Thursday, February 25, 2010


There are memories I had conveniently forgotten about which now resurface. There are things I never thought I’d want to write about or even touch—just seemed pointless. Now it doesn’t matter who’s listening as long as someone is. Otherwise, what are these moments we experience for? Where do they go? How do they move? I’m interested in the movement of memories, how they make their way to the present only to bring or impart awareness and understanding about our past.

I thought of Paul this morning. I met him during my fourth year of University when I was contemplating which field placement to choose for my last year of study before graduation. He worked as a counselor in a downtown hospital in the Psychiatric Ward. I thought it would be a good and challenging experience to be a part of his team, to be his student and he, my field instructor.

It was a beautiful Friday afternoon in July when I went to the hospital for my interview. Paul was a jolly fellow, very kind, friendly, and caring. He was accompanied by his superior. The three of us sat together in his office, they in front of me, their backs to a single window in the room, and discussed some of the things I could expect by going on board with them. There are things we remember vividly and other experiences we don’t, that just seem to occur without our awareness. That’s why there are only a handful of nows that we remember as though they happened yesterday while others, when we weren’t fully present, can just slip as though they never occurred.

I should have been happy that day in my frame and eager to accept this placement. I say should because it was the perfect day in so many ways. The water near the Harbourfront was a spectacular sight against the pop blue of the sky. The sun was bright and strong beaming its light through the spaces between the leaves of the trees. And yet, while I glanced out the window during pauses in conversation, I couldn’t get this chill or a feeling of dampness to leave me. I could see and sense things in a way I couldn’t the day before. The air felt heavy yet very thin and transparent, clear, vivid, and moist. I remember thinking that Paul had a very round face and a sincere smile. I felt cold and just couldn’t find a way to get warm in my chair. I couldn't wait to leave. I couldn't wait to get outside. I couldn't wait for night. The white of the hospital, the scattered energy in the air, the unsettling feelings I was experiencing were telling me to decline the offer.

I told Paul I would think about it and let him know by mid August of my decision which I did over a phone message. I had decided I would skip a year and do my placement in 1998, unsure of where that would be. In February of 1997, I made my way to the faculty department to go over some options when the head coordinator for placing students asked me if my name was Grace. I was probably the only one left of my class to choose a placement…

Well what she said next really stopped me in my tracks.

You’re the student who turned down the placement with Paul, right? I guess you didn’t hear what happened to him in December?
He was found murdered……in a dumpster……by the hospital……cut into pieces……and decapitated……

I add these pauses because that’s how I heard what was said. Words either move up and stay there or they move down and linger. I had a pocket of feelings settling in the middle of my body. I was having a hard time conceptualizing the murdered part before the other words trailed along. I remember feeling that same chill I experienced that day in Paul’s office the moment she uttered those words to me.

I only share this because I felt something that July afternoon that I could have easily dismissed as being meaningless or unimportant. I mean I'm talking about a few moments of an hour of my life that took place fourteen years ago! And so what, right? Maybe it’s all a coincidence. But does it really matter whether it is or it isn’t? What good did it do him for me to have had those feelings? I can’t be so arrogant to think I was being spared a difficult situation had I worked with him for four months before he passed. Why wasn’t the second student spared? Why her and not me? Why no answers? Why are there never any answers we can understand? Listening to the voice, to my intuition is great but what good does it do if it only helps me? Why can’t it transcend and serve others? Because I tell you, it’s senseless, tragic, and sad if we make it all about ourselves.

Monday, February 22, 2010

Wind and Waves

I came up with the story below late last night. Actually, images and words came flooding in and wouldn't let me sleep until three a.m., until I got the story straight and right. I'm relieved it's out of me, over and done with. Right...if only life were that easy. But, at least, I'm having fun.

I open the iron doors to a castle that belongs to my forefathers. I set down my shield, remove my helmet and armor. I’m wearing an emerald green dress that hangs a few inches above my knees. My skin is as white as snow and my hair as black as night. Like outside, I feel cold in here; nothing but stone walls envelop the interior of this place. A storm is coming and not one produced by Nature.

As I walk along, I can hear faint celtic music echoing through the hall from a nearby village buried somewhere deep in the forest. It must be loud to penetrate these walls. Room after room, I find no one. The bedroom to the right of these majestic stairs, where I will surrender this night, hasn’t been slept in for what seems like days, maybe even weeks. There is a cup filled with water that sits on a table underneath the window. I’m so thirsty but I dare not drink from it…not from this cup.

I remove my clothes and set my dress to the right of the bed on a wooden chair that looks like a throne passed down from generations. I’m aware of a few scars on my body especially the one that extends from just below my rib cage down to my right hip. I also notice the nick above my left shoulder. I'm filthy from my travels, from the merciless wind whipping against my skin like tiny razors, from the galloping of sand and dust in my hair and eyes. I'm surprised there's warm water in these vessels because I can't take another drop, another inch of winter. When I'm done washing away the memory and stain of this day, I turn the sheets over and find shelter underneath. I’m a fighter, a warrior and fazed by nothing. My eyes wash over the ceiling down along the walls across the foot of my bed and over to the window. The moonlight shines bright, the stars sparkle across the midnight skies.

