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I have carelessly mislaid my heart
did I leave it with you?
I have accomplished tasks
except for a clutter of memorabilia
that I mean to turn into masks-
but I have mislaid my heart
I take pleasure in babies
having the courage to come
but I’m glad I don’t have to look after them long
my time of mothering’s done!
my friend posts a poem about his grandfather’s knife
It’s a purpose in life to hone
that which we inherit
damn these end lines without merit
I’ll go back to the start
Where have I mislaid my heart?
Presence, process and the edge
Art Process Work methods of working with trauma
Relaxed refreshed and free
How often do you hear someone say this is how they feel?
Yet, this how we could be.
That we do not live this way is the result of trauma
But really our defences are just trying to protect us!
We get anxious at the edge of the known.
If we learn to love our edges
welcome them, include them with radical
whole hearted acceptance of what is
Step into Loving presence and everything changes
We are now
Relaxed refreshed and free
I dip my ankles in the cool stream
I’m a young woman
with brown hair held in a net
with pearls at every crossing
I lift my dress a little
enjoy the breeze
My attendants are discretely waiting
Who am I ?
Are these my lands that I dare venture here?
Or am I so high
that men would fear to lay a hand on me?
Its clear I’m thoughtful
something weighs on me.
Is it affairs of state that have settled on my shoulders?
Am I pondering
a choice I must soon make?
From under their leaves
primroses are coming out...
Who are you, you horrible old hags?
screeching around, dropping heavy, scratchy
old wet blankets on me!
AND silky bolts of silver cloth AND wet sheets worn with washing
I thought it was just black blankets you were dropping
you old Cover Smother Mothers
but I see it’s all the bolts of cloth from all the clothes
I didn’t make...
Go make your tea!
I’ll never entertain you!
I am adamant.
You are shrieking harridans
a flock of almond wrecking parrots
who‘d strip a tree in minutes.
But You Blessed US!
Now we’re here to STAY
She casts aside the net of pearls
of wisdom sorrow joy
She bathes her feet
in the bubbling spring
whose source is Lethe as she knows
She picks up the pebble from the danceroom floor
and lets the dark dissolve within
She becomes the Minotaur.
Now she sews
her brothers’ shirts from nettles, centuries of pain
of rage and shame
are seen as beauty, stitch by loving stitch
those who do not know her
think she is a witch..
She’s freed the wounded male!
Listen to her sing!
Pearls tumble from the heavens
and form a single string.
My hidden question/ is about the plum stone/ I plant/ at the edge of the wild land-/ It is a question about my whole sentient life! / I will mix it up and err/ I will never be prey to age and numbness/ I will dance like a kid, scarves flying/ Never mind bogs, I have gum boots! / I was once jolted awake/ by an adder at my feet/ on the edge of the wild land/ last night/ as I put out the rubbish/ leaves drifting around the bin/ I wondered is there danger?/ The answer is YES!/ I will mix it up I will err/ I will stab through until there are diamonds/ I will fix the ozone/ you and I and the kids who love trees/ we will dance, scarves flying/ as the plum grows and blossoms/ Before I am taxied, even as I am taxied/ to lie under yews/ like a kid I will plumb/ all I know/ I will err I will mix it all up/ and know I have given, I will know I have won/ my whole sentient life/ a harvest of plums.
Brother one comes home
with his wife and daughters
when his father is dying.
He says to the youngest
who has tended the land
loved, laboured and cared for their parents
All this is mine. I do not care where you go.
Brother two also comes home
He leaves his life and his ex wife
whom he did not divorce.
He makes love to his elder brothers wife!
Surely a receipe for rage,
disgrace to the family name
The youngest sees but cannot speak
He does not want to be accused of lying.
Who is most to blame?
Wind chimes and bird song
sunlight moving in trees
a rabbit enquires as to what may be edible
should it come closer
a dove is resting, very close, its head almost invisible
All is as it should be:
A friend posts a picture of Auswitz
the day her father was taken there;
an enquiry finds the man who murdered his children
and then himself, had had seven partners
each one, including the mother, reporting DV
how did he get a gun?
