to do with me.  I wasn’t raised with any specific religion.  All my religious training came from what I learned from others and what I taught myself from books, once I decided it would be a good thing to do, at about the age of ten or thereabouts.

Always a writer, that was a dream.  Not a dream, but a Dream, capital D.  I graduated high school and I ran away.  School left such a horrid taste in my mouth, I decided to forego college.  The original thought was for a year or two.  I always planned to go back to school, some sort of college, even if I got a liberal arts degree with a heavy literature and creative writing emphasis.  That, too, was not to be.

I met a man.  Someone to save me from me.  Someone to give me all my dreams with the touch of his hand, the sweetness of his kiss.  We married.  It was servitude.  It was all about his needs.  I lost myself.  My dreams centered around making him happy, keeping him satisfied and coming home.  Too late, I realized it wasn’t me who kept him from being happy.  Too late, I realized I was more than good enough for him, but he wasn’t at all good enough for me.

I did take writing classes here and there during the marriage.  I did other things as well, struggling while he told me on one hand to pursue whatever made me happy while on the other ridiculing me and cutting me down at every opportunity.  I gave up, in the end, because trying to make him happy was too large a job for me to have any other focus or ideal.

Push came to shove, I found myself, without surprise, legally separated, still involved with the husband on way too many levels, hopping into a rebound relationship which gave me nothing but trouble and a beautiful little girl.  The divorce was final and the husband and I were reconciling, moving back in together.  Nothing changed with him, but everything was changing with me.  This is not the life I wanted for my child.  I did not want her to grow to believe this was how things had to be, how lovers treated one another.

I went to massage school.  I found my own place.  I worked hard at first, until it dawned on me; this was not where I wanted to be.  Although it took only a couple weeks for me to realize that actual hands-on massage healing was not for me, I learned a great deal.  It did not endear the human population to me anymore than I was already endeared, which was not very much at all.  I did meet some incredible people though, some of whom I still speak to today, often.  Not to mention, one of the guest teachers ended up fathering my second child, my son.

I have regrets.  I have a ton of them.  The difference is, now, from where I am sitting, I wouldn’t change a single thing in my past.  If I did, I would not be where I am right this minute, and that would be a terrible shame to miss out on the things that are going on in my world right now.

I gave in to pressure and tried my best to create an actual family.  Too bad the father didn’t understand the concept of a true family; the poor man still doesn’t either.  There were no dreams there.  That man successfully killed everything I had had left to hold dear.  I didn’t struggle so much to realign myself with my dreams or my ideals, as I fought simply to hold on to today, just right here.  I couldn’t find a dream.  The best I could do was set up some goals.  He still did his best to create turmoil and cause me to fail.

I am stronger than that.  I am stronger than him.  I am better than him.   I am determined to win.  I had a one-year goal plan.  I made it all in two.  It may have taken me longer to get there, but I did get there, with bells on.

Here I am, again on a cusp.  I fought for my family.  Now it’s time to fight for myself.  That’s what I am doing.

I sift through the detritus that is my past, digging through the silt and the ash.  There is so much scar tissue.  Not all of it is healed.  Not everything is scabbed over yet.  There are many deep grievous wounds that still suppurate and bubble over.  Some from too long ago.  There is nothing really anymore that I can do, other than to treat them, and therefore myself, that much more gently.  I can apply the salves and the packs and the bandages, but sometimes healing takes a very long time and there is nothing else to be done other than waiting out the process.

Yet, I can hear them, buried, profoundly rooted, screaming and sobbing, begging me to find them, to unearth them, to let them breathe, let them live again, even for just one moment.  All my tools seem to have been lost along those myriad roads all these years.  I must get down on my hands and knees and claw my way through, probing into harsh unyielding tissue, grown rock-solid and diamond-hard, nearly impenetrable.  I have no fingernails to begin with, and now I am down to bloody stubs, shredding through using the flesh and bone of my fingers in my efforts to set my own precious self free.  However will I get a garden to grow in such inhospitable soil?  However will I manage to trench in far enough to allow my dreams to suck air, much less drag them kicking and screaming to the surface and to the light of day?