A vision flashes before me, a light, a warmth. His head is buried deep in my neck, his right arm outstretched across my chest. My left shoulder and arm are cradled tightly in his hand. I’m somewhat detached. I’m caught off guard. He’s every man and then, maybe…no. I know him but I can’t make out his face, can’t quite place him like a long lost dream tucked away in some dark corner of the earth. And just like that, the image dissipates. I suddenly notice my sword is lying next to me. It’s always been next to me, ever since I can remember. I may be in a fortress but one can never be too safe. I roll over to my right side with head resting in hand and walk my left fingers along the edge of the sword all the way to its tip. I feel a slight sting due to my carelessness but a drop of blood adds some splash to an otherwise dull room. It’s been nothing but blues and grays for days…

I assume my position once again, my head resting on the pillows, right hand over heart and the other over belly. A deep sleep comes over me and I’m consumed by dream. I hear a voice, the sweetest voice to ever reach my ears. And the dialogue begins.

You mustn’t use the sword at the expense of your heart.

It’s my shield, my protector, my way through this world.

Why you insist on burying one of your most beautiful and cherished qualities is mind boggling.

Well, that’s easy for you to say, isn’t it? You were all heart.

And fire.
I thought you liked identifying with the Princess of Cups. She’s gracious and generous, loving and giving.

So what? What good does it do to bare my heart like that? To dwell in Romance? To be a helper? What is so noble about that? I mean, really? I’m what Nick Cave refers to as those people scribbled in the margins of a story that's patently absurd. I belong nowhere.

To love, ultimately, is for the benefit of others, not for yourself.
I know you’ve been wounded and bruised but I assure you, and I know that you understand, to love is its own reward.
You make attempts to repress that which you feel, which is all encompassing, isn't it? And larger than yourself, no? Your feelings are reflective of every colour in the Universe and beyond and yet, yet you fail to see how that sword leads you right back to your heart, to that overflowing cup. In fact, it's your heart that has power over that sword and not the other way around.

Why can I not keep this sword?

You don’t have to part with it. But use it for its rightful purpose.
You reach for it when you sense your heart needs protection but I tell you, it's a waste of precious time. Your heart needs no metal, no steel. Your shelter lies in your capacity to love.
That sword is a tool you must use to cut and clear away the density of the mind, of your mind. Then you’ll be able to see truth from illusion. You can manifest all that you want but you must first decide what warrants wanting, fighting for or surrendering to. Your sword carries great power and strength but it must be used correctly.

I’m lost in nothing but wind and waves. Throw me some flames, some earth.

Take up the sword and do it yourself.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

A Letter to Rocky Dennis

Dear Rocky,

Do you remember that first letter I wrote to you when I was twelve? Do you recall how I mysteriously lost it and was so upset with myself? I still have no idea where it went to. I think of you every so often and yesterday at 2:55a.m was one of those times. I’ve been staying up late these past nights listening to music. I just don’t feel the need to sleep and the music keeps me focused and dreamy. Oh, the places I’ve been to when I’m half awake and half asleep…I feel so blessed. It’s very unlike me to stay awake at night and still feel energized in the morning after only four to five hours of what’s otherwise known as this little death.

When I wrote to you back in the day, I reached out to you like a younger sister to her older brother. I imagined us in a playground in the park getting sand in our hair and clothes. I was only five when you died on October 4, 1978. Today I write to you like an older sister would to a younger brother. Time has a way of doing that. You are eternally seventeen…

I think of that telling poem you wrote and often recite it to myself.

These things are good: ice cream and cake, a ride on a harley, seeing monkeys in the trees, the rain on my tongue, and the sun shining on my face. These things are a drag: dust in my hair, holes in my shoes, no money in my pocket, and the sun shining on my face.

I’m sorry that some kids can be cruel. I’m sorry that some people know not what they do. I’m sorry you had to carry such a heavy burden. I’m sorry that you had to die so young. If you had been my brother and anyone tried to mess with you, I swear, I would have killed them with a stroke of my pen. But you were loved Rocky. I like the light in your eyes, that smile on your face, your perseverance, your strength. You were a good kid with a solid heart and a strong will.

So, why last night? Why now do you choose to enter my mind? Do you want to tell me something? Huh? If you want Rock, you can visit me in a dream and smile your smile. Maybe, just maybe, I'll even let you speak to me. But I can't make any promises. And no matter what anyone says, you were a beautiful young man with a spirit so bright, one could feel your light from miles away. Just like now. I like how you transcend time and space.

May you rest in peace forever.


Wednesday, February 17, 2010

The Princess of Cups

Things are getting stranger. My feelings are strange. It’s all so surreal right now. I’ve been contemplating and struggling lately, internally. I picked up my Tarot deck—Aleister Crowley’s Thoth Tarot—before heading out to see my parents yesterday night. I’ve owned this deck for six plus years and was never fully drawn to it because of stories I’d heard of Mr. Crowley and because I knew there was real power and precision to the stories revealed by the pulling of cards as they related to one's life. Ever since my first blog of this year, I’ve been gravitating towards this deck. Any apprehension I once had is a thing of the past. I’m ready.

