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Crafting Variety

When Daylight Leaves

When Daylight Leaves

As the light recedesMoonrise
A shroud of darkness descends
Little snippets of joy
Bring sorrow instead

Heart mired in shadow
Coated with black
Lethargy spreads
Immobilized limbs

The soul keens silently
Echoes Its pain under the skin
Bruised knees battered from the ground

Did not ask for this
Do not want this
Anguish from foggy reason

All details magnified
A cut, becomes a slice, becomes a gaping wound
Unbalanced by a tear
Choking on the ones held back

Flat on the ground
Rocks rip skin
Pressed by burden
Without, within
Weighted
Paralyzed with desperation

Mind’s battle
Fake smile
Hidden light
A puppet with routine strings
Dance of shadow

One step, another
Forward only by will
Seeking light
Finding none
Holding on

Just holding on

 

Amy Dionne, 2015

Crafting Variety

Samhein Musings

Blessed Samhein.

The harvest is done and put away. Preparations for the long winter underway. The temperature dips, the clocks are set back, the animals don their winter cTree in Shadowoats.

Hail now the growing dark, for that is when we face the questions from the shadows that linger within. Only in the time of dark are those thoughts freely able to rise to the surface. They are personal. Necessary. Residing within the shadowed places in your body and soul. Accented by questions left unasked.

This is a time of shadow, a dark need arisen.

Remember though, shadows can only exist because the light does. While the uneasy topics rise up and those unanswered questions demand a response, the light will return in its own time.

Until then, sit with those dark places in soulful reflection. From now until the spring, ask the darkness what lessons it has for you. The answers that you didn’t even realize you seek are within.

Crafting Variety

Unbalanced

Credit to Andy Goldsworthy
Credit to Andy Goldsworthy

Unbalanced
Tightrope without a net
Strung together on threadbare wings

Slid my hand in yours
But you let go
Too much weight

My charred mind
With its coal black thoughts
Left no room for light

Close your eyes and truly see
Your shine is fake
The top down smile doesn’t fool me

Get off your platform
At least I crawled
Emerged covered in mud

Not trying to drag you down
See reality instead
The ground is stronger than the air you walk on

Pull me up and I will counter-weight
Together in a spiral
Until the energy spun connects us both

Swirling, entwined with the universe
Sight clear, voice strong
Light and dark in harmony

Life’s challenges
Ebb and ease
Standing side by side

Amy Dionne, 2015

Crafting Variety

The Door Within

inner doorVision of hidden realms within
Behind the inner door
A beacon of journey’s end

Obscured by false fog
Lured away with shiny promises
The key won’t turn
Clues change constantly
Secrets guarding the path

Frustrations mount on twisted pathways
Draped with haunted memories
Harsh words, and bitter regrets

Valiant efforts
Yet the door won’t open
Stuck
Warped shut
Blocked by jagged layers of tangled arguments
Veiled misunderstandings
Warped by time
Kicking batters the door
Fevered curses blister the lock

Sinking against the door
Unyielding
Structure hard on weary bones
Despair clings
Heartache swirls
Hope escapes through tears

Lost
Damaged
Broken
An empty shattered husk

Until all is given up
Until all is surrendered
Until all past versions release

Gentle caress of a new breeze
A wedge of light
Another door
No lock
Swung ajar

The true door was present all along
Unseen until freedom permeated old realities
Former ways that no longer served
Beliefs wrapped in false trimmings

Only the journey knew the way

Amy Dionne, 2015

Crafting Variety

A Love Letter from a Story

happieroutsideThe following letter was told to me by one of my characters – Evan, from Intertwined, a fantasy story about magic, defeating the old ways, and realizing that other cultures have the same heart.

Dialoguing with my characters is a technique I use to get to the center of my characters, or ask them to open up to me about what a certain problem is or figure out why they’re quiet. This particular instance resulted in him directing his thoughts towards me, and knowing I needed his reassurance that day. These characters of mine are why I keep writing. I can’t ever let them down.

Evan writes:

Hey gorgeous. I see the confusion in your eyes. You’re pulled in so many directions. You want to make everyone happy. You’re worried about security. You’re worried about making the wrong choices.

