Dear Refugees

We have heard
and noted your cries
for help.  Un
fortunate
ly our sovereign borders
are currently closed.

We fear that
we must turn away
from any
images
of drowning, freezing, starving.
They disturb our sleep.

But we are
not completely heart
less.  We will
send you our
Condolences, as well as
our Thoughts and Prayers.

For earthweal, where Sherry, after bringing us up to date on the flooding in her Canadian homeland, asked us to write Verse Letters: a form of address, akin to dramatic monologue, to all parties involved – letters to the lost, perhaps; to those who caused the extinction;  or to those of us who are in the middle.

Correspondences

Looking at the photo Butterfly on Asters by Lisa Smith Nelson, I’m immediately reminded of a story in Robin Wall Kimmerer’s “Braiding Sweetgrass”.  Kimmerer is asked by her college advisor why she wants to study botany.  She tells him she is hoping to learn “about why asters and goldenrod looked so beautiful together”.  Her advisor is appalled.  To him, the beauty of a field of flowers has no place in science.

I could have told her, as her artist friends later did, about complementary colors.  But I did not know, as she learned in her further studies, that the eyes of bees, like those of humans, are naturally attracted to complementary colors.  I looked up butterflies and their vision, too, is similarly color sensitive.  When asters and goldenrod grow together, they complement each other in more than color—they attract more pollinators.  Plants need pollinators to reproduce. 

The combination of purple and yellow is part of the ecosystem.

It seems that beauty is indeed a necessity for life.

which came first–
the delicate wings
or the seed?

Colleen’s Tanka Tuesday prompt this week was a photo chosen and taken by Lisa Smith Nelson, above.

Children of the Night

“Listen to them, the children of the night, what music they make.”
–Bram Stoker

There’s a dark path in the forest that reaches not only to the horizon but far up into the stars in the sky.  The contours float, infused inside and out by an endless melody that sings chaos into shimmering pattern.

Where does the story end?  Perhaps it leads to dreams that have been hidden away, to possibilities invisible in the light of day.  To once upon a time that becomes here and now.

If you listen–still, silent, boundaried by the night–it’s possible to catch a glimpse of these distant voices.  But only a child can find the entrance to this liminal landscape of matter, spirit, and sound.

wonder shines
silvered, transcendent–
opening

The Kick-About prompt this week was the quote from Dracula, above. These monoprint paintings were a response to that.

The road from Samhain to vampire costumes for Halloween travels through the pop culturization of every holiday we celebrate for commercial purposes. But that does not completely disguise its real roots in the transition from fall to winter and the crossing over that occurs between the worlds of the living and the dead.

It’s fitting that we have turned Samhain into a children’s festival–we can join in for their sake, hidden behind masks, remaining rational adults while keeping a thread tied to our ancient rites of passage.

Children are our conduit to what we are ashamed to acknowledge. They remain close to the Other Worlds–they still believe completely in magic.

For earthweal, where Sarah has asked us to think about Samhain and celebrate the places that lie between.

autumn wind

The Oracle is in a dreamy mood today. It feels very much like my dreams last night–I journeyed with some children through a series of untamed landscapes. The details are hazy, but the atmosphere lingers.

be ocean’s naked desire
born flying with fish
like no one’s fool    sailing
over night    dancing
the dazzled morning open
like a newborn eye
listening to time’s rhythm
devouring each breath

now, when

what crowns morn
ing what binds begin
ning connects
endings to
portaled timelessness what re
news continues life

if not birds
if not stars if not
dawn if not
rain wind sky
if not fertile earth turning
into trees—what then?

For earthweal, spending some time with trees. My painting is, once again, inspired by Joan Mitchell’s tree paintings which I return to again and again.

Oasis

It’s a robin, I think, as the melody enters my consciousness through the window.  But then it morphs into a litany of birds from cardinal to crow.  There may even have been a frog thrown in for good measure.

I can’t locate the bird to see who is gifting me with its repertoire of local wildlife sounds.  It could be a starling—I once lived in an apartment where the local starlings would sit on the roof railing next door every morning and tell me all they knew.  But there are also plenty of both mockingbirds and catbirds hanging around.

city fades
a sanctuary
feathered skies

A meditation on sanctuary for earthweal. Also linking to dVerse OLN, hosted by MsJadeLi.

if the circle opens, will it become a line? (#2)

The Oracle’s message today reminded me of a collage I had done awhile ago. When I found it, I stole the title as well as the image. You can read the original here.

if I can remember
the color of myself
insideout

naked    foolish    magic

will my broken breath open
and ask for the air I need
to see voices
sailing on a vast listening
of oceans surrounded
with life’s slow sacred rhythm?

As usual, the answers are elusive.

washed but not cleansed

the day lost–where did it go?  did it depart or disappear?
what summons took it away, left us hanging in empty wind?–
scattering bits of sanity like lost laundry, unflown birds

The prompt for NaPoWriMo Day 20 is to write a sijo.

The only thing I unpacked today after the movers left was the computer. I know I’m behind on reading posts, but will try to catch up in the next week.