I stood by the kitchen counter with my coat on and felt I needed to pull three cards before heading out. In front of me lay a book about Gurdjieff, his face taking up most of the cover, his eyes staring right through me. I shuffled the cards thinking of Crowley and asked the universe to give me some insight about my current situation. As I lay down the cards, I was aware of Gurdjieff, my Jesus key chain on top of the book and Crowley in my head. I pulled the Six of Swords (Science), the Princess of Cups and the Ace of Disks. I took Lon Milo Duquette’s Understanding Aleister Crowley’s Thoth Tarot book with me and was excited about reading each of their descriptions while riding the bus.

I had pulled the Science card in the past as well as the Princess of Cups and even the Ace of Disks but this arrangement, this reading spoke to me directly. Perhaps, I’m paying more attention or am seeing the world through new eyes. I recall flipping the pages to find the Princess of Cups and being blown away when I read the description. Being the middle card, she represents the present. Everything I’ve learned of her is a reflection of the things I’ve been feeling and thinking and exploring.

She’s known as the Lover. She is a giver who holds a chalice in her hand that represents her heart which she is very protective of. Her heart fills the world. She lives in the realm of Romance and Emotion, but she’s able to manifest her dreams into reality because she’s earth of water. Now, this part is key. She’s not just a daydreamer. She’s able to intuit the world as it is and will things into being. She represents psychic abilities or heightened perception and may also reflect creativity in the way of writing, music and art. That’s me. Princesses are messengers and in this case, she may bring a new relationship, the birth of a child, or a new love.

I took her with me to work this morning and placed her on my desk to my right glancing over every now and then taking in the greens and blues of the card. I could have fallen asleep just staring at her. She keeps surprising me because while surfing the net and wanting to feed my curiosity, I came across a blog by a woman from Peru who devoted an entire page to the Princess of Cups. I could have cried reading it because it was deeply heartfelt--the way she described her sentiments and the pain she experienced, internally and in silence. She spoke of two paths and two loves and feeling the pressure of having to choose between one or the other and then coming to the realization that by choosing one, she was not only neglecting the other (which brought her more pain) but in doing so, was also denying aspects of herself. I thought that was brilliant, eye opening, freeing. She spoke of this kind of duality and how she feels she's risen above it but after much struggle. She realizes she can bring love to both differently without any guilt and that rules or morality, especially for a woman, can be a form of imprisonment if it denies her the capacity to love. Beautiful. And she got all this from pulling the Princess of Cups...

I'm still trying to piece things together for myself so I can't really offer that much in the way of insight but I think I'm getting close to understanding her role in my life at this time. Some parts are obvious, others a little obscure but as with all things, life unfolds and its messages revealed in due course, when we're ready, present and receptive.

Monday, February 15, 2010

The realm of the unsaid

King Crimson's Starless has an opening melody that is unlike any other. What am I to do with a melody like that? What did Fripp have in mind? There's only two places one can go--the far past or the immediate present but never the future--the past consisting of unrealized dreams and the present, the awareness of what your life is really like. You've got to be still for that violin, that crying violin that just won't let up.

Muse's first album Showbiz was an oversight on my part. I can't believe what this album does to me. Bellamy was only 19 or 20 when he wrote the songs... Fillip is my favourite next to Unintended. The music shoots me out into space across the galaxies and then carries me on a wave back to earth over mountains and oceans, castles and forests and then out again to Mars and Venus, Saturn and Neptune... If it wasn't for music, I don't know how I'd survive, how any of us could. With Muse, I'm always walking out into some kind of torrential downpour and I don't mind it, not for one second because I always find the light and more. But truth be told, I'll take rain over sunshine anytime--to discover myself. Like I said, I lean towards the highly Romantic where Byron and Shelley roam.

Since writing my blogs and trying to be honest and truthful, I feel like I've been experiencing my life in a different way. It's like I can't hide from those things I once brushed off as unimportant or pointless. I can't run away anymore, as it were. I'm fascinated with the written word versus the spoken word. I'm fascinated by those things we don't say yet are able to hear when we speak with one another. I like how the written word can give a voice to unspoken thoughts, how it can be subtle and yet direct and profound. I like losing myself in the poetry of the piece.

I wonder what came first, the spoken word or the written word. It's hard to maintain a certain level of awareness in my daily life except when I reside here. I take refuge in music and expression in the form of writing. I think I'm also ready to pick up those pastels and coloured chalk I've neglected for way too long now. I miss the feel of the chalk between my index and middle finger. I miss getting lost in the human form and emotion.

Sometimes I wonder what all of this is for. I wonder how I'm going to be able to channel all of this energy. I don't know how to contain it. I'm so in love with this process, I'm actually afraid of it, of what it will show me, what it will tell me...about me. It's like when you fall head over heels for someone, you know, the one you didn't see coming, the unexpected one who makes you question just when you thought you had it all figured out. You want to know everything about them, what they taste like, what their fears are, what they dream of. And you want them to want you but you're afraid of what that could mean. What if Mr.Inspiration decides to leave? What if Mr.Magic no longer finds me worthy? What if Mr.Synchronicity gets bored?

