No is a complete sentence

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.

No is a complete sentence

The Gentle Connection

fire at winter BOWI’ve been thinking about my audience lately. My readers. After spending some time visioning, I’ve reached a couple of conclusions.

My voice is meant to be carried through quiet conversations and small gatherings. The messages waiting in my heart do not need to be broadcast. They should be listened to if they are wanted, never forced.

Instead I see friends gathering, groups of three or four or five, meeting for a drink or at the cafe or by the campfire. Perhaps dinner or movie night with a special someone. Candles lit, hearts light, comfy clothes.

Groups like these will go more quickly to that place of understanding, talking about subjects other than weather or sports. Even going past the latest headlines, although discussion may be spurred from them. These types of conversations echo the philosophers of old, the writers and artists, bohemian types, and all sorts of free thinkers. Those willing to dive deep, get messy, and open to new ways of thinking. Those that know themselves, their values, and their hearts.

These are the people I speak to as I write. They read the hushed words and make them resonate off the walls. these thoughts align and light within, and that soft warm flame travels from person to person, group to group. Shared intimately with like minds.

That is the home I seek for my stories and my musings. Listen, feel, and share. It is a gift offered with love, passion, and a yearning for connection.

The gentle kind.

No is a complete sentence

Help vs. Clear

Help vs. Clear buttonsI was warming up my coffee in the microwave this morning (the horrors of letting it cool off in the first place, right?) when I noticed something.

On the microwave, there’s a button next to the Clear/Off button that says Help. In the eight years or so that I’ve lived in this house, and the countless times I’ve used this microwave, that little button has never registered in my consciousness. Seriously. I stared at the keypad for a long moment asking if there was always help button.

Which led me to thinking – how many times do we bypass that four letter word in favor of ending something? How many times do we stop instead of ask for help due to pride or stubbornness? How often do we not look for other resources and answers and give up instead?

It’s definitely something I’ve done. My work with horses, or lately lack thereof, is a prime example. I know the type of work I want to explore – natural connection and growing a partnership with these magnificent animals. Using horses to heal the psyche and past trauma in others. Helping others gain confidence in their lives by working with these prey animals that are so much bigger than we are. To seek out the relationships and training that I believe will work, it takes effort. Time. Energy. All which I have precious little of. It’s been easier to ‘punch up clear’ (bonus points if you get the obscure Star Trek movie reference) rather than push the momentum forward.

The big part of this is going outside my comfort zone and asking for help. Admitting that I have no idea where to begin or what the end result is. Finding those horse folk with a similar mindset that can help guide me.

This morning’s revelation told me to push the damn HELP button already. Sharing knowledge and assistance is part of who we are as people. Finding your tribe and the group you need to move forward with. They’re out there, waiting and ready to connect. The universe opens doors when they are needed.

All you have to do is ask.

That’s what 2015 will be for me. Asking, seeking, trying. Connecting.

All because I will push the help button instead of clear.IMG_2351

 

p.s. After writing this morning, I cleared my altar and selected new items to begin the year with. One of those was a goddess card, and I randomly pulled Epona, goddess of the horse. Hello, universe, I hear you loud and clear.

No is a complete sentence

Yule Conversation

yule altarI come to the goddess imperfect,
Wounded, dragging baggage behind,
Tears leaving streaks,
Through dirt on my face.
Heart weighted with black memories,
Options lost,
Connections ignored,
Heart weary,
Sorrow filled soul.

The goddess does not acknowledge,
Does not ask about the journey,
Does not ask about the open wounds,
Or the scarce healed scars.

She speaks with ancient knowledge –
I do not ask
I’ve felt each lash endured, self inflicted or not.
She gazes upon me, resplendent, whole,
Answers my unasked questions.

Daughter, while I felt your pain,
I did not let it linger
I felt each hurt and honored it.
Each a chance to grow.
Scars mold who you are
Learning molds who you become.
Know the past, but
You are not there.

What will you do now that you’ve arrived?
Your journey led you here
To the well of renewal.
Do not walk that path again
For recognition,
Walk beside me now.
We shall go forth healed,
The present will lead you forward.

Walk with me.
And I do.