All of that makes no never-mind to me.  I have a job to do and I am a very focused creature once I set my mind in motion.  I am a daemon possessed as I listen to the pitiful cries and mews of those Dreams, those tiny hungry babies locked in the retreat of my mind.  I fight, fight for their life, fight for mine.

Maybe if you saw me you would be surprised.  I would not be, not at all.  I know my hair is wild and savage and flying all over the place as I shake and toss it angrily out of the way time and again.  I know my body is being racked with tremors that I cannot shake, puns be damned, sweat streaming off me in rivulets, staining my body and the ground surrounding me.  The ground itself swells and heaves, like a volcano attempting to shove its way up through the barrier of rock and stone and soil, as if it would jettison up the dreams if only it could simply to remove the arduous pain of my scratching and biting as I burrow in more and more.  Tears pour by the bucketsful from my eyes.  I am nearly blind from sweat and tears and the blood from my hands as I periodically reach to knuckle the tears away.  I feel as if I have stumbled into some hot briny caldron, so rises the wetness up too close to me.  I feel I am in the Giant’s big black kettle, being turned into wild woman soup.  Nothing stops me.  I may have to pause to make macaroni and cheese for my children, but I never give up on my dreams.  Not any more.  I will always return to dig up more until we are all set Free.

Eventually, after months of excavation, procrastination, remonstration, finally I have pulled a few dreams free from their mire.  They sure are not pretty.  They need a good scrub, some polishing, and lots of genuine love and encouragement.

Here, this little lump of green, all wadded up into itself, gone far more than fetal in position, this was my Dream of being a Writer, capital W.  This is my dream to be the Great Novelist, the Great Short Story Creatrix, the Ever-Musing Poet.  She needs a lot of special care, this little one.  So near to my heart is She.  My oldest, my most-beloved Dream, still struggling to be the Seed, to find the soil to set down in, to gather her forces and grow roots and sprout forth into an ever-amazing, ever-blooming wonderful Tree.

This, this smashed bit of ochre, this too was a Dream.  Something I had done long ago, but overlooked, forgotten, hadn’t really thought much about nor allowed much to rest upon its abilities.  It whispers in its sweet little voice to draw, to pick up the crayon, the pencil, to put it to paper and draw draw draw.  Let go of the fear and step ahead.  Paint and glue and collage and work into things far more gracious.  This little thing longs to be a huge towering Redwood Tree in my Forest.  Start small.  Start with the pencil.  Grand things shall from this tend.

Here is a small black piece, hard and soft, like a lump of West Virginia coal dug out of the humble walls of a basement to be thrown into the furnace to heat the entire house overhead.  This, this is my dream of, Healing.  I didn’t want to be a psychic.  I’m just good at it.  I wanted to Heal people, to help people Heal themselves, to Guide them in their journeys.  I don’t want to do massage work.  I want to do Energetic work, Soul Work, Shamanic work , Shifting Consciousness work.  I want to Counsel people, help them find what they are looking for, help them see what it is they truly seek and help them as they find their way.  This is me.  This is what makes me happy, what fulfills me.  Being the shoulder to cry on, patting the tears dry and giving them something of value to hold on to as they carry on, so they can support themselves along the way.  It is not me.  It is merely what they need for and of themselves expressed through me.

I had to force and plunder to reach this other one, so tiny had it become, charred and blackened, but some of the indigo almost visible through the cracking.  This one, this broken shattered whimpering thing was once my Dream of being a Teacher.  Someone who Guides and Inspires.  That is me too, part of my Healing work, part of my Destiny.  I have turned so far against the mainstream of things that work as a school teacher, in either a private or public arena, would simply not be adequate for me.  Not in this country.  This little gem, I keep turning around, redirecting, sanding, weaving, changing.  I have no desire to work in a school environment.  That part of the dream atrophied and died long ago.  I can work around the scar tissue.  I Dream of becoming a Waldorf-certified Teacher.  I do not plan to work in a school.  I definitely plan to home-school my children throughout their lives, just as I continue my own education every single day of my life.  I do plan to have children in my life, all my life, and wish to do what I can to offer them the nurturing and educational space they need to be truly great intellectuals and people.  Let this one sprout, bloom, and rival the sky with its heavenly scents and ideas.