What if all I'm left with is Mr.Guilt & Shame Inc.? What if Mr.Regret lingers and hovers like a bad omen? What if it's nothing but me and Mr.Disappointment? I can't have any of that. I refuse. There are always two paths in front of me. I stand between both. Path A is the comfortable path, the safe route, the one I've come to know, the one I'm supposed to greet with a smile and a warm hug. It's the path filled with all the usual and similar emotions we humans experience that often times takes away from the great and hides us from the truth. It's predictable, painfully predictable. You know how it goes--grow up, find a good job, marry, live in a big house and have some kids but never question anything. Questioning is the mirror that wakes us up to our potential. I can't tell you how many times I've cringed at this sort of nonchalant unfolding of events. Path B gives me a taste, a glimpse of something else, something more, where I see myself as I always intended myself to be but I don't know how to make it last, I don't know how to keep it present. It's full of wonder and magic, passion and beauty, darkness and depth.

When you're looking for that something, the universe answers back in a way you're able to understand. It always does. Always. I know it may seem that I am unhappy with my current lot and to some extent I have to be in order to propel me forward. One must be unsatisfied, otherwise there's no desire. I'm all about passion. For better or for worse, there's got to be passion. You don't know how many times I've wanted the answers, how I wish someone would just tell me what to do. It's not easy for us Geminis. We always have two choices but we can never seem to make a decision and when we do, it's often the wrong one. Sometimes wrong decisions are necessary to help us see what the right ones are.

I think there's a third path. It's the one that becomes apparent to you when you're not choosing between Path A or Path B, when you relinquish all control. It involves a complete surrendering. You don't know what's going to happen, how things will transpire but you trust all will be well. The blessings come in the form of revelations, situations, events, and people. An other is always involved in the transformation. Something about their light attracts your own. They more than help to change the course of your life. They change everything. Everything.

I don't know how I come up with this stuff. I really don't. I don't. Sometimes as I'm writing, I feel like the universe finds a clear opening to move through me. And then all of this is a result. I feel like a rag doll, moving from this place to that. And I'm supposed to be accepting of that? Yes, in many ways, I don't have a choice. I asked for this. Sometimes you have to be careful what you ask for because you may not be ready for what comes, especially if it's filled with intensity and heart, the kind you've been searching for your whole life.

Friday, February 12, 2010


I’ve wanted to talk about this for a long while, ever since the image of myself with a sword…It’s very embarrassing but since I like to play around with vulnerability, I’m just going to have to take the plunge. Anyhow, this is my blog and truth be told and as someone recently pointed out to me, I wouldn’t share this kind of stuff if I didn’t want or feel the need to.

There’s a line before me that I don’t cross. I’ve never crossed it. It has way too much power over me. Call it tradition, social restriction, convention, it doesn't matter--it enjoys looming over me. It keeps me in my place. I’ve been staring at this line and what it represents for a couple of months now asking myself what the fear is really all about. There’s always a fear involved, one that taunts me and the good news is that I let it, I allow it which means I have the power to affect change. Fear, worry, and anger are emotions I must do away with. They have never served me well or at least, not to the extent I would have liked them to. And since I am evolving to become master of my own life and emotions, I’ve decided to keep these little three devils in check.

Being free involves all levels of being. Vulnerability is my doorway to freedom. I don’t know how I came to that realization except that it makes sense to me. This vulnerability is unlike the one associated with succumbing to manipulation or persuasion or being in a position where one feels susceptible to physical or emotional attack. This kind of vulnerability I speak of actually creates an inner strength because our guard is down. It involves a complete surrendering to a now, to a moment, with the complete awareness that all will be fine and just. I can feel a kind of stirring, a deep sense of rejoicing as well as an uneasiness, a discomfort.

Recently, I received an email from a woman named Holly. I had written to her a little while ago thanking her for being an inspiration to me. She's a red head model from England who's hired by many photographers seeking to show the relationship between the human figure in Nature. I first came across her work in a website dedicated to everything pre-Raphaelite. Ivory, Holly's model name, inspires me to play around with images and feelings. You can tell she's a pro because even in her nakedness she's able to merge with her physical surroundings and still be apart from it creating an array of magical photographs. I wonder how she overcame her fear of being naked or whether she ever had the fear to begin with.

It’s one thing to dress up in medieval or pre-Raphaelite costume but it’s an entirely different thing to pose nude in Nature, by some majestic tree, stream or rock. I imagine myself feeling very small and insignificant in the presence of greens and earth. However, there is also a great power, I intuit, cultivated from within. The process is sensual and downright scary but it’s the closest thing I’ll get to feeling rooted in the earth and to being connected to something larger than myself so that all of these things become an extension of myself and I an extension of them.

Out there in the cold, the poets, every ruin, rock and leaf become alive and organic, and I want to be immersed in that, with all of my perfect imperfections. If only I could have the pictures taken without anybody behind the camera!! I can't help but feel exposed and transparent and yet I understand these create the necessary backdrop to self-discovery which is precisely why I am compelled to do this. This feeling of vulnerability is so unusual and carries much more power than the actual fear of subjecting my self like that. Each one of my insecurities comes to the forefront. It's designed to work this way. And who takes the pictures? Someone I know? Someone I don’t know? Does it matter, really? No and yes. I gather it needs to be someone I would feel self-conscious around, and not someone I'm completely comfortable with. That would be easier but this is meant to be difficult. It will hold more value for me.

