When the cinders turn to ashes
And finally, Mother river washes
The last traces of this lingering presence
But the gentle light of true essence.
A while ago I did a photoshoot for a friend from work. She’s this amazingly creative amateur photographer who only started a good year ago. She is like this creative bomb waiting to happen, her enthusiasm is just so contagious!
My friend was playing with the idea for a horror theme, so we brainstormed for a while about location and props and in the end, this was the result. When we were all set up for the shoot at a half collapsed, overgrown entrance into the factory, dusk was already falling so we had to work fast to use the light as much as possible to our advantage.
It’s amazing what a crappy Halloween costume from the carnival store and an old abandoned stone factory at dusk did for us that day. As soon as I entered the cave with my props and long swishing skirts I felt like a succubus crawling into darkness. That day I truly embraced my inner monster. It totally kicked ass to become that wicked!
But for me, the most powerful memory I kept from the shoot was the fun we had creating just the right setting, getting into character and generally the people I was with that day.
Here is the rest of the shoot, shiver and shake!
Enough creepiness for tonight, and sweet dreams to you, dear reader.
Lost. Being utterly and completely lost is what I have felt like in 2013. I gained freedom and when I got it, I lost it again. I have strained myself for more then 3 years in order to pay of debt. My mindset was totally focused on just one thing. Pay back my debt. Pay back my debt. Pay back my debt.
So great. I payed back my debt. I spent the last 3 years of my life living in a micro-cosmos. Shit worked too. Freedom can be a total bitch sometimes if it comes and bites you in the ass when you least expect it. You see, I expected to be in debt for at least FIVE years. So I didn’t expect to get of the hook so soon. I was not at all prepared for that kind of freedom.
Wait. I never really introduced myself. I am a young woman, a true blue dreamer with a practical mindset. It’s a paradox I know. More often then not these two parts of me are in conflict with each other. When that happens I get stuck. Whenever I get stuck it feels like my inner landscape freezes over. I enter a soulful wintertime. Right now, my inner landscape is thawing. Which is why I am writing again. Writing to me is like therapy. Words can be so easy. But I digress.
Freedom. When I first realized I was debt free I was in shock. I felt like a prisoner who was suddenly released out of a dark hole and when I entered the light it hurt my eyes, I was temporarily blinded by the light of a new day. I needed time to re-adjust, orientate myself again. Look around me, see the world. Figuring out my place in it. To reclaim my place in the world.
In a lot of ways that is just what I did. I had to start over from scratch since I never had any material stuff to begin with. I never really was a material girl anyway, but at 34 I am starting to crave a home to call my own. So these days I have a nice little apartment with nice big windows and lots of plants in it,a big white ice bear- odd eyed cat called Mushi and last but not least, a big furry man in it. But I have been dating the big furry man for a while, so he isn’t new like all the rest of the furniture ^_^ Sadly, he isn’t odd eyed like Mushi. But his shy brown eyes go a long way too :)
In many ways, I still feel very much lost. At 34, I don’t feel established like lots of people my age around me probably feel. I don’t own a house, I rent an apartment. I don’t have steady job, I still work as a temp. I was pregnant this year, and a couple of weeks later, I wasn’t pregnant any more. My world opened up like a flower and then a hailstorm flew over it. Right when I started coping with the fact that I was going to become a mother I lost my baby. Right when I thought I was feeling ready to start a new life again, life started growing within me. And just like that it was gone again.
Despite all the sadness, I can’t help but feel like an optimist. There’s a saying in the I Ching: ‘Be not sad. Be like the sun at midday.’ It’s all about hexagram 55, which is commonly translated as ‘Abundance’.
If you’re interested in the I Ching, I very much recommend Hilary Barretts website: www.onlineclarity.co.uk
So 2013, yeah rollercoaster. Focused. Unexpected freedom. Shock. Euphoria. Organizing. Deciding. Release. New life. Loss. Sadness. Mourning. Re-evaluating everything. Starting something new. Hope. There is always hope.
