Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Love Song to Planet Earth

You sing to me your beauty,
so I am always happy.
Your sunrises and sunsets show me 
what heaven must look like,
so I am in awe,
standing, starstruck,
gazing at the sky,
living this miracle of radiance
with a gratitude of eye.

Your forests green I walk through,
your ancient trees
singing to me
their song of All of Time.
My feet leap with joy
the length of your sandy beaches
stretching to forever,
my heart lifting at the glorious music
of your billowing waves,
my eyes following the pathways
of seabirds wheeling free
over shining waters,
answering their call,
and I am in love,
   in love,
     in love,
       in love with it all.

I am in love 
with your billion stars,
night's panoply of mystery,
of the Great Beyond,
in love with the daybreak,
creeping over the land,
in love with end-of-day
and its softening into dusky darkness.
You sprinkle my dreams with starshine,
polish golden my noontime hours,
scatter creatures all over the landscape
for my delight,
as if into the very heavens
I have blundered,
and I am always,
       forever in wonder.

Tuesday, February 26, 2013


is thinking
about maps.
How does one prepare
for a journey
when she doesnt know
where she 
is going?

The secret, she thinks,
is simply journeying 
as far as she can
between daybreak and nightfall,
then resting.

Time enough for the length
of tomorrow's trail
upon waking.

There is a little bird
traveling with her,
hopping from branch to branch
as they wander along.
She is singing,
her pretty head tilted,
a song of the forest, 
of the morning sun,
of the sky and the clouds
and the mountains.

Her birdsong
is sent
to brighten the journey.

*google image

Monday, February 25, 2013

A Howl for Sister Wolf

They come with loud voices into the wild,
setting their snares:
Game Slayer Coon Cuffs, $29.99,
Rubber Jaw Coil Spring Leg Trap,
a bargain at $13.99.

Into the mud,
or under green boughs,
they spring them open,
then retreat.

As their voices fade away,
the creatures come back
to reclaim their habitat.

Sister Wolf streaks across the clearing,
head high, yipping,
joyously running,
her freedom felt in her very cells,
blood pumping,
alive, alive, alive --
until the sudden snap,
piercing unbearable pain,
and she is held fast to the earth.

She bites at it, pulls away,
realizes it cannot be escaped.
Growls, snarls, whimpers,
and then one mournful howl.
She sinks to earth.
Pain, thirst, hunger, fear.....
and then she hears them,
coming back,
voices loud, triumphant, laughing.

Dear God, help me not to hate 
the ones who set the traps,
for I do,
and it disturbs my soul.

* images from

Saturday, February 23, 2013


Mount Arrowsmith - view from the Quay

I saw a ministering angel in the clouds today
benevolent gray wings looming over the harbour,
head tilted auspiciously,
as if she were about to empty
a basket of blessings
upon our gray little town.

Behind us, and up the hill
stood Arrowsmith,
the chill from the fresh snow 
on its peaks
riding the currents all the way down
to the Quay.
Pigeons, seagulls, and one small sparrow
hovered anxiously
near the donut shop,
hoping for necessary crumbs
which we spilled with largesse,
like ministering angels ourselves,
if only for those brief moments, 
when a few small creatures' needs
were, however imperfectly, fulfilled.

Friday, February 22, 2013

Serengeti Morn

Wildebeest during the Great Migration, Wikipedia

One million years and more
we have been crossing the great plains,
trekking to water in dry season,
returning to grassland with the rains.

We follow the route of ancient times,
leopard and lion at our heels,
crocs in the river at our ankles,
how intense their hot breath feels!

Two Leggeds encroach in all directions,
fence us off on every side,
feel entitled to the water
for which so many of us have died.

Our once connected landscape
crossed with the message: "This is mine".
We die against the fencing
watching the water trapped  behind.

On this Serengeti morn,
fresh as when all time began,
we trace an ancient pathway
here before fences of man.

Hannah at Real Toads has offered us another wonderful Transforming Friday challenge: to write in the voice of a creature of the desert. I have long ached for the wildebeest of the Serengeti, who are programmed to follow a migratory route now interrupted by miles of fences and roads. Many of them, who cant find an entry through the fencing, die looking across at the water they have traveled so far to find. Tens of thousands of them are poached also, the usual story of man taking what he wants without care for the balance of life. Sigh. I first attempted a pantoum but the lines didnt work for the message. So I borrowed the general rhythm of it, and switched things around to suit myself. 

Do check out the others who link at the Toads site. There are bound to be some amazing writes today!