Down at the end, I found an old shoebox, sun-stained, muddied, looking as if a herd of elephants had stampeded over it, more than once.  When I managed to loose it from the death-grip my mind-soil held upon it, it took far too much work to prise the lid off that box, so tightly squelched and abused was the whole thing.  That alone would not be enough to cause me to give up.  I nearly missed it, so nearly microscopic had it become.  This timid teensy little thing, shaking and choking on fear, cowering down in the darkest shadows in the furthest corner of the box from where I sat, peering in at it with trepidation in my eyes and soul.  I didn’t know what to do, what to make of it.  I reached in to save it, retrieve it, only to have the vile little beastie nip at me with viper sharp teeth.  It drew blood!  The fiend!

I called this one, long ago, the “Barbie Dream”.  You know Barbie. The doll.  ‘The bitch has everything.’ my mother used to tell me.  I did not play with Barbie growing up.  She was unseemly.  I had Charlie’s Angels dolls, and a doll called Darci, who was a model.  I loved them.  They were tough, independent and better than men.  Barbie was a sell-out.  The Barbie Dream is the house, the kids, the husband, the cars in the garage, the white picket fence, the well-behaved dog.  You know, the “perfect every-day family”.  Ozzie and Harriet.  Wally and the Beav’s parents.  Samantha and Darren in their utterly topsy-turvy yet oh-so-perfect world.  Where everything looked good.  Where families were devoted to one another.  The ‘perfect’ world.  The ‘perfect’ life.

This one scares me, more than all the rest put toghether.  The rest I know I can do, I can accomplish, I can achieve.  They all depend upon me, just me.  Even if I am never published, if no one ever buys one piece of art, even if I never have another child or come in contact with another child, even if all my clients desert me, they all depend upon me ultimately, all those Dreams.  This one, this Dream right here, depends on someone else as well.  A man, at that.

I trust the man, this man.  Finally, I have a good good man in my world and in my heart.  I do not trust ….that Dream.  Depending upon a man, even this man.  I do not trust that it won’t seem perfect at first before disintegrating into chaos and bedlam, leaving me lost and cold, hurt and angry, devesatated and all alone, struggling again.  I am afraid of this dream.  Afraid to take it up, cuddle it to my breast, succor it and cede it.  But I Want it.  Want it.  I want to be happy.  I want that family.  So, I would prefer a barb-wire fence to white picket, but a fence is a fence.  So, I want a much bigger house, because I want more children of my own, and guests and visitors and new-comers and friends to come and stay with us.  I want the marriage, the snuggling into someone in front of the fireplace while we each do our things, together.  I can knit.  He can read.  Someone who supports me, the way I support him.  I am not asking for perfection.  I am not expecting a rose-garden, except maybe I do.  I expect there to be thorns, trials and tribulations along the way, but over-all I anticipate the beauty of our love and friendship and connection to win out.  This is my Dream.  Not of a perfect life.  But, of a Good Life, a solid honest open communicative Life.  With a close-knit solid family to be the backbone and support system for all of us, children and grand-children too.  Where we are safe in our home without worrying about the ills of the world blowing our way.  Where we stand together and brave all perils, trusting in one another’s arms and embraces.

That is my Dream.  It may take this one a lot longer to grow.  This one will need a lot more tending and care, a lot more fertilizing and weeding and sorting through.  Yet, it is my Dream and it will come True.  I know.  I believe.

Here are all my dreams caught in the web of my own design.  Here is my little garden that I grow inside my heart.  Here is me finally accepting that the past is done and new things can come in now.

That is the best thing of all.

written by Tabitha K

http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

May 30, 2009 at 10:10 pm

Heart-Strings Bag

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          He pulled his cards out of the bag, an old dark green velvet thing, and stuffed the cards into his back pocket.  I was certain those dragon cards were most displeased by that process.  He held the back out to me, along with a lock of his hair twisted up in a bit of copper wire.  I slid my hand into his, gripping the bag and his hand underneath.  I clung to him for just one moment.  He gently disengaged himself, kissed my cheek.  Then he turned, and walked away.  I knew it would be too long before I saw him again.  At least I did know what I had to do while he was gone on his Journey.  I had to take one of my own.