While your internal turmoil is twisting you into knots, might I just add that you should choose us? Your characters. Your stories. Here’s why – we’ll never let you down. You will never lack for worlds to create or plots to construct or relationships to cultivate.

Sure you could just continue reading others’ works and find some level of happiness. They won’t be the stories you need to write. They won’t be written with your voice. They won’t have your heart and soul entwined in them.

That’s why we love you. That’s why we show up when you ask it of us. That’s why we let you destroy our lives, our families, our relationships, so you can put us back together in a way only you can construct.

So while you’re making those grand choices and plans to secure your future, bank on us. We exist because of you, and we won’t ever let you down. We will love you through it all, and are so ready to come alive to your readers.

So choose us. We’re worth it.
Love, Evan

With communications like that, how could I ever not believe it?

Image snagged from my friends at Happier Outside.

Crafting Variety

Fort Popham

far sideNormally I just upload photos to my various social media collections and call it good. I realized, however, that I haven’t updated this blog in ages and ages. Thought it might be a decent way to share what I’ve been up to. So I’m including lots of pictures from my vacation day when I went down the coast a little to Fort Popham.

Luckily, I went first thing in the morning. If you’re in downeast Maine, you know that the best thing to do in the summer is either avoid the tourist sites or get there early. I was there early, and good thing. There were only a few cars when I arrived at the Fort, and when I left there were cars everywhere, and others circling trying to find spaces.

This trip was a reconnection with the water element. The ocean is often the right place to let go of anything that weighs you down, and to make space for new opportunities and energy to come into your life. Looking at the ocean just puts life into perspective. It’s ancient power supporting life makes most anything we deal with fairly insignificant. So I gave the ocean some old habits and made a new path for authentic creativity.

Did it work? Time will tell, and if not, then back to the water’s edge I will go. Until you get a chance to wander to the ocean, enjoy these pictures from my excursion. Oh, and a note about the Fort itself – the construction is incredibly neat with the materials and the angles. I think it’s impossible to take a bad picture there with the amount in visual interest in each section.

Crafting Variety

Spirit Animals

spirit animalsI’ve had a number of people ask me about connecting with spirit animals, which is what inspired me to write this post. I’m no expert, but I’ve done a fair amount of research and believe myself to be at least a competent interpreter of messages from the spirit animal companions. I hope you find something useful from this post, whether you are a follower of the spirit animal concept or not. Feel free to reach me at the connections on my contact page if you have any questions.

Why?

The main question is – why does it matter? They’re not real (at least in physical form anyway…), so what purpose does it have to try and connect with something that’s not in corporeal form?

  • They make you stop and think.
  • You have to connect with the outside world and observe nature and its interactions.
  • Using the presence of a spirit animal can help in times of crisis, sadness, or heightened emotion. What you’ve learned by studying the relevant animal may be the catalyst for handling a situation calmly or finding the will to move forward. Alternately, studying an animal with grace, beauty, and power may help translate to your own life.

Finding your Spirit Animal

There is no one right way to figure out your spirit animal. There are many books and decks that highlight the relationships – I generally use Ted Andrew’s Animal Speak, and Medicine Cards. There are also fun online quizzes (yeah, we know not to hold too much belief in what the internet says, right?) along with a great number of knowledgeable people. Specifically, those in Native American cultures, Shamanistic roles, or pagan paths often use animal connections as part of their belief systems. Many are quite happy to talk about such things with people that have an open mind.

Recognizing when animals show up outside of their normal realms is a critical part of determining your connection with them. There are birds and insects and small critters around constantly. What if they show up at the same time or place every day for a period though? It’s not coincidence that animals chose to reveal themselves to you.