Thursday, February 21, 2013

The Dreamtime

Ayres Rock -

connecting with the dreamtime
tapping into the deepest well
of our collective memories

with eyes closed, I call up
the Ancestor Beings,
here when this world
began, with its
mountains and rivers
and trees,
its air and fire
and water

when their work was
complete, they
traveled back
into the earth
and slept

sometimes their spirits 
stayed behind
in rocks or trees,
and these became
sacred places

Today we're in
the Dreaming -
in the Now-
the only time
the aborigines

Feel the spirits
of the Ancestors,
as you chant
to the beat
of the drum

Look quickly
across the campfire
and you might catch 
their shadows,
see their kind

Hear them say:
"Right now one 
of your eyes
is sleeping,
but one of them
is awake.

When you see
with both eyes,
we will awaken
from our dreaming
to join you,
and the world
will be made new"

The other day I was watching Julian Lennon's wonderful documentary Whaledreamers, a wonderful film about a gathering of aboriginal elders from all over the world, who gathered at  ancient headlands above the sea in Australia, where in old times, the aborigines would sing out to call in the whales, and they would come. They gathered in this spot, to perform that ceremony and, breathtakingly, in response to their eery song, the whales came. It was  uplifting, mysterious and utterly wonderful.

Random thoughts about the aborigines, the deep pain of the elders who mourn all that has been lost to their culture, and the mysterious Dreamtime, have been running around in my brain ever since.

Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Pure Joy on Four Legs

I watched this wonderful little guy on Monday
and he brought me joy. He is just having the
BEST time! Enjoy! 

posted at India on Facebook

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Traveler, Diverted on the Path

Traveler has been preparing
for a long journey.
She has put on all of her wolf magic,
for the going
will be hard.
Wolf head on a cord around her neck,
wolf robe on and walking stick in hand,
she sets out
on a road full of hazards
and waystations,
with one eye on the windy trees,
the other on the  rocky path 
under her feet.

Traveler has confidence in the journey.
Wolf women know much
about difficult terrain.
They have stamina and endurance
and know there are  times
when one cannot evade the fiery pit,
but must zip along, leaping,
singed whiskers and tail to show for the buffeting,
hearts singing with triumph
at the Going Through.

This time the road ahead is unknown.
She will need all of her strongest medicine.
Stalwart, she readies her heart 
for the rocky cliff,
the stumbling stones,
the mountain pass.

But when she comes to a fork in the trail,
surprisingly, the arrow points left
into a field of daffodils.
There is a pond, and food
and a comfortable den
all waiting for her.
She is told to lay her burden down
and stay within the sunshine
for a time. 

the Wise One says,
"your travel plans
have been changed.
You may rest upon the earth
a little longer, after all."

Astonished at her unexpected deliverance,
Traveler sinks down among the flowers,
looks around the sunny alpine meadow,
raises grateful eyes to the sky,
and awaits the unfolding
of yet another spring.

Friday, February 15, 2013

Sweet Fruit from a Bitter Tree

google image

I walked around the Pond of Swans,
after everyone had gone, 
the underbrush twiggy and bare,
nothing to offer comfort there.
I sought my solace in the sky.
It having no wise words to share,
the more alone was I.

And I am tired
from all the years,
of wandering this vale of tears.                    
Yet still green meadows will I seek,
there to await the sunny morn,
that follows  every season bleak
as it has since I was born.

I ask in turn the star-flung sky:
what and how and when and why?
It has no words to comfort me.
I must become the bitter tree
that bears sweet fruit for all to see,
in hopes they'll thus
remember me.


Not sure where this little ditty popped up from. 
Dont worry, kids, I'm fine.  Just a bit tired. 

I am linking this to Poets United's Poetry Pantry this Sunday - do stop by. There is always a lot of great reading on Sunday in the Pantry!

Thursday, February 14, 2013

Tree Wisdom

A wise old tree whispered
to me recently
that it is essential, now,
to move from
our heads to our hearts,
to connect our hearts' rhythm
to the ancient heartbeat
of Mother Earth.

"Align your limbs,"

she murmured,
"to feel calm and centered.
When the harsh winds blow,
grow still.

Plant your roots deeply,
so you can weather
the North Wind's
blast of cold.

"From this place of love,
be at one
with all of life.
Unfurl your branches,
Raise them high.
Reach and grow.
Embrace each year,
each circle
on your trunk
with gratitude.

Open your eyes 
to Beauty.
Open your heart
To Wonder.

"Rest your weary head
upon earth's mossy pillow.
Gaze at clouds,
at stars.
Listen to Mother Earth's
song of love
for all  creation.
Love her back,
with every beat
of your heart."

This is part of a poem I wrote for a challenge recently,  at Real Toads. As I used only a few words from this for the challenge, I offer it here, as I am under the weather tonight, and at least I'm posting Something.

