Days on the Edge

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Minerva has been still and silent. She has stood mute these past months in her dark quiet garage, while the lake froze, plants died, and Persephone journeyed down into the underworld. The Minervas; metal and zoetic, have been in hibernation of a most useful variety. Now it’s time to converse with mortality and investigate the inevitability of rebirth. There are tasks to be completed here. It’s time to get busy, time to gather up those soul pieces and bits of self left laying around the fields and forests of my childhood.

We sprung Minerva out of her fancy RV accommodations on the 7th day of April and she thanked us for the winter comfort by starting right up. She was holding the same air from October, strange thing; we went out and came back in the same atmosphere. It snowed that night, and the one after. We laughed at our foolishness of flip-flops and searched for socks.

Appropriate motor home respites are appropriately closed here until the threat of freeze and guarantee of snowless camping returns. Minerva has yet to clear her internal cavities of the pink elixir that makes it possible for her to survive in this climate. She is out of the garage, but operating “without services.” We have been reminded that life for man, woman, and dogs, can be indeed very simple. We need to be warm, we need eat and we need to eliminate. The order of importance changes with the weather and the time of day. Spiritual enlightenment appears to take a backseat ala Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs, and yet I am always brushing shoulders with she who created this story.

 Lest you imagine an isolated off-road campsite at the icy edge of a granite cliff, sporting a plucky Minerva going “self contained”, not so. We have three wheels on blacktop, watching life unfold in a suburban community. We are indeed parked amidst the tall white pines and leafless oaks at the edge of the Adirondacks. This edge is also the driveway of open hearted family and their Ark-like home with actual working plumbing. School buses and garbage trucks, spring garden clean-up and curious neighbors, all staples of our past lives are just outside our nifty dinette slide out.

We are in search of a home, here where home was, a long time ago. This quest calls for senses more ancient and finely tuned than can exist in one lifetime. The work of the soul is best done under dark rich dirt too deep for cold. It is the timeless place where our Mother’s heart beats out the rhythm of the waves and wind. It is the place we remember who we are and who we have always been. That is the quest. This is the place.

Blessings on those who have wondered about Minerva’s whereabouts. Words have not been the chosen medium. Minerva is in a right brain free fall, a Zen-esque “how close to the bone can you go and not bleed to death?” The Koan for this month is

Where is Home? It is nowhere but here.

Koan – Definition and More from the Free Merriam-Webster …http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/koan : a paradox to be meditated upon that is used to train Zen Buddhist monks to abandon ultimate dependence on reason and to force them into gaining sudden intuitive enlightenment

Color Me Yellow and Sing Me a Song

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If you believe your life is random and separate, read no further

Move along down your uncertain path, unencumbered by mystery

Pay no attention to the music that underscores your life

It will only confuse and befuddle an only ME

 This life I have chosen a fine concerto written for the key of WE

Optimistically performed in the chaff of a corn field, on a stormy day in October

A melody of connection sent out on the wind, set free by design

Not a prudent choice, but mine to make, this time ‘round

We imagine the perfect phrases from a polished instrument

A clear tune moving through time- forward and back, illuminating the revered

Human egos and the flotsam of strong currents render their divine melody

Be lost to whirling winds, gnawing teeth, and inattention

I am not a mid age woman with a crow on my head

I am actor and audience in the Opera of matter, movement, and miracle

The symphony of connection is a birthright, a codex to be savored; one life at a time

Perfect phrases from a polished instrument we can all hear

 

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We took a ride to see the leaves in October.

We went to celebrate our harvest of good health with the glorious colors of autumn.

We went in search of apples, cider doughnuts, blue skies and red Maples.

We went with a sense of immediacy; defendable to those living close to the earth, or those not long for this world. “Hurry let’s go, before they are gone….”

It is one of the miracles of impermanency that in their last glorious days, any leaf, on any tree, will individuate with glowing authenticity. Even as it drifts back to its Earthly origin a single leaf shouts out “This is who I am and this was my experience here, let me sing my song and shout my colors. Let me share this with you!”

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We took to the road to witness our world as luminous, by the leaves made numinous

North out of Florida, through Georgia and into the mountains, we journeyed heavy of tire, but light of heart in the roving ranchette that is Minerva. Having spent many months in a forced retirement community known as “Storage,” Minerva was ready to rumble. The quest to savor and sample the glorious days of Harvest is an ancient tradition in my family. Three generations wandering country roads on a Sunday afternoon after church. Our elders named the trees, read the colors for weather omen, happily radiating us with multi- generational layers of earthly experience.

“Remember the Nor’easters last year that took them all down? The ice storm of 58?”

The colors on Kodachrome forever preserved in my mind. Musty sweaters and piles of squash, an over ripe apple, the last yellow jacket; sounds and smells illuminated by the Halleluiah chorus of falling leaves in sun bright colors, these images live in my soul.

Life isn’t a sure thing. Learn from the imperative of the “Beautiful Day.” Go now!

 

The Leaves were honored in countless tributes in October.

We saw them. Red Maples and rusty Oaks, Hickory and Beech standing against a clear blue sky swept clear of humidity. After the brilliant but monochromatic gold of New Mexico, then multi-textured, perpetual green of Florida, I thought I would weep at the beauty. I think my brain hadn’t processed color and light at this magnitude for a very long time. I drank in the colors by the gallon. My ancestors wiped pie sticky fingers on worn aprons, and smiled.

The leaves sang their colors simultaneously. A vast chorus, all singing a different song. They had been the subtle back up musicians of green; anonymous and safe. These individuals in their last days were accorded all due respect as they announced their own demise. Remember the childhood celebration of the single leaf? The favored one plucked out from thousands by a small hand. It’s beauty enshrined between ironed wax paper and hung in the window.


 Individuation is a philosophical, spiritual and mystical experience (Jung, 1989b, p. 294). It is the goal of                   our psychological development and in metaphysical terms amounts to God’s incarnation (Jung, 1989b,                         p. 157). Individuation is the central concept and purpose of Jung’s Analytical Psychology (Jung, 1989a, p. 209


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So much diversity; clear and brilliant as they prepare to fall and rejoin the ultimate unity. All is exposed in the autumn of life; nature and nurture, character and cultivation. Attached and entwined, the scarlet poison ivy insinuates itself into the heights crawling its way up on the bark of trees. The woody grapevines and their clever corkscrew wrappers; we can see their trickiness clearly in October. The artifice of expansion is useless in Fall. Drop the yearning; a leaf life is but one season long. Better to go out singing.

In what was once a wall of analogous green, each different species is shouting out their identity, “Look at me! I am not a Maple or an Oak. I am a Beech and my essence is yellow!” Each leaf differentiating their experience from the thousand on the same branch. A fungus here and caterpillar there, a sunny spot or shady struggle, its time for the finale. As a leaf, in the bright short days of October, is this the best time to self actualize? Or the only time?

This magnificent display of innate creativity just before returning to dust, is it a last ditch dump of all the glory you came with, but never used?

Are you really any wiser or more beautiful than the “Greenies” of July? Or are they just too engorged with tomorrows to create extraordinary colors today?

Or is it the grace of clarity that arrives when we realize we are leaves and not the tree.

Happy Harvest

 

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A self-actualizer is a person who is living creatively and fully using his or her potentials.

 “What a Woman can do, she must do”

http://psychology.about.com/od/

theoriesofpersonality/a/hierarchyneeds_2.htm