“Ride these monsters down…”

31 10 2012




“Halloween, a day associated with goblins and ghouls –

monsters all about.

For many the monsters are all too real –

monsters that haunt our past;

dwell in our present;

threaten our future.

They grasp our feet and ankles, desiring to pull us under…to take us down.


Maybe, though, that’s the way of it –

to dive down into what seeks to take us;

Maybe it’s the counter intuitive spirit

that sees the sliver of light in the darkness.


So, heed Annie Dillard’s words, “ride these monsters down” –

Your’s…mine…that haunt, dwell, and threaten.

Name them and jump on their backs – holding on tight.

Muster courage, gather community, give into hope,

and dive deep into fear until it no longer holds you…

until its power melts away.


Could the Truth be that the One we seek is found down –

 not always up?

Could the Truth be that the One who seeks us jumps on the monster’s back with us?


Light does shine in the darkness;


So, ride these monsters all the way down…


(Annie Dillard line from Teaching a Stone to Talk)

One Room School

28 10 2012

Little Greenbrier one room school in the Smoky Mountains


Morning mist…and other thin places

26 10 2012

Cades Cove morning mist – surely a thin place

(the Celtic Spirituality notion of a place or a moment where

the veil between this world and the Divine is thin). 

Surely these thin places are not just sequestered to the coves of mountains or to shore edges.


I wonder what thin place I will come upon today…in the ” busy-ness” of  living, relating, and walking in this world?

Gifts given…

23 10 2012

Recently I was in the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee and North Carolina. While there, a battle within came to the front: always looking for photographic moments/scenes versus just enjoying being in a setting that I love. The following are insights that came from this battle – for me it applies to so many others…I’m still in process…

The gift within taken for granted;

tunnel vision allows obsession to seep in.

Obsession becomes a non-collaborator…co-creation is ignored;

in this ignorance Creation becomes an object to be captured…possessed.

Where did I loose sight?

When did ego begin to think so grandiose of itself?

In the ego’s unhealthy rise – gift and beauty diminish;

co-creation is on the brink of extinction…

The gift within is then – a gift given…

Embracing this truth…I feel the air infused with freedom;

Scales fall from my eyes and what is all around me are gifts given –

not of my doing…

Not objects to be captured or possessed…

Only an invitation to accept and carry a whisper of thanks…

Calm before the storm…

13 10 2012


Wild and Tamed – our paradox…

9 10 2012





While on a hike, I came across this fence separating the neatly trimmed grass and the free growing, untamed grass. A line from Mary Oliver’s poem, “The Summer Day”, came to mind:

Tell me, what is it you plan to do
with your one wild and precious life?

(from New and Selected Poems, 1992)

I also noticed that the fence is bowed as if each side pushes toward and longs for the life of the other. I wonder if this is a parable of our own lives?

Cape May, NJ

6 10 2012

Just thinking of some friends on a Well for the Journey retreat in Cape May, New Jersey this weekend…

Life’s simple beauty…

2 10 2012


Life’s simple beauty – always present…


 Sheltering me – creating a womb of sacred space as I pass through worn paths underneath…

 Do I feel the warmth enveloping me?


 Gently brushing against my shoulder – loving me in spite of my self-imposed unlovable ethos…

 Am I aware of these tender strokes, pregnant with grace and Truth?


 Striking my face abruptly, when I am lost in the concerns and the busyness of my small world…

 Will my numbness blind me from what longs to be found?


 Beauty – painting space with hues only imagined – designs unique and inviting;

 “Welcome friend,” whispering evergreens speak. “Welcome to this world of beauty. A world to which you, too, belong!”


What else do I not see? What do I not hear?