It Ain't Easy ...


Tuesday 27 July 2010

... getting clean.

Sometimes you don't even notice it till it's upon you.  Or part of you notices it, other parts are numb to it or in denial.  The old tapes, the old demons, the old patterns.  They jump on the back of something opportunistic and before you know it they've rushed at you and stolen your breath, their teeth bared, kid's nightmare teeth, stealing your thunder.  If you didn't know any better you'd stay right there in their jaws, believing the landscape.

The still small voice that is in the silence, that is in the midst of all music, that golden thread, you can't see it at these times.  All you can hear is the deafening roar of the old school, the feelings-without-words, the numbness, the powerlessness that is life-as-you-knew-it.  

It could almost fool you that it's real.

There's nothing to it but to go through it.  You resist this with every ounce of you, even though you know there is no other way.  There is no god coming to take it away;  the only way is right through the centre of it.

It would never make a Hollywood movie.   Or a Pente sermon.

But out the other side, if you can tear your eyes away from the giant jaws, there is peace out that other side.  There is right action and peace and space.  You know it.  You've been there before.

All it takes is mindfulness and courage.  

The more you sit in the middle of your own worst nightmares, the more you begin to understand the oneness of everything, the paper tigerness of your worst fears, the freedom that lies out the other side.  A chink, a crack to walk through, out through the other side.

Part of you doesn't even believe it's going to happen.  Part of you knows that of course it will.

Very little is linear round here :)  

Sunday Visitations


Wednesday 14 July 2010

The rainbow lorikeets sit in the shrub in the garden and call for a sunflower seed delivery.  They have two rather different sorts of conversational tone.  The first one is sweet and chirpy, talkative.  The second is screechy, almost imitative of cockatoos in its harshness.  These little buggers are territorial - even amongst each other.   A long, long stream of seeds, laid out along the railing of the decking and flung onto the ground - enough for everyone - does not stop their in- and outfighting.  They will yell at birds twice their size without a qualm.  Must be something to do with those little demonic red eyes :)
Pic by Fir002, used under a GNU free documentation license
I have a soft spot for the rosellas.  Far more timid than the lorikeets, they wait their turn, slipping in where they can.  They have the lovely soft chirps and conversational tones of the lorikeets without the screech.  When I was a second-floor flat dweller in Kew over a decade ago, I would be visited each day by a bunch of these guys.  They helped me feel grounded whilst on the second floor, even as they flew in and flew out.
Pic by Fir002, used under a GNU free documentation license
Hills-dwellers may squirm to see this bird here because cockatoos are pests.  It is hard to be amenable to a large bird who insists on eating portions of your house and who bullies the smaller birds but oh, I really do have a soft spot for these creatures.  They are so smart and they are such good listeners.  They sometimes sit on the eaves of the house and watch me as I come out the door, bobbing their head, thinking it through, missing nothing.  Their screech at dusk is cacophanous.

When I was an apprentice typesetter and our boss was away, one of my workmates brought in his pet cockatoo.  I sat working, with the excitement butterflies swimming around in delight in my stomach, with Ollie perched on my right shoulder, nibbling my ear.  These birds learn a lot and belie the term "birdbrain" at every turn.

Pic by Bloody Nick

The little kookaburra dudes have captured my heart - and the heart of a man I know who purchases mince especially to feed his gaggle of eight, who fly in from the surrounding trees to  grab a deftly-thrown portion from out of the air.  Their beaks make a most satisfying sound when they click them.

This one has been visiting for years.  Literally eats out of your hand.  Their shape is so round and satisfying, their call puts a smile on my face.

(See the eaten away parts of the decking to the left of the kookaburra?  Them's those naughty cockatoos).  
Pic mine



Tuesday 13 July 2010

I am delighted to have had bestowed upon me the "I Love Your Blog" award by the equally delightful Kimber.  Particularly edifying considering the lack of time I have spent on here lately;  it is good to know that people are still willing to read even though I'm not updating :) 

I admire strong, discovering-themselves, go-where-you-need-to-even-if-it-hurts women who will not settle for the status quo despite the pain.  Kimber is one of those and her blog is well worth the visit.

As part of this award, I am to list ten things that I love.  So here goes, in no particular order:

This Blog  Like I said just before, I've been rather tardy in my discombobulations lately.  To be honest, I've not been much minded to spend any more time on the computer than I already do.  I've ramped up my working hours several months ago, and as I am a typing slave, I can notice the extra hours I'm spending in my aching shoulders.  Sitting down and writing a blog post is sometimes the last thing I feel like doing.  Added to the extra working hours a new relationship, and this near-hermit of the past several years is finding it a challenge at times to fit everything in :)  But I haven't forgotten this blog.  I love writing here, I love the people who read here.  I only hope that they keep me in their feedreaders for when I do find my way back here more regularly :)

Tea   I come from a family of tea drinkers.  I love drinking tea.  Even in the height of summer I have to get at least a cup or two in.  I love English Breakfast,  Lady Grey, Earl Grey, peppermint,  neem, Yorkshire tea.  