Wednesday, February 13, 2013


Ella of Ella's Edge and I collaborated on this poem about chakras, a challenge for Real Toads on February 12, 2013. In this poem, it is the tree who is speaking.


[Personal identification with the infinite.
Oneness with God.
Peace. Wisdom. Love.]

Light up your eyes in wonder
Your crown of grace bejewels the midnight sky
and descends a purple robe as the myriad galaxies spin

Their mystical webs outline your canvas, your passion
your spirit arises to create,
your soul the paint,
your hands n' heart the brush

Stardust is you
the Ancients have tried to teach their mysteries
in delicate tunes
among a star-flung sky,
by a silver sea
peace, simplicity, respect
keys to the crown
as the last star descends
heed the wisdom of
the Wise Old Tree:
Head in the sky
feet on the Earth:
at one with it all!

[Indigo-clearing subconscious to channel intuition.
See Divine perfection in all things. Devotion.]

I am the Observer
I see into the vastness of forever
deep within my being
the Old Ones share their wisdom
Look through the cosmic window
into the universe's gifts
embrace each circle of life
look up
layers of blue behind shimmering wonder
I whisper to you
through indigo eyes our hearts align
in slumber we will meet
blanketed by your dreams
moonlight will transport me

Open limbs embrace
in concentric circles
the oracle delivers echoes of the past
cast in a net of dreams
blueprints of diamonds in the rough
underlying messages in a thousand tongues
and the smallest molecular intricacies
Buddha Moon winks
he reminds me clouds can comfort my head
he puts on his cobalt kimono
and white doves soar high
as we wait for Lunar Moth's dance of
luminous rippled light

[Ability to verbalize. Expressing truth through the spoken word.]

Listening to
the song of the earth,
no thoughts,
just being-
with the gray-sky morning,
with the tall black pines,
with the top of the hills,
with the sea beyond,
her everlasting waves
ebbing and flowing
on an eternal shore.

In a sea of humanity across a Cerulean canvas
where Heaven hugs the shore and kisses the sea
the ebb n' flow washes one's heart whole
It saturates the Wedding Ring quilt of Earth
whispers of blue blur throughout the day
treasured thoughts of childhood whisper
in the wind, I see secret wings soar
into my dream
through the window of blue
my dream to glide towards my love
up, up, away...

[Release emotionally suppressed trauma.
Soul/heart consciousness. Expressing love in action]

I tremble
Please, Humankind
I feel like a cracked vessel
inside, I imagine
hope buds n' swells
sun's mournful song
on gray days moves me
my emerald tears cling
to my branches

Deep in my heart I am spilling over
I witness the changing sky,
the tops of mountain peaks,
the sea green waves outlining
the Endless Knot

My heart bursts open, knowing
we are intricately connected
to the rhythm of
Mother Earth's heartbeat
My wish is for all to love her back -
tears for her ravishing
one long last look before turning face
to the morrow,
already on its way,
as this dear old earth
turns and turns,
and turns again.

[Assimilation experience. Digestion.
Positive use of personal power. Manifest goals]

Miss Topaz tip toes quietly into focus
spreading a blanket of golden trumpets
She conducts the symphony of a morning song
Her fluid hair cascades over the Serengeti
She begins her exercises: Sun salutations
She hovers above the trees, the grass,
I feel her amber kiss at noon
Her sweet whispers make me feel tall n' proud
I glow

[Utilization of creative forces into all aspects of being.
High soul procreation. Direct self toward devotion.]

Morning light flickers and ignites
the tender path I'm rooted to
Her embracing hug warms me
Her liquid light nourishes me
allowing my pockets of green spindle to climb
I feel passion radiate
her Tangerine rose fingers
awaken my heart
I slowly lunge towards her
like evaporated drops of rain on a Tiger lily's leaves
I emit heat
She playfully tickles the top of my branches
I swoon

[Ground spirit forces in body. Gain ability
to work lovingly on the human plane]

A tiny flame kindles
igniting scarlet embers
extending raw roots
spreading the surge of life
the ebb n' flow of tributaries reaching
for the deep earth
resurgence of life's promise in
the blush of day's surrender

I connect to the breath,
align mySelf with
the heartbeat
of Mother Earth,
move from head to heart,
feel the stillness at my core.

Thus, we endure.
Strong, we withstand,
our hearts,
our breath,
our lives
inexplicably attuned
to the pulse
of our Earth Mother.


Kim's prompt at Poets United's Verse First today is: Committed, a word with many meanings. I have written of this before, in prose, (The Prince of Compassion) and borrowed some of the phrases from that tale, so deeply etched in my mind is that journey with a loved one, and the words I wrote, later, to grapple with it.

