An ordinary Sunday afternoon

Our little family is complete
Once more
The traveller’s slid into the warm bath
Of home
Deep delight writ large on her face

A stop at Piha, to keep jet lag in tow
A few wild rides on the waves, grateful for the surf rescuers on voluntary duty
In the rough and messy sea

The new abode and garden admired with glee and thrill
Then it’s down to business getting the barbie underway

Lighting and tending the charcoal,
Chopping, oiling, chatting
Lounging on the deck
Home-made cider lauded, sipped
Sharing stories
Re-connecting

Vegan sausage sizzle white bread
Tomato sauce and charred veggies
The order of the day
Onion-flavoured watermelon slices and
Bliss-balls a fitting finish

The pure joy of
Just hanging out together…
Family, on an ordinary Summer afternoon

17/02/19

Grief

I’ve been very aware of grief, my grief, in recent months. Not only because of my mother’s death, but also because of the support I experienced at work in the immediacy of that situation, because of the sense of community I have experienced in various groups I am part of and because of new and deep friendships I have been graced with. While the latter may seem unlikely partners of grief, for me these situations have highlighted the ache of the lack of a sense of belonging and connection I have felt in earlier times in my life. So here is a poem about grief – and what can happen when I remember to turn towards it and feel it, rather than trying to avoid or escape the pain of it.

Grief

With no-one around
Nowhere to go
Nothing to do,
But some work
For which the focus
Is all but
Totally
Shredded

Mind
Heart
And body
Have a field day
With restlessness
Agitation
Circling thoughts
With longing to
Feel connected
With shame
Popping into
The ring
Once more

Finally,
Many hours
Of distraction
And discomfort
Later,
Something
Wakes up:
Let me FEEL
What’s going on….

What tumbles
Out and
Into my space
Are the deepest
Saddest
Feelings of
disconnection
Isolation and
Loss
Along with the
Deepest
Saddest
Tears…

And longing
For being held
And held
And held
Some more..
Warmly
Lovingly
Safely

For being seen
And welcome:
My fragile
Little
Self

Feeling
The sorrow,
The sore
Raw
Emotion
Of loss
And grief

In wave
After wave,
Rolling in
Swirling
Crashing
Sucking back
At the core
Of my life..

Until they
Slowly
Slowly
Diminish
Reduce..
Relinquish
Their power

Until
Finally
Softness
And stillness
Land and
Find their place
On fine
Warm sand
On a calm
And present
Shore
Once more

Feeling seen
Held
And welcome

Being on retreat (2)

Being on retreat
It’s not all
Just peace
And bliss

It’s been long
Enough
I’ve sat by streams
Enough
Walked slowly
Contemplatively
Feeling my body
In time and space
Enough
Had refreshing dips
In beautiful
Swimming holes
Enough
I’ve bowed to
The lilies
To smell their
Exquisite perfume
Enough

Restless

Nowhere to go
Nothing to do


But going back
To being
Still
Coming to a true
Stop
Mind in body
Quiet

At rest

That’s all

09/01/19

The lily pond

Sitting at the lily pond
At the end of a
Hot
Full day
Of being

Hearing the soft humming
Of bees
The faintest little
Plip-plops of the goldfish
Blowing bubbles

Gentle smile
Soft belly
Tender heart

08/01/19

Magic waterfall (Te Moata)

Nothing short of divine
Joy like a pearl
Tumbling down from
The top
Till it joins its
Clattering
Splattering
Family
In the clear
Cold pool
Below

Joy bursting
From the heart
No words,
Full to
Overflowing

This magic waterfall
Showering its
Eternal grace,
Cascading over sharp
Hard rocks,
All the while forming
Its natural
Utter beauty
On its way
Down

Fierce love indeed

09/01/19

(With thanks and deepest gratitude to the two women who joined me here)

Being on retreat (1)

Settling into
Being here
Now

Open heart
Open mind

Extend a warm welcome
To all that’s here
This moment
    Sit
     Walk
     Rest
    Breathe
     Feel

Soft body
Soft heart
Open attention
Here
Now

That’s all

Meditation

All senses open
Breath, heart, soft open and kind
Present and content

Feeling my body
Soft vulnerability
Kindhearted welcome

Receive grace’s gift
Gift of life with every breath
With every heart-beat

Receive nature’s gift
The gift of authority
For your unique life
My story starts now

Attune to your heart
Attend to what you most love
Insight will arise

I’m here, this moment
Heart beating, breathing, conscious
Total mystery

Haunting words

“This is what I want to
stay alive for”
Words tumbling out
On the cliffs
Above Bethells Beach
Deeply affected
By the beauty
Of the place..
In search of healing
After surgery
Sixteen years ago

How can a mother
Facing her own mortality,
Say THAT?

Repeating the story
A number of times
In spite of myself,
In safe company only,
As if hearing it
One more time,
As if the honesty
Of the telling

Might lift the veil
Of bewilderment
And shame..
Might shine the light
Of insight..
Might redeem my
Parenting,
Somehow

This time
Sixteen years on
Infused by love
Of nature’s beauty
The story surfaces
Once again
Feeling the puzzling
Truth of it
Once more

Slowly understanding dawns

Wanting to stay alive
For this..

Feeling
The zinging
Raw beauty,
The absolute
Truth
Of Nature
Elating
Every cell