This Is My Body

I refute the current cultural determinant that tells me
how I should Look to be attractive.
How on Earth can I be in my body
if I'm Looking at me from over there,
and through somebody else's eyes?

Not Looking from the outside in,
comfortable in my skin,
is how I Feel.

Comfortable and relaxed and soft and delicious.
I'm attractive to myself.
I attract My attention.
A powerful magnet that increases its momentum.

My awareness brought inside,
I am present,
To how it Feels,
To be in relationship,
With the world 
From this side,
This side of the lens,
This side of the vessel,
from This side of the bars.

But I'm not trapped
This is the Freedom side!

I Feel from the inside:
Folds of flesh,

Creases and scars
Of a life lived close-up,
Honest in its human imperfection.

A distorted tree,
Hyper-real with living wisdom,
It supports an entire forest of diversity.
Creatures thrive upon it. 


Diving for cover beneath my deepest doubts
As the absolute and final certainty,
This dreadful cloister a sole retreat
From the crushing responsibility of being;
And gripping onto old life for grim death
In hopeless bargaining for eternal safety:
Airless, meagre and unessential;
I'm suspended impossibly between
The suffocating sanctuary of prayers
And a terrible rebirth into something larger.

Women's Hearth ~ Spinning Sisters

Spinning Image                                                                                      The Call by Charlotte Santall


The Women gather, and draw close around the fire,
With rapt attention, they talk and they listen. 
They have a language all their own; a unique dialect of sighs and signs 
rarely spoken in these times, or heard by the ears of others, or in the light of the day.

They speak of life and death; of what has been lost, forsaken and dispossessed:
Kinships; ancestors; wildness and belonging to the land.
They share visions, augur destinies and dreamings and the forgotten mysteries of the Moon.

And as they share, time distorts and the earth spins more slowly on its axis,
As they sit and they talk; and they talk and they sit; seeing inward…
suspended in timeless space; held by a spiral existence...

And the potency of their sharing, the absoluteness of their passion and pain,
dignity and disgrace; their ecstasy, emptiness, sorrow and rage
are distilled between silence and laughter and longing and tender heartfelt care.

They howl and sing and bleed and weep in the truth of their being and becoming.
With fearless presence and devotion, they sift through the sea-drift of their hearts.

Armours dissolve, masks melt; knots loosen and unravel, 
As they spin a golden lace-work reality as beautiful as the lines on their faces.
It is a strange and wondrous alchemy of body wisdom and soul song...

The Women weave their sparkling rainbow essence 
into a new paradigm of archetypes and deities; ethereal and manifest...
And what was once thought to be dead is brought to life,
What lay sleeping is awoken, in themselves and in the world…

Grandmother by Charlottte Santall                                                                                Grandmother by Charlotte Santall

Medicine Walk Home

Teachings come in turning leaves,
ripening Rowan berries,
a gathering wind,
and the unquestioning motion of water.

Small way-side flowers fading;
delicate grasses gone to seed,
clouds, birds and all the creatures and songs of nature
emerge in time and tide.

No forcing, or holding back, 
or striving to be any other
than that which they already are, 

grounded and complete in their being:
Everything around me,
whatever my senses can experience,
is present in full moment and magnitude;
perfect counter-balance.

Pausing to absorb the Sun
through a kindly gap in the trees,
I am allowed to lose the edges of myself
to an unbounded moment,
where the Earth's insistent becoming

is silent and surrendered in its sovereignty.
Here is where home always was.

Heart Meditation

The ghosts & shadows
of my heart
like angry families
in crowded tenements,
lonely people
in high rise flats
who can only gaze
at the marvelous view
but have no space inside to play.