This is crazy. I must stop writing. My cup is overflowing…

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Conversations with the Page of Wands

What do you want?
You summoned me.

What do I need to know?
Would you like me to tell you what you already know?

What would the point in that be?

So this is going to be nothing but riddles, huh?
This will be whatever you want it to be.

I don't know what I want.
Oh, but you do.
I bring good news which is exactly what you need.

I'm trying to understand who or what you represent in my life. I sense my life will never be the same now that you've entered it.
You must choose.

Accept or decline.

Now, that would be too easy. I may be young but I'm not stupid.

Why must I even choose? Why not carry on as before?
Well there, you made your choice.

Hold on a second. I don't even know what I'm choosing between?
Your old and new life.
You must display your love to the world even if it makes you feel uncomfortable.
You must continue to let your heart say what it must.
You can change the course of your destiny.
Change will come. It has come. It is here.
You think no one hears you.
You sense it's all for nothing.
I'm here to tell you that others are listening.
You are inspired and so you must keep going.
I support you.
I am the spark and the light of creation.

You have so much fire, so much passion. Why bother with me?
I see potential. I see the birth of new things.

I'm afraid. What if the excitement compels me to cross a line?
Then you'll deal with whatever transpires. Isn't that what the Strength card tells you?

No, it's the Lust card that tells me that--Crowley had a different focus.

Morality and ethics weigh heavy on me. There's an inner struggle that's taken shape but it's feeding my creativity. It's this struggle that keeps me inspired to keep exploring. It just seems all wrong and yet so right. I don't want it any other way. I've always done the right thing. I will always do the right thing. I'm just not so sure what the right thing is. Is the voice of tradition speaking or am I evolving into my self? The card tells me I'm walking into danger but that I'll know how to handle it. I must be the maiden taming the lion.

There is no danger here except for the danger you create in your mind. Doesn't the Lust card also tell you to delight in the moment? To engage with life? To pay attention?

I wish I had your vision, your lightheartedness, your enthusiasm.
I don't show up in a reading unless the querent possesses these qualities...

Tuesday, February 9, 2010


I don't want to give the impression that I'm lonely or sad. I've read through my blogs and a fear took over--I sound perhaps depressed or under the weather. Although I have felt these emotions throughout my life, I'm not writing about these category of feelings, at least not in the way we're accustomed to understanding them. In fact, I haven't felt these emotions for a long while, ever since I changed my lifestyle but that's for another blog. Maybe I care too much what others think but I feel I should be really clear about something.

I'm exploring my ideas and spiritual sentiments in this space. People do it through music or art or any other creative outlet. At this time, I choose to explore through writing. Words are funny sometimes. But honestly, I don't feel the need to write when I'm happy or ecstatic--these aren't feelings I want to explore. Most of the time I have an idea about what I want to share but the flavor of the piece is revealed as I go along. I can't pretend here. It's unfair to me and the reader. I can't freely talk about this face to face, not unless I'm part of a group where expression is encouraged, where the format is designed to explore such ideas. However, the ideas don't freely come to me when I'm face to face with another person, no matter who it is. This isn't entirely true, of course. There are those special and rare people I speak to openly who simply get me. I just find that on paper, I can express my feelings poetically in a way I'm not able to express vocally. On paper, there isn't anything holding me back--I'm not distracted by a look in the eye, or some other form of non verbal communication that would indicate the other person is in a hurry or just not listening. Even if the other is fully engaged, I'm not able to be fluid with my thoughts. The poetry is lost. I don't know how else to put it. The magic is gone. It takes a back seat. It stops breathing. That's why I write because here it flows easily and uninterrupted.

I lean towards the highly Romantic. I'm investigating those things that I don't want to go unnoticed or unacknowledged. Here, it's all about depth. There's got to be some kind of depth because otherwise, it's just not worth it for me. There's plenty of meaningless stuff I could occupy my time with but I choose not to entertain that here. I want to explore the intangible, the unseen, that ever elusive veil. My cup is half full and sometimes it overflows. If there's one thing I've learned about myself is that I need contrast. In the dark, I'm able to see the light and appreciate it for what it truly is. In my sweet sorrow (which is unlike sadness), I can taste how great the joy is (which is unlike happiness). Where there's a front, there's a back. That's what I know. That's what I like to explore. Gibran may have written from the heart but I never once thought he was a sad person. When you speak from the heart, you naturally reside in sacred territory. You speak from a place of universal and unconditional Love not love. The heart won't let me disrespect it by being false or insincere.

This so called longing I speak of is not meant to be satiated in its entirety. I'd have nothing to write about otherwise. I don't even know what this longing is exactly. And it isn't designed to be filled by some other thing or person if only to provide some insight and further exploration. I'm content with my state of being. This is about self-exploration.

Monday, February 8, 2010

Zen & Motorcycles

Yesterday night went horribly wrong. I felt anxious and uneasy and was fighting off what seemed like a cold but not really. I hadn't felt that dark in a long long time. It's still lingering this morning. Perhaps this is what happens when one divulges and shares, when the centers of ourselves open up. Like a friend said to me the other day, When you talk to the Universe, the Universe talks back...Maybe it's all a necessary release but if I cry anymore, I'll have to make myself some wings and fly away.

