Wednesday, June 30, 2010


Set among a rocky path

I saw a valley of nasturtiums.

My water lilies of the land.

Abundant everywhere the eye could see,

through out this dusty northern California town.

This is the land of wide-open spaces.

This is the long walks in the shade of a redwood forest.

This is the land I’d known as a soft place to fall

So many years ago.

Traveling backward toward the sun

I’ve found a familiar flower.

One that I’ve never tasted before.

I place it in my mouth and savor the peppery flavor

as the land of the orange blossom

welcomes me home

once again.

Week 23. Paths.

Nasturtiums look like such festive flowers, so bright and full of hope. I’d seen these flowers many times but I’d never eaten them. At a dinner party last week while visiting San Francisco I was given a nasturtium to taste for the first time. I was surrounded by new people and new experiences. I began to think about think about my life when I lived in San Francisco years ago, who I was then, who I am today and how different my life seems now. I often think that our lives never turn out to be what we plan. Joseph Campbell once said, “We must let go of the lives we have planned in order to live the lives we are destined”. The life we are destined may have so many unexpected turns; the flavors we taste may be sweet, sour, salty even bitter. This makes me think that being open to tasting all the flavors is the only way to know the path your destined.

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

Pixie dust dandelions

Pixie dust dandelions are on my dinning table this morning.

They are like lanterns for a fairy.

The thin stems form triangular sections in space.

A tiny kingdom perched above an old glass bottle.

They fade slowly,

and each day I see them

they become more fragile.

I want to blow them to the wind some days,

like a real dandelion.

Just hold them to my lips and let them fly off into the air.

Where they belong.

A wild weed born from the side of the sea.

But I carried them all this way,

Up the hill to the house,

and gently, I made them a home,

here, where maybe, just maybe

a tiny little fairy

could fly with ease

out into a fantastical world.

Week 23. Message in a bottle.

I still love weeds and wildflowers. I am so fascinated with wild weeds rather than pretty, rare flowers (even though Orchids was my last blog entry). I guess like with people, I feel a sort of compassion for people who have a hard road, and therefore those hardier flowers. Maybe that’s what makes me want to stop and really look at them and seek out their story.

One day while walking by the river’s edge with my 6 year old daughter, I spotted a peculiar wildflower. I pointed it out to her and we careful inspected it. We agreed that it had a fairly like demeanor. I brought a bunch home and placed them in an old bottle. Days would pass and every time I looked at them I felt time reminding me to capture them somehow, to find a way to hold on to them. I took photos but my busy schedule did not allow time for me to paint them. I kept thinking about what lesson they could send me, knowing that any flower that made it into my house could have a message. Then, finally, one morning after reading the poem I wrote about those strange weeds I saw something, as clear as day. It struck me that I wanted to hold on to those small delicate flowers. I wanted to capture them, the same way I wanted hold on to my daughter as she grows up. Maybe she is the tiny fairy that I need to let go of. Turns out she is set to go to Croatia with her dad this Thursday, for 11 days, the first time with out me on such a long trip. I think maybe my subconscious needed to blow some dandelions into the air, my small way of letting her go off into the fantastical world.

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Orchid branch

The longest leaf I’ve ever seen

belonged to an orchid most rare.

I watched the leaves tell it where to go

and the wooden stake tell it how to stand strong.

And as I looked into the terracotta pot

I noticed the dry fragmented roots

and I carefully touched them

Making sure they were secure.

As I looked at each closed blossoms,

carefully perched on the vine

I could see that there is more to learn from a branch

than how to lean.

week 22. Stability

Orchids always strike me as such elegant looking flowers. I think it’s the way they stand with such attitude, secured by the tall thin stake that gives them stability. Seeing these flowers recently made me think a bit about how we lean. How much our lives are filled with a need to give and receive support. It seems that unconditional love plays a role in this some how. I have a book called “Living your yoga” by Judith Lasater. In this book Judith Lasater talks about loving with out expectation. She says, “Love in its purest sense is not based upon what you get from the relationship but on what the relationship allows you to give. The depth of your love is not reflected in what others make you feel but in your willingness to give of yourself”. Giving of ourselves is surely and act of love in any form. Understanding the depth of this gift, in the ways we nurture others as well as the way others nurture us allows this flow of love to grow.