~ Earth ~

And a change comes over Earth as the stones begin to find their long-lost sound.
As more of us are still enough, for long enough to listen,
their resonance converges into a distinct and palpable rhythm,
a long low rumble, slow as lichen growing;
the stone ancestors entrust to us their ancient song of magic,
As it coils and shudders like a dragon underground,
we stir to the memory in our bones
and become sounders,
bells that echo to the knell of mysterious rites and traditions;
the deep and silent secrets that lie buried and forgotten
in the landscape of our flesh.


Gravity is the Earth wanting us, the love that calls us into existence...

Lying On The Earth by Divyam Chaya BernsteinLying on the Earth by Divyam Chaya Bernstein


The road seen, then not seen, the hillside
hiding then revealing the way you should take,
the road dropping away from you as if leaving you
to walk on thin air, then catching you, holding you up,
when you thought you would fall,
and the way forward always in the end
the way that you followed, the way that carried you
into your future, that brought you to this place,
no matter that it sometimes took your promise from you,
no matter that it had to break your heart along the way:
the sense of having walked from far inside yourself
out into the revelation, to have risked yourself
for something that seemed to stand both inside you
and far beyond you, that called you back
to the only road in the end you could follow, walking
as you did, in your rags of love and speaking in the voice
that by night became a prayer for safe arrival,
so that one day you realized that what you wanted
had already happened long ago and in the dwelling place
you had lived in before you began,
and that every step along the way, you had carried
the heart and the mind and the promise
that first set you off and drew you on and that you were
more marvelous in your simple wish to find a way
than the gilded roofs of any destination you could reach:
as if, all along, you had thought the endpoint might be a city
with golden towers, and cheering crowds,
and turning the corner at what you thought was the end
of the road, you found just a simple reflection,
and a clear revelation beneath the face looking back
and beneath it another invitation, all in one glimpse:
like a person and a place you had sought forever,
like a broad field of freedom that beckoned you beyond;
like another life, and the road still stretching on.

David Whyte

I Am Too Alone In The World

I am too alone in the world, and yet not alone enough
to make every moment holy.
I am too tiny in this world, and not tiny enough
just to lie before you like a thing,
shrewd and secretive.
I want my own will, and I want simply to be with my will,
as it goes toward action;
and in those quiet, sometimes hardly moving times,
when something is coming near,
I want to be with those who know secret things
or else alone.
I want to be a mirror for your whole body,
and I never want to be blind, or to be too old
to hold up your heavy and swaying picture.
I want to unfold.
I don’t want to stay folded anywhere,
because where I am folded, there I am a lie.
and I want my grasp of things to be
true before you. I want to describe myself
like a painting that I looked at
closely for a long time,
like a saying that I finally understood,
like the pitcher I use every day,
like the face of my mother,
like a ship
that carried me
through the wildest storm of all.”

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                      Rainer Maria Rilke

The Return

Someday, if you are lucky,
you’ll return from a thunderous journey
trailing snake scales, wing fragments
and the musk of Earth and Moon.

Eyes will examine you for signs
of damage, or change
and you, too, will wonder
if your skin shows traces

of fur, or leaves,
if thrushes have built a nest
of your hair, if Andromeda
burns from your eyes.

Do not be surprised by prickly questions
from those who barely inhabit
their own fleeting lives, who barely taste
their own possibility, who barely dream.

If your hands are empty, treasure-less,
if your toes have not grown claws,
if your obedient voice has not
become a wild cry, a howl,

you will reassure them. We warned you,
they might declare, there is nothing else,
no point, no meaning, no mystery at all,
just this frantic waiting to die.

And yet, they tremble, mute,
afraid you’ve returned without sweet
elixir for unspeakable thirst, without
a fluent dance or holy language

to teach them, without a compass
bearing to a forgotten border where
no one crosses without weeping
for the terrible beauty of galaxies

and granite and bone. They tremble,
hoping your lips hold a secret,
that the song your body now sings
will redeem them, yet they fear

your secret is dangerous, shattering,
and once it flies from your astonished
mouth, they-like you-must disintegrate
before unfolding tremulous wings.

Geneen Marie Haugen