There's a point when I cry where suddenly, I get some kind of revelation and the tears just stop. Maybe I spoke too soon when I concluded that it wasn't loneliness I was experiencing a week ago. And maybe it isn't loneliness per Se but a kind of spiritual isolation. It's like the more I dig, the more isolated I feel. I thought I'd develop a sense of freedom with inner knowledge or wisdom. I mean, I've been asking for this. I've been putting it out there for years. Show me the way. Show me the way. Show me the way, like a mantra that goes on automatic with or without my knowledge. Then there's a knock on the door and when you go to open it, the information floods in. You know there's no turning back.

I was immediately comforted by memories of my motorcycle ride over a year ago. An old acquaintance discovered how much I wanted to go for a ride on his Harley or how much I wanted him to take me out for a ride on his Harley. R is special. I knew he had that something I don't see or notice in many people. I just gravitated towards his philosophy. He had a way of calming me down, of making me see what's truly important and how easily I become rattled by nonsense and trivialities. He reflects a kind of freedom I don't experience in my daily activities. He's always so still, so centered, and so on purpose.

I remember how fast the bike was going, the roaring sound of the engine and wheels, how close my feet were to the ground, the way my hair whipped against my face. I recall looking up and seeing nothing but sky and some clouds. I told myself then and there, that I would remember that moment forever. There's a stillness that takes place in the mind in the midst of all that movement and sound. I was everywhere and nowhere simultaneously. R took me to a coffee shop somewhere up north in what appeared to be a biker's town. I'd never seen so many bikes in one place and I can't even begin to speak of the comraderie between these men. It didn't matter where we were on the road, if a biker rode by, we'd get a salute, a hello. I took a liking to a tiny antique store right next to the coffee shop. I remember feeling as though I was in a different part of the world and in many ways, I was. I was residing in a different place within myself looking at the world through another set of lenses.

R says to me, You should see your face right now. Yes, I was high. Something about the open road lifted me up, way up. And yet I settled into myself quite nicely. On our way out of this heaven, he made a right turn on a small road by a stream and a line of people looking to catch some fish. I will never forget how the sun sparkled through the trees, how vibrant the yellow, orange and red leaves looked to my eyes. It occurred to me then the way it occurs to me now--I belonged to nothing and no one out there on this road. It's like if I had been obliterated, it wouldn't have bothered me. I was free and not at all boggled down by my left brain. I had no where to go and no where to be even though in reality, my parents were expecting me for Thanksgiving dinner. I was envious of those who were able to let go of the good life as it were and settle for well, maybe a better life. I admired how R knew how to be under any circumstance.

But I'm not free like that. I'm still trying to find the balance, still trying to figure out when to surrender or trek on. I asked for this. I want these dark nights of the soul. It's the only way I know how to discover myself at this point. I've got to infuse more laughter into all of this, keep it light and steady. When I find the recipe, I'll fill you in.

Friday, February 5, 2010

The Wizard

He says I have to dig deeper. He says it's the only way I'll overcome. He insists shallowness will get me nowhere. I stand there at the door in a basement of a house. In front of me are rows of bookshelves and what feel like ancient texts in all different colours--rich purples, reds, and golds. I intuitively understand that everything I need to know rests in this dwelling. To my right sits a Wizard. He wears a long, purple pointed hat and a shiny purple robe with gold symbols. I find it odd that he sits behind a desk that appears to be too small for his height, his stature. Then I perceive that this image is perhaps on purpose to create a certain impression and some kind of poetic effect. It works. He says, You know, you're going to have to deal with all of this some day. And I answer him by saying, Yes, I know. But I really don't know. I don't have a clue. Well, that's not entirely true but sometimes, just sometimes, I really wish I didn't have a clue or inclination.

I walk upstairs and out the front door but the memory of it is a blur. Like a blanket laid out by the gods, I see nothing but open space as far as the eye can see. It's cloudy but warm and slightly windy. When I turn to look behind me, I notice the structure from which I came--squared shape, made of stone, with a flat roof top. There are two white pillars, one on each side of the porch which is a single step from the ground. On my left, I see Jesus leaning against one of the pillars. He says nothing. He never says anything. It's an agreement we have.

You see, for a lucid dreamer like me (one who knows s/he is dreaming), to see the dead is a pretty frightening thing. Whenever I have a dream of someone who's passed, it's understood s/he is not to utter a word to me unless I'm asking a question or making a comment. I just don't want to hear what they have to say. I don't want to know what the message is...through words. Words from the dead and I just don't mix. It doesn't matter that it's just a dream. I can't put any faith in just, not in this context. I sense there would be too much power in the delivery. I don't trust in the idea that they'd ever have anything positive to share. That being said, a dream of Jesus never makes me feel uneasy. On the contrary, I'm always left feeling quite high. So Jesus stands there and stares at me with arms folded. He has a way of making me feel safe and whole. I also see a faint smile on the side of his face. But the same rule applies to him, nonetheless. If he needs me to know anything, he's got to come at me with feeling. I'm a feeler.