A very dear friend of mine introduced me to the this wonderful composer, Ryuichi Sakamoto. This piece always gives me the chills, it’s perfect for wintertime.
I took this pic last autumn, it’s in a back lane close to my dads big old house. Often times when I was biking home from work I liked to hop off and just stand there watching the sun setting slow. It’s one of those combinations of places and time that to me, marks the border between our world and the next. The purple hour, if you catch my drift…
By Neil Gaiman
Touch the wooden gate in the wall you never saw before.
Say “please” before you open the latch,
walk down the path.
A red metal imp hangs from the
green-painted front door,
as a knocker,
do not touch it; it will bite your fingers.
Walk through the house. Take nothing. Eat nothing.
if any creature tells you that it hungers,
If it tells you that it is dirty,
If it cries to you that it hurts,
if you can, ease its pain.
From the back garden you will be able to see the wild wood.
The deep well you walk past leads to Winter’s realm;
there is another land at the bottom of it.
If you turn around here,
you can walk back, safely;
you will lose no face. I will think no less of you.
Once through the garden you will be in the wood.
The trees are old. Eyes peer from the undergrowth.
Beneath a twisted oak sits an old woman.
She may ask for something;
give it to her. She
will point the way to the castle. Inside it
are three princesses.
Do not trust the youngest. Walk on.
In the clearing beyond the castle the
twelve months sit about a fire, warming their feet, exchanging tales.
They may do favors for you, if you are polite.
You may pick strawberries in December’s frost.
Trust the wolves, but do not tell them
where you are going.
The river can be crossed by the ferry.
The ferryman will take you.
(The answer to his question is this:
If he hands the oar to his passenger, he
will be free to leave the boat.
Only tell him this from a safe distance.)
If an eagle gives you a feather, keep it safe.
Remember: that giants sleep too soundly; that
witches are often betrayed by their appetites;
dragons have one soft spot, somewhere, always;
hearts can be well-hidden,
and you betray them with your tongue.
Do not be jealous of your sister.
Know that diamonds and roses
are as uncomfortable when they tumble
from one’s lips as toads and frogs:
colder, too, and sharper, and they cut.
Remember your name.
Do not lose hope — what you seek will be found.
Trust ghosts. Trust those that you have
helped to help you in their turn.
Trust your heart, and trust your story.
When you come back, return the way you came.
Favors will be returned, debts will be repaid.
Do not forget your manners.
Do not look back.
Ride the wise eagle (you shall not fall).
Ride the silver fish (you will not drown).
Ride the grey wolf (hold tightly to his fur).
There is a worm at the heart of the tower;
that is why it will not stand.
When you reach the little house, the
place your journey started,
you will recognize it, although it will seem
much smaller than you remember.
Walk up the path, and through the garden
gate you never saw before but once.
And then go home. Or make a home.
Spring was springing up all around me when I was walking down the canal this may. The reflection of the water gives this picture an unearthly feeling, as if they were night blooming flowers or space blooming flowers :)
“The symbol of Goddess gives us permission. She teaches us to embrace the holiness of every natural, ordinary, sensual dying moment. Patriarchy may try to negate body and flee earth with its constant heartbeat of death, but Goddess forces us back to embrace them, to take our human life in our arms and clasp it for the divine life it is – the nice, sanitary, harmonious moment as well as the painful, dark, splintered ones.
If such a consciousness truly is set loose in the world, nothing will be the same. It will free us to be in a sacred body, on a sacred planet, in sacred communion with all of it. It will infect the universe with holiness. We will discover the Divine deep within the earth and the cells of our bodies, and we will lover her there with all our hearts and all our souls and all our minds.”
― Sue Monk Kidd, The Dance of the Dissident Daughter: A Woman’s Journey from Christian Tradition to the Sacred Feminine