         

          I stumbled home, unwilling to admit that tears trickled from my eyes, burning down my cheeks.  I clutched that emerald bag to my chest in both hands.  I didn’t notice how wet it grew as I did.  I staggered through my front door and threw myself onto the bench.  I don’t remember another thing, til the rooster started crowing the next morn.

 

          I awoke full of purpose.  I knew what I needed to do.  I lit the sage bundles and let them waft and clear the air.  I washed myself, scrubbed my face clean.  Changed out of my dirty dusty duds from the day before and found something clean and peaceful to wear.  I did a little sweeping and dusting to cleanse the room a bit more.  Then it was time to set to work.

 

          I turned to my shop, the wall of nooks and crannies and cabinets it had taken me so long to build by hand to my ever-changing specifications.  I started to hum under my breath, waiting for inspiration to hit me.

         

          All I did was allow the Spirit to move over me and through me.  My hands reached.  My body twirled.  I nearly danced myself silly, as the humming took on a voiceless cadence, and my skirts whipped and flew with my movements.

 

          After I was done, I saw the light had changed.  Morning had passed.  We were into the late afternoon.  Before me on the table was a vast array of items.  Some of them indeed brought more and fervent tears to my eyes.

 

          First, of course, was his lock of hair bound in the copper wire.  Beside it was a puff of cotton left from my last expedition out into the fields for picking.  A bit of wolf’s fur, bound in azure ribbon.  A lock of sheep’s wool, wrapped in upon itself.  A raven’s tail feather.  All my totem strengths and energies held in hand there.  I gently tucked them into the bag.

         

          There was a bit of parchment, all bundled up, tied with a bit of red silk thread.  I knew it on sight.  It bore the names of all my loved ones, here and that had passed on.   A vial of tears, said to be from the waters of the River Styx.  It had been passed down through my mother’s line for generations.

 

          There was a twist of salt, a twist of sand, a twist of rice.  Nearby sat the riverstone he had given me when he went away for training years ago.  The iron nail from shoeing a horse, slightly bent where it had been removed long ago.  A handful of rose petals.  I knew where each petal had come from, which bouquet, which occasion.  My breath hitched in my chest for just a second or two.  Then the golden ring that had bound me for so long, now twisted and crushed into an entirely different form. 

 

          A small pile of what to some would appear as pebbles.  One quartz crystal to help augment all the rest.  A rose quartz for clarity of heart.  Amethyst for quality of brain.  Garnet for balance of emotions.  Ruby for intensifying emotions.  Carnelian for boldness.

 

          And each in their own little bundle were the herbs.  Mugwort for vision.  Lavender for peace.  White sage for clarity.  Sweet basil to feed the dragons.  And peppermint for that minty cup of tea to help cleanse me.

 

          The final objects were an acorn from a ceremony long long ago and a big fat marble the most pure aquamarine with golden flecks threading throughout.

 

          I tucked all of these into the thick fabric of the pouch, cinched it tight to close it, and hung it at my waist by my belt. 

 

          I stood up tall, squared my shoulders and walked out the door.  It was time for my own walk-about and I had plenty of places to go.

 

written by Tabitha 

aka Raven TK

http://knittingjourneymanredux.blogspot.com/

http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

May 7, 2009 at 12:49 am

Spirit Journey

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          I am going to make a Spirit Doll.  I need to make something for me.  I need to gather up my strength and my courage and bind it in place so that it will best serve me.

          I cannot buy this guide.  I cannot allow someone else to replicate it for me.  It must come from my own heart and from my own hands.

          How can I accomplish this task?  I am of the Older Set, where things come into being when their time is right, not when any other thing says, yes, the time is good to do this thing.  The time is ripe right now for me to do this thing myself.  Even as the Moon does grow full, and others will have me say that, yes, this is the right time of the Moon to take this Journey and make this Thing.  It is simply not so for me.  My own time is now to do this thing, no matter where the Moon in Her sky.