Two cyclones are stalking each other just off the coast
like two superpowers
each trying to gain territory;
soon high winds may batter our peace
soon our small objects of comfort
our tokens of friendship
may be blasted out to sea.
Better take the moment
and notice the dove
dappled in sunlight
at rest in my tree.
It is no small thing to love
to be loyal
to keep promises
to apologise when you cannot
to take joy in simple things
the flash of a blue jays wing-
Why do we tremble
In loves presence?
Why not sink into the deep embrace
that says we are known, welcomed, at one?
In this moment
and always because
that always is folded into
one with all promises fluttering
like little sighs.
Why not exult in the laughter
as it echoes
into all the little crevices of wariness
with a shout
Yes to love
and loyalty, Yes
A little boy pulls a deep red rose
between his teeth
and over his face
to tease me; he is just awake
his merry eyes shine in his father’s arms
Here I am
Here I am not!
It is spring, the season
of deep red roses
where you live
in the mountains across the world.
He asks me to whom I send pictures
I say it is my friend
If anything should happen to me, my son
You must turn to her because she is my friend
Good idea, I say
sending back a picture of my newest, autumnal rose
I’m letting warm water
steal up around me
fragrant with peppermint
an everyday luxury
to bathe and wash my hair
working or even walking to the sea.
Yes my washing is outside drying
roses are coming out again
I must pay some bills
do some dishes
wash the floor
and do more to unpack
It is past time
to wash it, shake it away
have everything fresh.
Why does my consciousness roam
so far from my home?
I embrace those so far away
holding them, letting them touch my awareness
gently after a night full of travels
when flesh burns it weeps
the blackened skin flakes
and peels, everything is raw
there is nothing but excruciating pain
whose enemies lob burning missiles
know their men have gone
desperately they hide their children
but they are butchered
with the old and frail and mad
they are raped then murdered
their charred bodies left in heaps
between the stones
when war is invisible
leaving the body is not expected
though murder does occur
we endure though we are raw
the blackened skin peels and flakes-
why do we ignore this suffering
rage or rub in salt?
surely, it is not my fault?
Why did you tell me/ you and an old friend who has just returned/ walked past my house but did not think to call/ to find if I was home?/ Were you hoping I would say/ I would have loved to see you/ or you should have just come by?/ Were you waiting for an invitation/ while telling me/ you are not, have never been/ and will not ever be my friend?/ Just as well you you did not call!/ Just as well you will not call-/ My home is my refuge/ I will never be at home to you.
I am not interested in a meeting of cucumber sandwich ladies offering trays of refreshment whilst being calmly solicitous, gentele and sweet! Pretty and blonde at 14 I did just this dressed to be an adjunct to parental hosts, helping people mingle while they weighed up just whom it might be most advantageous to meet. The role of a cucumber sandwich lady is to ensure encounters that are not fractious between people who fundamentally do not agree who perhaps do not like each other but must make the best of it for some transactional purpose. What is living in the heart is not revealed for this would be quite indiscreet. Oh its a useful role but that is all- never, never, will I lay my secrets at your feet!
How ridiculous to think I am not present
when I am not in the room with you.
Of course I am present!
Love does not alter when it alteration finds
nor bends with the remover to remove.
I may not be aware of every detail
of every hope and incident and ache
unless you choose to tell me
but I am present. I hold you always in my mind
and in my heart.
If you cannot receive this
I will keep my everyday self
sheltered from the bitter winds.
I will close the door.
Yet my spirit shines within.
“I wouldn’t turn to you
I have other friends“
What do you think you have been doing
for the last ten years?
I asked for presence in exhaustion.
Each of you offered this, but did not act
even with a five minute call, preferring five months silence.
Love was conditional, it seems
on behaving in particular ways and only once a month
which is perhaps, not love at all.
If nothing exists outside the circle
Ipso facto the circle itself does not exist
for its very being Is a spiritual breathing
made of loving presence, deep feeling
an interweaving, a holding of each other’s dreams
This cannot be confined
to a few hours
a month with some absences
and those nurturing, intimate and festive weekends.
It pervades everything.