Up the gray, chipped stairs,
past the gray drab walls,
gray rain drizzling down
the gray bleak windows,
the abandoned ones live here,
on their narrow beds of pain,
battling hopelessness,
looking for one small reason
to go on struggling.

And my son, thin, tall, tousle-haired, gentle,
mystic and dreamer, composer of music
and weaver of rhyme,
now lived in this landscape,
his hours marked out in paper cup pills,
naps and hospital trays.
He had walked the fine line
between daybreak and hellfire
and had fallen.
Where would his beauty
find a place to land
in halls so bleak and bare?

Up and down the halls they walk,
fragile as ghosts,
lonely souls making their solitary treks
through the labyrinths of their own minds,
land of rain-speckled windows,
tears and no more hope.

On the bare mattress,
he lies sleeping,
by his bed a note,
written in his jaggedy script:

I am Cloud.
Someone blow me away.

An electrical jolt 
zaps my heart with fear.
Down the gray hall,
the gray, drab stairs,
out into the noisy brightness
of the city street,
that parallel reality called
Normal Life,
while behind me and two floors up
my son's life hangs
in the balance.

I am Cloud.
Someone blow me away.

Sunday, February 10, 2013

Who Took the "Kind" Out of Humankind?

Toby, of Fauna Sanctuary

"It's for the good of humankind",
animals tortured in research labs.
Who took the "kind" out of humankind,
the same ones who poke and maim and jab?

They come with jolts and zaps and pokes.
They douse their eyes, terrorize their minds.
They feel like "well-intended folk".
"It's for the good of humankind."

They inject diseases into their arms.
They calibrate their work's "success".
They "never meant them any harm",
animals tortured in research labs.

They live in cages their whole lives long.
They know no sunlight, some go blind.
Their eyes reveal their mournful song.
Who took the "kind" out of humankind?

Some few are rescued and try to heal
but none forget the times so bad.
Who I'd like to see be caged for real,
are the ones who poke and maim and jab.

Because a few people have given me hope by writing to Hedgewitch's challenge to Write a Cascade poem, over at Real Toads, I challenged myself to attempt one. Right now, I am reading    The Chimps of Fauna Sanctuary, by Andrew Westoll, who spent a considerable amount of time   at a Canadian sanctuary for chimps rescued from research labs.  I am learning more than I want to know about the treatment of animals, especially chimps, in research labs. I cant stop reading, as I feel I must know, in order to do what I can to voice my objection that these situations exist at all. 

It  is not all heavy reading - there are humorous glimpses of what daily life is like to the chimps as the author develops a relationship with them. The humans in the sanctuary are marvelous beings, who  love the chimps, and do everything they can to make up for what they have endured.

The book describes how the animals are scooped from Africa (which means killing many of the tribe in order to take the one or two they "need"), a great number of them being sent to the USA,  where they spend countless years in cages inside laboratories where horrific things happen to them. This book is about some chimps who were taken from such situations and placed in sanctuary, where they are loved, and where healing is attempted. 

But, like inmates of any concentration camp, especially where medical experimentation has been done, no sentient being ever truly heals from such trauma. Bless the loving people who provide sanctuary. But I am appalled that there is not legislation to prevent these intelligent, feeling, sentient creatures from being tortured in this way EVER.

Saturday, February 9, 2013


Yesterday my older daughter, Lisa, and I drove up and over the mountain pass 
(where there still is snow  alongside the road), and went to South Beach, on the west coast, an hour and a half from here. 

This is one of my favorite views, to the left of the Wickanninish Centre.

Lisa and Penny Joy

A sign alongside the trail warned of cougar and wolves in the area - it is that hungry time for critters, at the end of winter. It gave me pause, as Penny is snack-sized, and there were eagles about, also a threat, but we carried on, as I was so desperate to see South Beach. Thankfully the critters minded their manners and stayed away. Though I did hear an eagle's cry, within the forest.

Wild Woman and Brand New Cane, which I love!

Sigh. Incredible to have lived in such beauty for ten years. It blew me away daily, never became "old". The air smells invigorating there. The "energy" is stimulating and alive.  I so miss it.

The waves were strong and roiling, with a very strong undertow. Penny had a wonderful time on the beach, running and digging and rolling in the sand. But then she ran right into the water. I hollered for Lisa who was thankfully close by. She ran into the waves to pluck Penny out just before the wave would have taken her away. She said she could feel the sand clawing at her boots, that's how strong it was. 