I want this life to have meaning and purpose. Otherwise, what's the point? Why bother? Why care? Why anything? But I'm the only one that can infuse meaning and purpose into my life. Me and me alone. There are teachers that can help show the way but ultimately it's up to me, up to us, up to those of us who want more or who want what is but aren't able to see what is. Jesus is a self-master. I'm not even close. There's so much work to do, so much information to unravel and I'd rather surrender to fantasy and dream today. But maybe that's part of the work, my work. So I'll smile and say nothing more.

Thursday, February 4, 2010


I sit in a corner of a room that feels warm and inviting. There is one window facing west and from my viewpoint, all I see is sky with some floating clouds and a hint of sunshine. I don't want to get up and interrupt this feeling so I continue to look around. There is a rectangular wooden table that takes up most of the space and I'm aware of how much I like the scent of pine.

I could stay in this room forever--feels like a late Sunday afternoon in August. I get a slight chill from the air outside but it suits me just fine. I'm not alone. Johnny Cash sits at one corner of the table with a guitar on his lap, his arms outstretched and hands folded. I've never seen hair so black, so velvety. I gather he's in his thirties here. He looks quite sharp and calm. He stares at June who sits right in front of him. Thank goodness for June. She knew how to take care of him. She knew how to love him. What a poet. What a man. I can't help but hear his music in my head. He was so real, so dark and broken. Musicians are the innovators of this world.

I notice Cobain and Zappa at the table as well sitting on the left of June at some distance. They discuss a chord change. Zappa says something obviously eye opening because Cobain suddenly looks up, one brow lifting, amused at the idea he hadn't thought of himself. Zappa is something else, even here among the others. He's always so strong, so sure, and unwavering. He's always one step ahead, a genius and a rock god.

Cobain's blond hair is a nice contrast to Cash's and Zappa's. He's still twenty seven and I can't believe I'm older than he was when he passed!! It's all so so strange. I recall the number of dreams I'd had of Kurt after his death. I still wonder whether he actually took his own life. In one of my lucid dreams, we were sitting in a bar. I could smell the stench of smoke, its heaviness, how it saturated everything. Cobain looked pasty white, his eyes full of sparkle and glitter but void of any kind of real light, a sort of dull display of a man that wasn't. It just seemed as though his light was trapped from behind the eyes. I sensed the cold coming off his body although he wore a long brown coat to keep himself warm. I remember saying, They say you could have been murdered. He lifts from his chair, his face approaching mine, his lips aiming for my right ear and whispers, That was the mocking bird, with the most disconcerting smile.

I notice Joan of Arc. What a presence. And oh how young! Her sword sits to the right of the window on the floor like a beacon. I wonder how Joan's small frame could carry the weight of such a thing. The sun shines through the clouds like some eager lover and then settles in nicely lighting everything up, creating some dancing shadows on the wall as well. Everyone's eyes are fixed on how spectacular the sword shines. I can't help but feel Joan's courage and strength and how crazy and frightening her journey must have been. Here, she sits quietly meditating on some spot on the floor and not too far from her armor.

Brandon Lee, standing silent and pained with arms crossed, stares aimlessly out the window. His eyes are now met by flat rooftops, some shrubs, a few trees and a chirping bird. He's still in costume as Eric Draven from The Crow. It's like he has a hard time parting with it. As Eric, he loses his life and his Shelly on the night before the day of their wedding. He avenges her death as well as his own. I think it's the greatest love story ever told by James O'Barr who is no stranger to tragedy. What's so unbelievable, so heartbreaking is that as Brandon, he too misses the bride that never was. Due to an accident on the set of the movie, he was pronounced dead on March 31, 1993 and was supposed to be married on April 17 to Eliza, just seventeen days later! Brandon is beautiful. I like how his guitar hangs from his side.

Jesus and Gurdjieff are speaking softly because they're the only two aware that I'm even in the room! I'm a little amused by that. I mean of course they know. I can only imagine what they're going on about, the way they communicate with their eyes. I can't even say I'm impressed, maybe a little jealous. I'm through with figuring out riddles and deciphering messages. At least that's how I feel right at this moment. Tomorrow may be different.

George Harrison and St.Teresa of Avila are here as well but they come and go like fleeting thoughts. Some day soon, I'll focus and devote an entire page to each but as for now, The Fourth Way is pressing hard upon my mind. It's time to rethink a few things.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010


At 4:30am, he suddenly rises from bed and mumbles words I can't quite make out as he heads for the restroom. Upon his return, he lays down and the words continue to roll off his tongue and straight to the back of my head. I know some heavy philosophical ideas are circulating in his mind.

He thinks that if the real came for me, I’d turn it away.
He thinks that I bury my light under a bushel. He’s always making references to Jesus.
He thinks that a part of me wants to be normal and says, So sad. Sad. Sad.
He thinks I listen to my family too much at the expense of my self.
He thinks I don’t want truth bad enough.

I hear Muse's Map of the Problematique play in my head now.

Life will flash before my eyes
So scattered and lost
And no one thinks they are to blame
Why can’t we see
That when we bleed, we bleed the same

I can’t get it right
Get it right
Since I met you

I try not to say anything. I want sleep to come back and reclaim me but it doesn’t just yet.