I will hear hurt or rage or sorrow just as much as joy
I may be criticised but I will not be pathologied.
Don’t shoot the messenger!
I have been a catalyst for deepening.
We haven’t found our way
because an exploration of who we could be
is, it seems, not wanted by us all.
the bowl of ashes
is quite small
i have written all my memories of you
your anguish, uncertainty and fear
your anxiety and resentment
your hope, your joy
your striving, your resentment
your love of beauty
and a refinement
that is different from mine.
All of it, each memory
of your glorious beauty
now fading and more delicate
that in time will become transcendent
all of this I have seen and loved
I have burned my memories to ashes
They drifted in the light breeze
the lovely grey bowl you gave me
I thought I was meeting in a circle of friends who set aside time every month to share the dreams, the puzzles , the heartaches and the joys of our lives to give each other deep witnessing, comfort, insight, support and afternoon tea!. It seems I was mistaken. I did not sign up for a therapy group or a book club. I held each of you in the deep places of my heart. I hold clients there too but they pay me it is not reciprocal. I hold family there too, and sometimes that is reciprocal in terms of insight and sometimes it is not, but the love is there, and even if it were not or is not, I am faithful.
I feel co opted into what you call a "conscious ending!" If you do not want to be part of this group, resign! It may be that you want to end with so much still unprocessed because then you will not have to face up to the fact that you have not offered your full presence, but have used the group for personal support while keeping a professional distance. That might explain why I have sometimes felt distanced by you and been irritated by otherwise helpful insights! I could have addressed this but it wasn't quite conscious. You have never held me eyes, full of tears. Your hugs do not stream with warmth. You have thrown 10 years of my offered friendship in my face "I would not turn to you."
then dismay and anger
then more anger, shame at the failure
of my belief
then the tides of grief-
Betrayal is not a simple thing.
I will not paper it over with grace
generosity or niceness any more-
Nor let hatred through my door.
I breathe, I stand in the heart of Love surrendered.
Now, as I face the consequences
of your fear, my fear
I want to judge
You said, you did, you didn’t, how could you?
but you did.
I stand in the heart of Love and I surrender
No position, no possession here
the dozens of Monarch butterflies
gathering on a bush
supping the last nectar
from a pink bottlebrush.
We are so cruel to each other
There is so much rape and murder,
hatred, exploitation, indifference and distain
it is a miracle we are here at all.
We need a gathering of Monarchs
I don’t mean ever-faithful Queen Elizabeth
In black, at her husband’s funeral.
No, it is time for renewal.
It is we who are Monarchs
It is we who have Sovereignty
and must gather with others.
These may be the autumn days
of our life on earth.
My young friend born in a civil war
gives me a list of the peoples
the nations, the religions, he will never trust.
I say I grew up in a country
which has layers of grief
conflict and despair
from successive colonisations
soaked into the soil
but is also a quiet and productive place.
My childhood in the green suburbs
was peaceful and fertile
providing us with home grown vegetables
play space, flowers and fruit
and an education that surveyed the world.
I welcome people, I trust
unless my trust is betrayed.
Such is the privilege of a dearly bought peace.
The Sun, Venus, Mercury and Uranus
have all moved across my Descendant
and are meeting up in Taurus
within one degree of
where Jupiter was at my birth
The moon today is still in focused Virgo.
It ought to be possible to get things done
but my heart is heavy? Why?
This ought to be a moment, of triumph
of love, dramatic change
but I feel like slamming the door.
I have forgotten the butter once again!
Soon the moon will be full
In Scorpio, Buddha’s birthday so they say
I will await that better day.