Even humans get swept off these rocks and disappear. When I lived there, one summer a young teen was plucked off the cliffs at South Beach, his body never found. That has happened more times than one would think, at various locations along the coast. People who live there know the power of the waves, but many tourists dont, and go too close to the edge for safety.

So we were lucky, as yesterday might have turned out very badly. Thankfully, Penny is safe.

 Relieved, after the rescue

On our way home, we passed the Kennedy Lake Bridge where the blockades  were held the summer of '93, and I reflected on those amazing days  of my life.

Catching a glimpse of the beautiful reflections in the lake, we had to pull over and snap some shots.......they dont show up too well here, but were spectacular in person. The lake was a mirror, and every cloud and mountaintop was exquisitely framed.

The day replenished my spirit.
I must get there more often,
in good weather.

Friday, February 8, 2013

Wild Woman in Love

Hallmark's Maxine by John Wagner

It is Valentine's Day and Wild Woman is in love.
She is putting on all her pretties.
Her eyes are round and hopeful and smitten.
She has disappeared entirely into Manworld 
and no longer remembers her friends.
She is twitterpated and distracted
and all kinds of smarmy worms 
are roiling around in her innards.
This must be Love! she sighs.


Ha ha! gotcha! Mary's Mixed Bag at Toads tells us to write a Not-Love poem, about something we hate. The only thing I hate is my neck, which begins at my jawline these days and sort of sluffs its way down like a fat melted candle. I am contemplating the advantages of a burka. Or Neck Socks. But I decided to fool you instead - just lump it together with April Fools!!!!!


how do we give back for so much beauty?
sight, and laughter, and love and dreams,
rushing river,  burbling streams,
the miracle and mystery,
the beauty and the blight,
the chance to keep trying
to get it right.

give back for it all.
give thanks without ceasing.
even for the unwanted passage
that turns out to be the very portal
your soul has been seeking.

Oracle Owl calls from the forest deep:
don't go back to sleep, don't go back to sleep.

Thinking about gratitude a lot these days, and just how rich is the banquet spread before us, with all of its beauty, and so many choices. Last night I read this quote by Rabindranath Tagore, which sums it up nicely:

I slept and dreamt that life was joy.
I woke and saw that life was service.
I acted and behold, service was joy.

Wednesday, February 6, 2013



One word
after another tells
a story with no
ending until the final breath.

Listen to
the stories told.
Fill your heart with
laughter and memories to the
very last moment of your life.

Kim's cool prompt at Poets United's Verse First today is to compose an add-a-word poem, where the first line is two words, and each line has one more word added.

Tuesday, February 5, 2013


The swans are at the river today,
the gray swollen river,
under the gray sky.

"To understand a swan,
you have to learn
how to cry,"
my son once told me,
with that other-worldly look
in his eye.

The swans are at the river today,
bridging worlds of earth and sky,
so I'll spend some time, there,
watching them
glide by.

Saturday, February 2, 2013

Raven Moon


what are you saying,
when you look at me
with one eye?

Shapes shifting 
in the mist;
an owl, suddenly,
yellow eyes
like swinging lanterns -
what does it mean
when she ululates
and points
into the forest
with her
feathered wing?

A white cloud
trails across 
your black-mooned sky.
Perched atop
a fencepost,
a shaman
in ceremonial feathers
is smoking
the pipe of peace.

With his kind eyes,
he is 
looking at me,
and smiling.

Kids, Laurie set us an intriguing challenge at Real Toads on Friday in her A Word With Laurie series. (I'm late, as usual!) She wanted us to use the word phantasmagorical , which is described variously as something in a dream, having the appearance of an optical illusion, or a fantastic or deceptive appearance. I didnt use the word, but wrote to the meaning of the word.

I watched a raven fly overhead this morning, and the beginnings of this poem began. But the part about the shaman, or medicine man, actually happened to me. When I first fell ill in Tofino, the beginning of a huge change in my life, I woke one morning to see a shaman's face right in front of my eyes - he was in full ceremonial feathers, and his eyes were very kind. He was smiling at me. I took it as an assurance that I would be all right and, in fact, after a turbulent year or two, I was. As quickly as I saw him, his face faded into my waking reality. Now that I remember, it was a medicine man I knew from working among First Nations - he knew I was ill, and likely was praying for me that morning, so strongly that his face appeared before me. There are more things in heaven and earth, Horatio.........

I will also post this for the Poetry Pantry at Poets United

Everybody Dies

Wild Woman 
has been thinking about
how everybody dies,
a fact that underlies
our entire existence,
that makes us miss being alive
in advance,
even while we're
still here.

But, she says,
the good news is
                 that before we die..............
everybody lives.