  • Look for the not so obvious animals. Yes, it’s easy to want to pick a “cool” animal like the wolf, eagle, or bear, and while those are legit and awesome spirit guides, remember that sometimes the not so obvious ones have just as much to teach us. There’s a great deal of wisdom to be found with animals such as mice, rabbits, and turtle guides.
  • What animal keeps showing up for you? Is there an animal that shows up often when you commute to work? Or shows up online constantly? In your dreams? The snow leopard was like that for me. After continuously showing up in my life – through artwork and social network feeds, it finally occurred to me with a nudge from a friend that the snow leopard was trying to speak to me.
  • What animal makes sense? What animal feels right? Your gut feeling is your best guide after you’ve done all the research and pulled the cards.

Utilization

So you find your spirit guide, or think you have anyway. What’s next? Couple of things to keep in mind:

  • Spirit animals come and go, depending on what you need to learn. There are some that are always with you, but many guides may only be around for a time.
  • Apply their teachings. What’s going on your life? What do you need to prepare for? How are you handling whatever storms are being thrown your way? Do you need to let loose and have some fun, or build your storehouse for the future? Do you need more connection with others or to be more solitary?
  • Determine how multiple animals are working together, even if they feel somewhat contradictory at first.This is a difficult aspect to learn. An example is – both a predator and a prey animal appear as your guides. How do you reconcile the obvious contradictions? What aspects of each animal do you need to focus on, and how do they work together in life’s circle?

Resistance

 As important as finding out which animals resonate with you, is finding out which ones do NOT. And why. Are you resisting because you don’t want to admit that the spirit guides are showing you areas you may be weak? Are you ignoring parts of your life or your character that need addressing? The message that these animals have to tell you is important. Do not ignore them just because you don’t want to hear what they have to say. The message will manifest in one way or another until you learn what they have to teach.

Journey

Embarking on a journey with a spirit animal is a challenging and rewarding task. It teaches us to listen, to be open, and to apply what is said to our lives. Doing so can help improve your connection to the world. There’s a lot to be learned about relationships with others, and with yourself, by spending time with your guides. They strip away all that which is hidden in human interaction. Animals are honest, and clear in a way that humans have forgotten how to be. We can learn from that.

Enjoy your journey as you determine your animal guides. If you have questions along the way, don’t hesitate to ask.

Crafting Variety

Transformation

Transformation
Transformation, from http://davidji.com/transformation-weekend-guided-meditation/

Transformation
Is not optional
Life doesn’t wait for us
To catch up
Run through the bush with thorns
The blood is supposed to be there
One way or another
Arrive

Broken, battered, bleeding
Still, you show up
Find things are different
Than your perceptions
They exist as they should

Pull off the expectations
Cease trying to shape
What cannot be controlled
There is no winning

There is only becoming

Amy Dionne, 2015

Crafting Variety

Grief is Sneaky

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAGrief sneaks up in unexpected moments. Yes, it’s full and present during the obvious times of shock, and wakes and funerals. Where it truly lives though is after the flowers have wilted and the food storage containers are back to their owners, and friends have stopped calling every single day to make sure you’re okay. It’s then, in those quiet moments, that grief settles in.

It’s not the loud, tear filled grief from before. It’s the quiet grip that shows up unexpectedly, while waking or running an errand, or reading a passage that hits just the right chord. In those moments grief wraps around your heart and lungs, where tears may only flow silently, where the pain is at its most real. For a moment it’s hard to think about continuing whatever task is laid out before you, because you can’t see anymore through the pain.

It does ease, that despair, that clutch of grief, because your loved ones that have gone on want to know you will move forward. They still support your dreams and goals and life even more from beyond the grave.

Honor them by living the life that they couldn’t, the one that was cut short for whatever reason. Live fully and love without reservation.

To honor your loved ones, to honor your grief, then simply live.

In memory of Tanya Shersnow and Mark Fisher.
Amy Dionne, 2015

Crafting Variety

Awakening

Yesterday I woke up
To my own powerfalls
To cease being small
To embrace the wild within

Today I rose up
Decided not to hide
Determined to live fully
Dedicated to my true self

Tomorrow I fly
Chasing dreams
Cascading with my heart’s desires
Conquering fear and doubt

For my life
I dance, I sing, I laugh
Breathing in, letting go,
Knowing who I am

Amy Dionne, 2015

Photo courtesy of Cindy Turcotte, used with permission.