Amy Dionne, December 2014

No is a complete sentence

Center of a Dark Mind

Wander through the caves
The recesses of a charred mind
Alcoves of mystery
Reveal heartache, pain, loss
Cobwebs hide the dark entrance
Clingy strands of memories
Stick to the heart
Brush off the strings
That won’t let go

Wander into the darkness
The inner soul of truth
Reflections of clarity
Show the tarnished center
Hidden confessions, weary secrets
Tied tight from the ropes of fear
Gray, lifeless heart
Raw and scarred
Fibers poking in soft flesh
A constant reminder

Wander into the fog of reality

Amy Dionne, 2014

No is a complete sentence

Ritual of Mabon

There are few things in lif14 - 1e that resonate with me more than trees. Yesterday I was at a local apple orchard, an annual ritual with friends. The introvert in me decided to wander off for a few minutes alone. I wandered amongst the gnarled branches and trunks, touching the bark and selecting some of the multitudes of apples for baking into delicious goodies later.

Trees have always taught me about observation. As I nestled into the branches of one tree, watching the families meandering about the orchard, a few comments from the trees gently filled my mind.

These amazing organisms provide us with nourishment. They bear fruit to populate other trees and survive as an individual tree, but their fruit feeds creatures of all types. People and deer, birds and hornets. This one tree that grows from the ground can f14 - 3eed many.

The ritual of apple picking brings us together. Families with members young and old flock to the orchards every year. Those from the cities, and those that live in the country. Children interact with the trees, learning about how they bear fruit and how nature has to work together with water and nutrients. They get to see how the fruit is essential for life, as the apples are not only eaten, but preserved as jam or baked into pies and breads.

Communities celebrate the orchards and harvest festivals, some dedicated to apples. For this time, we reward the farmers and their hard work as they have lovingly tended their trees all year round. We spend our money giving back to support them. And the ritual of picking apples continues on.

Apple picking is a grea14 - 4t way to celebrate Mabon, (the fall equinox). The second harvest festival is lined up with harvesting the bounty from the earth. The earth gives us these loving gifts during the fall, and it is up to us to celebrate the life cycle.

Visit your local orchards. Take your kids, your families, and your friends. It is a small way of saying thanks to the earth for her generosity in sustaining our lives.

Blessed Mabon, and peace to all.

No is a complete sentence

Add to the World

Source: katrinamayer.com
Source: katrinamayer.com

I found this quote on the internet this morning, and it resonated deep within. As I wrote in my journal, I realized that I was writing a manifesto of sorts in response to that quote. Thought I would share to see if others had similar reactions, or if like me, the thought reached deep within.

I want to write words that caress the soul and cradle the heart.

I want to make creations that add beauty to functionality.

I want to bring joy to my friends and family, and be an oasis of peace and laughter.

I want to honor the earth and learn her secrets, listening to the stories through her animal and plant messengers.

What are you adding to the world today?

No is a complete sentence

Honoring Tanya

TanyaA year ago, I lost my best friend to cancer. I spent time leading up to, and directly after, in a state of shock trying to reconcile that at 35 I was losing someone outside of family that I was close to. In April last year my hubby and I traveled down to her memorial service. I don’t remember much of it besides the hole in my heart. I certainly have no idea what I stood up and said, having written down notes hastily in the car on the way down. Even having as much notice as I did, I waited until then to write down my thoughts. I didn’t want her death to be real. I still don’t.

I’ve been besieged by thoughts – I’m not going to say guilt because Tanya herself would smack me – that I did not do her justice when standing up and speaking for her. As a writer, I thought I could be more eloquent. As a friend, I thought I would be able to rise above my grief. In both, I crashed and burned.

Before all of you come forward to let me know that it was fine, I did fine, and that I don’t need to explain the turmoil I was in, let me say that I agree. But this was not about me; it was about someone I cared for deeply. It was about the one person that knew so much of my heart and soul that it was a bit scary.

I’m writing a year later to try and put into words the amazing person she was, and to offer tribute in a way that I couldn’t when wrapped up in grief. In typical fashion for me, I’m going to organize my observations. She would always laugh at me for my organization, and it became a joke between us. When we got together she’d always ask me what the schedule was, knowing I would have some rough outline of what we were going to do even if I tried not to. It was the same way with our writing – she would ramble and go down windy paths of description, and I would lovingly suggest an outline to keep her on track.

Tanya was:

A writer with heart.
She didn’t hold anything back. Every interaction in her stories and poems were heartfelt and didn’t pull any punches. She dove headlong into her story, getting wrapped up in her characters. She wrote poems so strong that they felt like a hurricane had swept through and picked up the chair you were reading in before turning it upside down.

Devoted to her husband and children.
No matter what I’ve gone through in dealing with Tanya’s death, I know that they have had it far worse than I. What I know however is that her fierce love for her family lives on. The few times I visited her home I saw evidence of how loving and kind she was, and devoted to her family’s well being. She encouraged her children to think independently and consider their options and choices. She listened and supported her husband. She kept going even when times were challenging.