He says, Who knows, maybe we’ll have to part ways one day. My head feels warm, my eyes focused on the wall. This is one of many things he won’t remember having said in the morning.

I’m not sure what shocks me most. Is it maybe, part ways, or one day?

He gets this way when he’s on a mission.
He feels the need to be preachy.
He forgets he isn’t the only one searching.
He’s looking for the real in the normal.
I’m looking for some kind of normal in the real.

He forgets what he's learned of me.
He forgets how deep and how far a woman’s heart goes and what dreams and secrets are trapped within its chambers.
He forgets how strength has shaped me, how it shields me.
He forgets how he’s supported in his quest for truth.

And all this…because I fell asleep during the movie, Meetings with Remarkable Men.

But then again, I understand he talks in his sleep. And in this sleep, he
says things he fears in himself.

So I'm relieved when sleep comes back for me knowing he's just projecting.

Yes, he's just projecting...

Monday, February 1, 2010

Gibran & Ziadeh

I'm ashamed. Gibran and Ziadeh have been on my mind. My original copy of Love Letters burned in a fire over 10 years ago. Trying to get another copy soon after was difficult and had to be ordered but I finally received it a little later. It's been on my book shelf ever since...never once having been picked up until yesterday.

The book is a collection of letters between Kahlil Gibran and May Ziadeh spanning over a 19 year period between the years 1912 and 1931. I felt a connection with Gibran after reading The Prophet, his most famous piece. When I read it, I resonated with the words and the images that conjured up in my mind and the feelings that stirred in my heart. Half of what I say is meaningless but I say it so that the other half may reach you. This one line is a reflection of the man and the art.

Gibran's correspondence with Ziadeh, at first, was an exchange of views and opinions regarding literature and other pieces of work. As the years passed, the letters took on a more spiritual and deeply poetic feel. Gibran and Ziadeh never knew that in their nows, in their moments of strength and of weakness, in their joys and sorrows, these letters would find their way to the public. I am so grateful for this gift and to be a present witness to a love that was and still is one of the most beautiful exchanges of deep, heart felt affection that I have ever read on paper. A kind of longing and yearning for the real permeates the pages. I could feel the desire and the challenge in trying to keep a thought, a feeling in the now and how Gibran made every attempt to make the eternal tangible, fluid, and not separate from his art and his life. He was a reflection of spirit and all that entails.

In one letter May asks what the colour of Kahlil's suit is. In his response, he describes two suits, one made of flesh and bones and the other as one designed for dervishes (I love that image of the dervish). He indicates that his garment is also stained with paint. Then he goes on to say how he'd like to divest himself of flesh and bones because he doesn't want them about him when he speaks with her. When I first read that line, I had to stop reading. It's just so moving. One can't help but be awakened and then transported to those spaces within oneself that up until then, had either been hidden or neglected. Gibran sees his flesh, his body as a distraction, and something that gets in the way of that kind of expression which comes from a place of spiritual purity and sensibility. There is no need for I love you. Gibran makes our present day expression of love and emotion look trivial, meaningless and painfully superficial. And of course it isn't. It's just that the correspondence between Gibran and Ziadeh feels different and the magic that is created and felt cannot be denied.

The most interesting aspect of their relationship is that they never met, ever, at least not in person. And yet they were spirit. After rereading Love Letters, I remember why I so thoroughly enjoyed it the first time. I'm aware of the fact that at one time, they were both alive and breathing, that they each roamed the earth and their own sacred spaces. I imagine what it would have been like for May to have received that third, fifth, tenth letter...I also wonder what life would have been like for them had they met. Would that kind of dialogue have continued?

It appears safe to pour the contents of one's being and heart out onto paper. I don't have any trouble with that myself but I can't say it's easy. I do sense a kind of vulnerability that is created with an unveiling of sentiment or emotion. If you know that someone important to you is going to be on the receiving end whom you've never actually met, you're careful as to how and what words come through because you're residing in sacred territory and you don't mess around with the sacred. I'm sure it wasn't easy for May to profess her love considering the times, social conventions and restrictions. The genuine outpouring in these letters is expressed through a sort of spiritual language that is unmistakable and poetically powerful. This was not a typical relationship by any means.

There is also something to be said about the anticipation of the next letter. I imagine a great passion was continually ignited and the fact that they weren't involved physically only made their bond greater. I think the dialogue would have ended to a certain extent. It would have had no choice but to change. On paper, the dream becomes the real, the constant, the eternal. But in this world, in the world they would have known and experienced, and in person, the real would have been somewhat obscured because it wouldn't have had that kind of poetic background or justice to keep it steady and fluid. For brief moments, one can maintain that kind of intensity but out here where most of us live in our left brain, it is an endeavour, a life long task to find the right balance between the left and right hemispheres. I think a little bit of the magic would have naturally been lost which is why I think I am so moved by their unique relationship to begin with--it doesn't fit into any other mold I can think of when it comes to love, unity or the eternal flame, as Gibran liked to call it. To me, both Gibran and Ziadeh were evolved beings capable of fusing all parts of themselves into one.