your Mac will sleep/tiresome/ your internet is in a blackspot/very tiresome/ unless there is power? one I cannot plug into/ your phone is out of data/not again/ I cannot watch political commentary from America/so? or sort out just why the Queensland government has closed the border/ again/ when one person here caught Covid./ AAHHH very very tiresome!SAD! We will do some Facetime.../ They are growing so fast/ I am missing all the little moments/ growing taller more inward and thoughtful/ more aware of adult thinking/ the little one I have not yet even held!/
There are five lilac bushes
outside the cottage
quite close to a road that is not busy
My children live in a larger house
across the road
I like the house immediately
it has a large kitchen
with a window looking out onto a back garden
framing trees in the distance
It seems my friend has died
without me being told
imagine how much energy she will have now, I say
without being ill
Lying by the sink there is a posey
of translucent five petalled, blue flowers
I put it in a glass of water
I turn to my love
let it be simple I say
We shall be happy here
ka pouri te ngakau/ ko tuku ngakau ate tonuki ki te hohatu/ my heart is broken/ my heart is like a stone/ ka pouri te ngakau/ mamae kahu ngakau/ my heart is broken/ my heart longs for home/ te makariri/ makariri ahau/ its cold/ its cold today/ kua tinihanga koe ki a matou/ ka pouri te ngakau/ mame kahu ngakau/ you betray us/ my heart is broken/ my heart longs for home/ arohanui e hoa wahine/ love to you my friend/ arohanui/ love to you/ te aroha, te whakapono, te rangimarie/ love, skilfullness, peace/ toku ngakau ko tu ngakau/ your heart is in my heart/ i roto toku ngaku tonu/ always in our heart/ e nohoma/ my heart is at rest/ te rangimarie/ tatou tatou e/ peace/ to us all/
get up! there is a chorus/ louder, louder! of frogs/ and crickets/ the sun is setting behind the palm trees, and/ not yet visible/ the full moon is rising/ I know it is. Walk a little/ look now!/ through the old tangled branches/ it's as large as a china dinner plate/ held close in mystery/ asserting a just so presence./ I see her clear the trees, light the clouds/ shine with steadfast brilliance/ my neighbour passes with her fishing rod and pail/ yes, beautiful!/ I send some moments caught as photos/ and now I see her through my granddaughter's window/
The English language/ is of the senses not the heart/ perhaps that's what keeps us far apart/ When you say your friendship is conditional/ you are not speaking from an open heart/ It is in this that you betray us/ and I cannot answer except with tears/ how should I know/ what closes up your heart?/ keeps us apart-/ anger, hatred,/ indifference, judgement, fears.../ I just know that there are tears/ flowing through my heart./ ////////////////////////////////// I bear your pain just the same/ toku ngatau ko tou ngakau/ your heart is in my heart/ arohanui e hoa wahine, arohanui/ i roto toku ngakau tonu/ love to you, love surrounding you my friend/ your heart is flowing through my heart.
I like this group/ even if I have to wake at 3am and wreck the day/ its good to be with friends/ who know tran-spersonal planets(beings really)/ help us recapitulate / our human evolution!/ Good to be with those/ who are part of the solution/ part of the quiet revolution./ How incredible the leap/ what love and courage each one brings/ in the face of terror/ as we decide to incarnate/ hoping the body that we get, will be OK/ good enough to be transfigured/ by work and love for all we meet./ We come hoping we may recognise each other/ in passersby, in children, friends and lovers/ Maybe even open up this time to ALL beings../ Maybe open up our hearing, seeing/ Sometimes I am weeping/ My heart is heavy like a stone/ I cannot do so much alone/ I am longing for our home/ Then I recall my home is here/ My task is to dissolve the fear/ to see beauty everywhere/ to open up my hearing tasting singing being/ to bring light to every meeting/ even the simplest morning greeting/ Be part of the solution/ part of the quiet revolution/ I send my warmth across the world/ only the Aussies are not sleeping!/ Thank you for your teaching/ and your companionship today/ Nothing else to say, but I see you being/ part of the solution/ part of the quiet revolution./
Your heart flows through my heart, unalterably part of the same river of souls. This river is broad and strong but warm and gentle as it bears us along. You may chose to eddy out of sight but you are still part of the broad river of our belonging and as I sing you are singing because my heart flows through yours. The Waimakariri tumbles from icy mountains across plains to the sea where it is broad and braided. In summer it is possible to walk ankle deep in places, through icy cold water onto sun warmed grey stones. This water is pure but always cold. Human beings need to cup this water in their hands to warm it before drinking or boil it for tea. The river song has a lighter, cooler note and a thrumming bass.It also flows through my heart joining the river of souls.
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