I discovered yesterday the most disgusting tea that ever did be.  It is called lapsang souchong.  Tea leaves are smoked over pinewood, creating something that smells and tastes like tobacco.  An abhorrent abomination that does not deserve to be called tea.  Drink this horror at your tastebudderly peril.

Music   Nothing has the ability to transport or delight with the intensity that music does.  Can throw me back 20 years ago in an instant.  Like yesterday.  I played a best-of Pat Benatar CD to my boyfriend who hadn't heard some of these tunes since he played them himself on cassette a quarter of a century ago.  Music picks up a time, a place, with its smells, its fears and its loves and carries it in a song.  Hear it, and suddenly you're 15 again.

(PS:  Goodness me, though, Pat Benatar's lyrics are rather shabby at times.  "Anxiety, got me on the run, anxiety, destroys all the fun.  Anxiety, can't get nothing done, Anxiety, I just need someone."  Really and truly, Patricia, but I don't think finding a man is going to cure your anxiety).

Reading  The books I love best are the ones I keep putting down because I'm drifting irresistibly on a thought cloud.  Right now, I'm rereading Stephen Nachmanovitch's Free Play and drifting off just as much as I did the first time I read it.  It's a luxurious delight, even after all of these years of reading, to crack one open and sink in to someone else's thoughtful construction.

Drifting Off   It doesn't matter how busy I may get, there has to be time for daydreaming. It flows through and over my life like fluffy clouds.  If I don't allow the space, it just smokes itself in under the door anyway and I find myself drifting off at my computer.  Intellect is a beautiful thing.  There's nothing like some strenuous challenging thinking and reasoning to get me excited.  Daydreaming is the flipside of that, underrated only by those who do not understand its value.  Smooth and flowing, it gives me space in a culture that is insanely constricted.  And it's free.

The Big Round Ball Thang  Let's face it:  living in the current cultural climate that tries to drain, bore and lethargise at every turn, sometimes I am amazed that we could ever fall into those things when, folks, we are living on a giant round ball that is sitting suspended in the middle of fucking nowhere!!!  I mean, how crazy is that!  Who needs drugs?

I am enjoying the seasonal changes so much that come from living on the big round ball thang.  It's mid-July and Winter, and yeah, I'm feeling a bit fatigued, and yeah, I'm feeling a little more anxious, and yeah, I'm struggling to go to bed early as usual but oh, the sun is sitting slanted in the sky all sexy, and meanwhile all you Northern Hemisphereans are sweating into your bum cracks and gee, I love the variety that this 365-day spinfest conjures up each year.  I really do.

The Golden Thread   The golden thread tends to follow on the heels of meditating on the great round ball thang.  The longer I go on, the more the preoccupations and arguments and doctrines of religion fade into the background because it's a  pointless enterprise when there's the golden thread, the golden thread, the golden thread.  The more I go on with the golden thread, which is very old and ancient and recovering, the more I see myself in other people, other people in me, the interconnectedness of all things.  It is a saving grace, and I am becoming more whole with the experience.

(Well, with notable frequent lapsings.  I mean, how Zen are you really when all it takes is one stupid bloody inconsiderate bastard on the road in Sassafras yesterday and you lose your cool.  But hey, these things take time :)

Good Food   Still inclined to turn into the Macca's drive-thru at weak moments, but I guess really ultimately I'm a bit of a foodie.  Can't get enough of fresh, good ingredients cooked by my own hand rather than the pretend unfood row upon row in the supermarket.    Just as quick to cook one as the other.  I love cooking;  I love flying by the seat of my pants, a drip of this, a dollop of that, the enjoyment when it turns out well.  It's sort of like writing a poem that you get to eat at the end :) The only thing better than cooking good food yourself is having someone else cook it and I can still taste in my mouth the delicious Thai coconut soup from the other evening.   Love that combo of creaminess and sourness.  Yummo.

My People   I'm still in the swimming-in-each-other bliss of a new relationship.  We are spending copious amounts of time together, me and my love.  And I'm ... well, loving it.  I'm also loving the fact that I am seeing my darling cousin Andrea tomorrow and my darling friend Jane on Thursday and who needs heaps of money when you as rich as that, honey?

Thinking   Of course, there's thinking and then there's thinking.  There's thoughts and then there's ideas.  The first ones can damn near drive you mad, the ones that ride the ruts in your mind, tediously, like a million times before.  Not those.  

But ideas.  Good ideas.  Connecting ideas.  Composed of myriad thoughts that make up something new, at least in your own head.  Forming a new synapse of sorts, a connection made and understood with a golden sort of a snap.  A new way of seeing things, a turning on your ear of your previous conceptions is born.  I can ride for hours on one good idea.  

I hate rules.  The last rule of this award is to pass this on 10 bloggers .  Never forget, however, that rules are made to be broken and so if you don't want to play, feel free not to.  But I pass this award on the following blogs I love long time:  Harry, at The Business of Isness,  Kel at The X-Facta, Barbara at Barefoot Toward the Light, Tess at Anchors and Masts,  Lucy at Diamonds in the Sky With Lucy, Andrea at Cloudbusting, Mike at The Mercy Blog, Kent at Faithfully Dangerous, Barbara from Writing From the Inside Out and Anth from BlackAnth