b&w

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I’m partial to black and white.
It’s tidy, for one, which i love.
I can think straight with black and white.
But my favourite thing about it is that it makes other things come to life.
Colours, of course, but also thoughts, ideas, faces light up within a black and white landscape.  You notice things when the stuff around them settles down.

It’s been very colourless around here lately, which is nice and polite of the weather, as it has given other things the chance to shine.

I’m thinking about honour lately.
:Living from the heart in the spirit of honouring ourselves, each other.
Stepping out of fear, reactivity.  Heart-living instead.
I’ve also been thinking about crows.  Their everywhere-ness, their genius, their memory.  How good they look against snowy backgrounds:)

What are you thinking about?

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January, Winnipeg.

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It’s minus 37 C with the windchill, arctic-like urban living, and determined and die-hard in this city, people are still walking and even smiling through the cold.

Also it’s too cold to have naked hands for more than two point five seconds, so photos are scarce.

one

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“Surely it is a privilege to reach the end still believing in something.”
-Louise Gluck

Privilege?  How about an outright miracle?  Whatever it is, i raise my cup of tea this bright, slow morning of a new year, scented still with yesterday’s smudging sage-to faith.  To a good old-fashioned reset.  And to laying to rest all that has been, with gratitude for the challenges have sculpted you into this very moment.

And to the year of all of our wildest imaginings.  Let’s fill this year up not with old business, but with the wilderness of our hearts’ wills.

(The heart knows what’s next.  A privilege and a miracle, too.)

heart-shaped

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I set the end-of-some-exams-and-finally-a-tiny-bit-more-space-in-my-day- intention to explore a little more, open up to some space for noticing, and to all-around enjoy things.  (And also to give this space a little life support.  And also to read a novel, finally.)
This heart-shaped deer print on a plain old residential street was my first official treat in said exploration.
How did it get there?  How would deer have been wandering up the sidewalk deep in the bowels of st. b?   And aren’t we lucky for the magic of the questions?

 

anachronism

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The in-betweens are so weird.

I love that just when the mind starts to wrap its little self around the present moment, a belated flock of geese that missed the memo about winter glides in and settles onto the mostly frozen river.  I love that you can’t be too sure; that there might be still one more bright orange fall leaf sitting on top of the deep snow when everything else is winter black and white, or one weirdo wearing shorts in already-almost december, or one leftover flock that, for whatever reason, has not yet gone.

Just that.  And warm wishes, friend.

Diwali days of autumn

golden

In the soft aftermath of diwali, the festival of light and celebration of triumph light over darkness (a pretty good holiday!), I can’t believe the good fortune that this part of the sun’s rising has been coinciding with morning walking.  I watched a seagull fly overhead, its belly lit up from the light and wondered why this city isn’t called golden instead of great.

Space

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I must confess that I have a weakness of empty places.

– Tony Hillerman

At the moment I’m busier than i like to be, but my mind is being challenged and turned over and over and rustled and woken.  In addition to my normal teaching schedule, i’m taking a couple of science classes which has become my free time, which is weird.  I’m longing for free time spent settling onto the ground, spaces in my days, and I miss photographs.
Luckily a luxurious afternoon at Beaudry Park trumped everything else for the day on Sunday and the stars aligned and the Autumn weather was perfect and the sky was spacious and bright and air got breathed and feet touched the earth more properly than they have been.

I’m happy to report that a little space on the perfectly golden prairie in Fall is still all it takes.

Another fall

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Do you feel kind of like something big is happening?
In that cold and broken but hallelujah kind of a way?
Me too.

The consistent sound of it is a light whisper and a deep moan that sighs and bellows, ‘hallelujah.’  More than once.  But not quite constantly.

The girl at the health food store yesterday told me that everyone is undergoing a hard process of transformation to move into a higher consciousness.  That sounds crazy.  And not so far off, somehow.

I love the Equinox.  Last year on this day, I was practicing 108 sun salutations in a glowing roomful of a bunch of yogis.  That is all that i remember, and an awake heart.  Fall does that.

The year before on this very day, I was at a scotch tasting and my soul had opened widely up; must have been a particularly surprising autumn breeze, and the crunching of the leaves underfoot was crispier than normal, and the baby formerly known as Mowgli was on his way to getting ready to be born, and there was a scotch tasting and the most beautiful company I have kept and I felt home, and the littlest bit of Talisker warmed me deeply like a candle-lit room, and it felt like anything was possible.

Like a layer of skin was about to be removed, or something in me was about to be switched on, whether i was ready or not.  Pure potential.
Is this the feeling of the end of a season?  A new one beginning?  Do you ever have that feeling?  Like a wind is ready to gently or not-gently nudge you if you let it?
That not letting it is an option, but that it’s a dumber option even than the scariness of letting it?

Yeah, me too.

Bring it on, Fall.

self, autumn

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These days.

This photo was taken in the midst of a giant torrential downpour in which i got caught an hour-walk from home with my rain-hating dog, on a path that was a funny choice that day, along the river, and far from any road, structure or potential shelter from a storm.

It was obvious it would rain, but I ignored it.  I wanted that river walk and anyway, a little rain never hurt.
When the sky spilled open, we were near some thin bushes along the river and though half of the leaves have blown off and there was a pretty open sky above, p and i refuged desperately into the bushes and hid out in the semi-shelter of empty autumn trees for a good while.  It was quiet and beautiful and damp.  It sounded only like rain.
It barely helped, but this too shall pass, as always, and patience is a good mantra.  So we waited and waited and got soaked and shivered and got more soaked and felt alone and felt alive and felt cleansed against our will, but necessarily I guess, by the rain, until I gave up on things passing, and forged ahead.

The surrender back into the downpour was immaculate and it felt funny to walk in that, as if i had a choice, and to watch people drenched, riding by on bikes, laughing at the sky.

We got home and dried off and I felt like i’d had a deep cry.

Leonard Cohen (happy birthday, l. cohen!) says you look good when you’re tired; you look like you could go on forever.
Thank god.
I am tired, but still alive.

beauty

Here’s what i’ve got the energy to do as far as beauty.

Walk.  See.  Breathe (usually.)
This is enough.

Beautiful things.

Birds on a wire the other bright morning, when the air was a confusing, familiar combination of crisp and smoky from farmers’ fields burning, like always a third of the way into September.
I love sparrows.

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Also, breathtakingly, this:

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And finally this just because it is so gd beautiful.

fog

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A foggy, already-Fall morning, and thick steam lifts up off the giant river that moves through this city.

We are so tiny, we little souls, and this world is so gigantic, charged, and powerful.
And it is holding us.

A remembering:  fog is beautiful.  Clarity is not an all-the-time thing.