          I gather my tools.  How can this be?  I take a long hot shower, cleansing and purging body and soul, clearing my mind with thoughts of patience and joy.  I wear clean clothes, my colours, off-white and denim blue.  I amass my hair and twirl it into a knot, holding it in place with two sticks someone else painted for my enjoyment.  Dancing girls, the geisha, in my hair today.  I find myself putting on my formal wear, my jewelry, at throat and wrist and hand.  Everything else is already prepared.

          I gather my breath, centering myself, steady and sure of what I am going, where I must go.  I set off, shutting the door behind me, leaving the string out that I might re-enter when the time arrives.

          Down the walk, past the flowers.  My head-cold no longer a bother to me.  I can smell the rose, the lily, the hawthorn tree standing next to me.  I stop at my drive, again taking air in deep, seeking to know which way on the map in my heart I should turn, which way should I go.

          One foot in front of the other, my Journey has started.  I no longer see the crushed gravel.  No longer hear the airplanes whirring overhead.  No longer feel the energy tingling through the power lines.  I can See.  I have far to go.

          Walking.  Into the clouds.  Through the dust.  Beside the Great River, swollen and muddy, straining under Her heavy load of loam and crust.  My feet enjoy the change beneath them, from packed solid dirt aching with the heat of the day to the cool smooth unsolid soil giving way at each step. 

          I hear the Voices.  The Voices, my Ancestors.  Calling to me.  Cawing.  Instructing.  Pulling me on.  Urging me.  I am one with Them.  Allowed, permitted, requested into Their Territory.

          I take one step in, in too deep, and I am gone, to the Place Above, Beyond the Land.  I am on Wing, singing through the skies, amazed by the depths of my sight, the raven song in my ears, bursting from my throat.  I am Called.  I am Beckoned.  I respond, with glee.  I arrive, at the Great Fire, where we all settle in and offer up our exchanges. 

          There is smoke in my eyes.  Tears falling down.  Hearts breaking.  A rock pounded by a hammer until it breaks in two.  I am shown the jewels I have hidden within.  The Emerald reaches out to Speak, to Touch me, to Hold my hand.  I am too weak.  Others gather near to me, cushioning me, holding me, supporting me.  I cannot back down.  This is my Gift.  I am to accept it.  It is mine to keep.

          I bow my head.  After all this has long been the one thing I seek.  I accept.  Gracious and quiet.  A humble child unable to speak.  There are kisses, so light on my cheek.  I am the Brave One.  There is no deceit.

          I find myself back on my Path.  Walking my way home, back to the street, back to my life. I must not show up alone.  For now, the Spirit Walks with me.  The one I am to use.  The one I created for my own special self, of my own special self.

          I gather with me the twigs, the moss, the stones, things fallen there at my feet.  I pick them up, one by one, and tuck them into my pockets.

          Back inside my home.  I pull the string and the door opens wide.  I am in.  Assembly begins.

          The rocking.  The rolling.  Manipulating the skin, the face.  Painting.  Imbibing.  Allowing.  So well-endowed with the Mysteries.  My Sight parting and my eyes opening. 

          There on the table before me, sitting in regal glory, sits the song of my heart, my Raven Queen.

 

 

Written by Tabitha K

http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/

http://knittingjourneymanredux.blogspot.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

May 7, 2009 at 12:47 am

Posted in RavenTK, Uncategorized

The Box

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He gave me a box, that day, when first he told me he loved me. He did not let me open the box while he stood there. He bid me wait til after he had gone away, gone back to his home, to his other world, the one without me. I could do nothing more than obey, so deep was my love for him. How was I to know what I held in my own two hands?

I was not used to being trusted. Then again, I was not used to being genuinely loved or cared for or enjoyed. Here was a man who took my breath away, with every moment, with just a smile, and the leprechaun light a twinkle in his eye. This is the man who saved my life, more times than I care to remember. It was for him, although unbeknownst to me at the time, that I shifted my path and my direction. I chose him, much earlier than when the future had deemed appropriate, but much later than Spirit would have had us together.