An earth goddess.
Tanya lived on the shores of Lake Wyola for a reason. She loved being outdoors, planting flowers, and being barefoot. Her herbal business was a true testament to her love of the earth’s ability to connect. When she would visit me, she’d want to go sit outside first thing, or walk through the backyard and see what flowers were blooming.

A lover of dance and movement.
Tanya and I met in college, and danced together. She always leaned toward the improvisation classes, staying grounded to the earth. We often did contact improvisation together, and looking back on those moments makes me see just how much she felt the movement within her heart and body.

My best friend.
There were many people Tanya loved, many friends that she connected with. They all had special residence in her heart, and I am grateful to know just how many lives she touched.

May all of you know the love of a friend like that.Tanya and a favorite pass time

No is a complete sentence

Heartbeat Within

2014 started out as tQuiet streamhe year of motion. I set out to move forward every day, no matter how slowly I seemed to be going. I’m still working on that movement, and am definitely making progress.

Motion has taken a life of its own. I thought it was about moving forward, and it is, but it’s even more. It’s finding my moving forward. Even more than finding – life is about dancing from within, listening and moving in time with the heartbeat that flows through your body, mind, and soul.

I thought motion meant moving forward, albeit slowly, down the river where the rapids lay ahead so I could get caught up in the excitement and flow with everyone else. All that does is catch me into their waves, and as thrilling as they are, the waves will drown me. Lost in the swirling water fighting for breath and air while others are screaming their delight at the thrill of the rapids. It’s not my rhythm. Nor am I able to be the rock that others cling to when they need support before they continue on their journey.

My life belongs down the stream that’s off the main river. The stream that is easily bypassed in favor of the adrenaline of the rapids, the congregation of other thrill seekers who belong with that pace, the highlights of the sun bouncing off from the river. I’ve always been one who lives off to the side, who stays to the edges, laughing along with those bold enough to follow down the center of the rapids yet never joining them.

Lately however, there’s a pull tugging me to quiet waters. I’ve been resisting the path. It seems counter to the excitement I’m leaving behind. Is anyone even going to notice? Am I going to be alone? How will I be able to reach others if I’m not in the center of the action?

As usual, nature and spirit tell me to hush and trust them. So I start gliding down the stream, leaving the sparkle and mirth of the main river behind. Cool air gently swirls around my shoulders, and voices from the river are hushed. The sunlight dims, filtered through the trees. I reach the pond my heartbeat has directed me to, finding quiet reflection.

Wait, I say to the spirit guides. How will others find me? I’m not part of the action. I don’t know how to share my stories, my thoughts, my dreams with those that need to hear them if I’m off a path they can’t see.

Feel your heartbeat, they reply through the soft gurgle of water from the stream, the birdsong in the trees, the rustle of leaves. Feel your rhythm. Dance your song. Those that need it will be pulled down the stream and will find you.

No is a complete sentence

2014 Year of Motion

wooded pathwayMotion. Movement. Momentum.

Simple words, simple context. So very challenging to bring to fruition.

I’ve finally realized that I’ll never be the extroverted revolutionaries and inspiration gurus that I follow. They’re charismatic. They lead and others automatically follow. They speak and the audience quiets down to listen.

I’m. Not. Them. There – I said it out loud. While I know I have gifts that I can share with the world, and I will, I had to take some time to figure out how to do it my way. One that doesn’t involve jumping off a cliff and knowing the crowd will catch me.

I’m an introvert. I spend my time quietly contemplating life and its mysteries. I enjoy being alone or with a few close friends. I love following my mind to see where it will lead, what stories or dreams or problems to solve each day.

And I’m stuck. For the longest time I thought there were two ways of proceeding – either taking a flying leap of faith, or staying still. Those were the only choices. The leap of faith was too much. Remaining still? Well, that’s not entirely working. There’s an actual third option. Just start moving.

Motion. It fits me. It feels good. Movement doesn’t have to be large. It can be small, slow, graceful. The word warms me like a blanket straight from the dryer. So that’s my word for 2014. Motion.

Where do I hope the word will lead me? I’m not sure. All I know is that I’ll be working this year on clearing out stagnation from my life and allowing new movement to fill me. Acupuncture to remove stagnation, Feng Shui to help remove the stuck energy in the objects surrounding me, physical movement to wake my body, and a gentle renewal to spark the creativity within.

I don’t want to focus on being stuck. I’ve spent too much time doing that. I just want to move forward, however slowly, and see if simply starting gets me further along than standing and looking over the cliff at the view that is for me, only meant to be admired. I have a quieter path to wander.

“Forest Lane image courtesy of dan / FreeDigitalPhotos.net”.