I turned my back on a world that would have given me, after much work and determination, everything I had ever asked for from it. But then again, I had asked for so little in the grand scheme of things. In this man, I was given my heart’s truest desire: honest true love. How could I turn away from that?

So, there I was, with that small golden brown box clasped between my two hands, my breath too fast, my head a little achy. I worried my palms might be too sweaty to carry the thing. I stood in awe, looking at the intricate carvings over the top, along the sides. There was a patch of green velvety felt along the bottom, to protect it when I set it down. I fingered the edges tenderly. What could he have possibly given me?

I went inside, curled up in my chair against the wall so the sun’s light could tumble in, burnishing the chair and me, enshrining the contents now sitting on my knees. I knew where he was, on his journey home. I knew in my heart, so deeply connected we were. I sat patient, allowing him the time to arrive at his home, to greet his dogs, so start going along with his other business, the business that would never include me, but at its conclusion would never again bother me nor raise its weary head.

I took very slow very deep breaths, practicing my meditation in the space of the few minutes I needed to feel him calm down once he was inside his house. With intrepid fingertips, I caressed the glossy wood, stroking it as I often stroked his cheek, his arm, with utmost attention to truly feeling him with all my being, not just my skin. There was no lock. There was no calamity. I tilted the top back upon its hidden hinges. The heady scent of roses greeted me.

Inside there was a note, written in his hand. “Within this box you will find my heart. I leave it in your care as it has always belonged to you.”

I knew right then I would marry him. I have never looked back. I have never wavered. And I never will.


Prompt Found At The Chocolate Box

Written By Tabitha K

http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/

http://knittingjourneymanredux.blogspot.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

April 14, 2009 at 2:53 pm

The Red, The White and The Black

with 4 comments

Two dragons set out fighting

And it is not what you’d expect

It is not the Red and the White

White has flown

Barrelling out of sight

Cast out

Set forth

And rendered

Gone

Here sits the little Red

Chest heaving with effort now

Tears in his eyes

Pride and Flames in his Heart

The Red is small, deft, apt, compact

The one who plays fair

The one who fights fair

With honour

For home and hearth and glory

The Red

He’s the One

Meant to Win

Meant to Conquer

Meant to Defeat all foes

Yet

There

At the short distance

Bellows

The Black

Raring and snarling

Clawing the air

The Black

He is Huge

Blotting out

Sun and Moon and Sky

Towering hulking

Seething wings and lashing tail

Several heads roaring

Each on its own

Armoured steely throat

Drooling pools of acids and poisons

Tongues curling and whipping

Frantic

Mad

Glittering sheathed claws

Tipped in poisoned charms

The Black is not Fair

The Black is not Just

The Black chokes of smoke and bile

Sulphur and brimstone

Dead noir eyes glittering

Devouring his opponent’s soul

With its bitter grip

The Red stands Tall

Right is Might

He bursts into the Air

With a Silent Shriek of Fury

The Black seems to never move

Already Dominating the Sky

The Red dives in

Swarming

Storming

Calling out

Calling Forth

Invoking and Casting Out

Pulling In

The Red seems to hold His Own

When it comes to this Battle

The Red is set to win the War

But

It does

It tires him so

based upon a dream by Raven TK

http://breakonthroughtotheotherside.wordpress.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

July 30, 2008 at 4:34 pm

Posted in RavenTK, Uncategorized

How Wrong

with 3 comments

How am I to decide

Which way I am

Which way to go

I come up from the water

From my icy oceanic depths

Clutching the jewels of my Mother

Gasping as air like fire

Sears my lungs

Threatening to rip me asunder

Silvery lights gleaming from above

Striking my naked flesh

Like heavy blows

I thought

I thought I heard his voice

And turning towards him

I swam

Loosing tail and fin

Shedding scales all along

Til up I scaled

Clutching sharp glittery sand

Here I wobble

On these two thin things

Struggling to know

Have I done the right thing

Good-bye to my family

Good-bye to my home

All I have now

Is this love still unknown

Written by Raven Tk

http://onthewrongsideofthemirror.wordpress.com/

Written by Tabitha Low

July 18, 2008 at 7:15 pm

Posted in A Poem a Day, RavenTK