Posted in General Interest

Moshe’s House in Space, flash fiction and photography by Michael Dickel, artwork by Moshe Dickel

Author’s note: Sometimes, our children tell us things that they see or know, and we don’t have faith in our children’s senses. This is speculative fiction about climate change that suggests the children might yet show us a way, even if it is too late for us. This flash fiction appeared in The BeZine July 15, 2016. A somewhat different version of it originally appeared on Fragments of Michael Dickel (now called Meta/ Phor(e) /Play).
Ark-2 Digital Art from photos and sidewalk chalk Ark-2
Digital Art from photos and sidewalk chalk (photographed)
©2014 Michael Dickel

Moshe’s House in Space

Before, no sand swept through, no water splashed—a beach at driving distance, yes, but a long, long walk away. Before the three-year old’s stories, which I only half listened to: he was born in clouds before dinosaurs were alive; he died; “But now,” he said, “I’m becoming alive again.”

I thought a story he told me one morning came from his dreams.

He knew a dinosaur, he told me, with bright blue feathers in the day. At night it turned wooly and gray, to keep warm. The dinosaur had a name, Pollaydowen.

I thought, what an amazing imagination my three-year old son has, what colorful dreams.

He had other stories, about his house in space and all of the animals that lived there with him, a farm he had at this house. He went on and on with details—listing every animal we saw at the zoo, on farm visits, in books, on videos, on the internet; listing all of the plants and flowers he had heard of; listing creatures great and small in his lakes and seas.

How did he know all of them?

He insisted we should visit his house in space.

Then changes came suddenly, not slowly, as even the most pessimistic predictions had held. One day, news report said the sea covered beaches even at the lowest tides. The next week, waves washed across roads. Houses washed away. Whole neighborhoods of people could barely evacuate before the surf swallowed the land and their belongings.

The water washed sand over everything. The ozone layer shredded. Paint bubbled and peeled on cars, houses, government buildings. Everything and everyone aged.

Soon, sand dunes blew across the road in front of our house. The house looked like fifty years of neglect had settled in on it over the past few weeks.

That last day, my wife and I heard my son speaking in his room. And we heard another voice.

We went in. A bright blue flash turned toward us.

“We have to go,” my three-year old calmly explained, “now.”

“These sands end time here, the last to flow through the hour-glass,” the blue lizard-creature, Pollaydowen, added.

As we left the house, we trekked through hills of sand.

We returned once, to see what had happened.

I left this note for you who might find it, scratched in the walls, just in case anyone remains. We have an ark.

Photo ©2014 Michael Dickel
Photo ©2014 Michael Dickel

 

Posted in Environment/Deep Ecology/Climate Change

Healing Garden, photography by Denise Fletcher

© 2019, Denise Fletcher


“Odd as I am sure it will appear to some, I can think of no better form of personal involvement in the cure of the environment than that of gardening. A person who is growing a garden, if he is growing it organically, is improving a piece of the world. He is producing something to eat, which makes him somewhat independent of the grocery business, but he is also enlarging, for himself, the meaning of food and the pleasure of eating.” Wendell Berry, The Art of the Commonplace: The Agrarian Essays

Posted in General Interest, Peace & Justice

The Collapse of the Towers

800px-September_11_2001_just_collapsed

O God! O God! that it were possible
To undo things done; to call back yesterday
That Time could turn up his swift sandy glass,
To untell the days, and to redeem these hours.

— Thomas Heywood (1574?-1641), A Woman Killed with Kindness (Act 4, Sc. 6)

Photograph courtesy of Wally Gobetz under CC BY 2.0 license.

Posted in Essay, Photography/Photographer, Terri Stewart

Sacred Space in Rest

I am interrupting my series on Sacred Space in the Body. I wish I could say that it was for a lofty reason, but the truth of the matter is that I wrote a sermon that took all the words out of my body and left me with nothing! And this is a beautiful post about resting and sabbath that I co-created with my FB friend and photographer, Tom Ganner. Originally published at BeguineAgain.com. I’ll be back on track with Sacred Space in the Elder Body next week.

Today’s theme of sacred space in rest is offered by photographer Tom Ganner. Tom is a photographer from Haines, Alaska. I met him last year when I went on a cruise. He toured us around Haines to all the “photography” spots. He was so gracious! I encourage you to look at his photography (http://www.timenspace.net/) and if you are in the area, take his tour!

“Rest is not idleness, and to lie sometimes on the grass under trees on a summer’s day, listening to the murmur of the water, or watching the clouds float across the sky, is by no means a waste of time.” 
― John Lubbock, The Use Of Life
The high point of my summer has been two weeks with my grandson. I regret I have to take him down to Juneau today to return him home to Colorado. He says he wants to come back next year.  Photo created up Haines Pass near Three Guardsmen. — with Oliver in Haines, AK.
The high point of my summer has been two weeks with my grandson. I regret I have to take him down to Juneau today to return him home to Colorado. He says he wants to come back next year. Photo created up Haines Pass near Three Guardsmen. — with Oliver in Haines, AK.
“When we live without listening to the timing of things, when we live and work in twenty-four-hour shifts without rest – we are on war time, mobilized for battle. Yes, we are strong and capable people, we can work without stopping, faster and faster, electric lights making artificial day so the whole machine can labor without ceasing. But remember: No living thing lives like this. There are greater rhythms, seasons and hormonal cycles and sunsets and moonrises and great movements of seas and stars. We are part of the creation story, subject to all its laws and rhythms.” 
― Wayne Muller, Sabbath: Finding Rest, Renewal, and Delight in Our Busy Lives
Another ho-hum day in paradise with grandson Oliver at David's Cove. — in Haines, AK.
Another ho-hum day in paradise with grandson Oliver at David’s Cove. — in Haines, AK.
“The meaning of the Sabbath is to celebrate time rather than space. Six days a week we live under the tyranny of things of space; on the Sabbath we try to become attuned to holiness in time. It is a day on which we are called upon to share in what is eternal in time, to turn from the results of creation to the mystery of creation; from the world of creation to the creation of the world.” 
― Abraham Joshua Heschel, The Sabbath
(c) Photos, Tom Ganner, All Rights Reserved
(c) Essay, Terri Stewart, Creative Commons (BY-NC)
terrisignoffblog

 

 

Posted in General Interest, Nature, Photography/Photographer

May 21, 2014

To help us continue our close of interNational Photography Month, what could be better than this lovely iris and poetic musing from Marilynn Mair, mandlinist, bandolimist, writer, photographer and wannabe Brasileira? Marilynn is Professor of Music at Roger Williams University in Bristol, Rhode Island. In some circles she is known as the First Lady of Mandolin.

Posted in Photography/Photographer, Priscilla Galasso, Wordless Wednesday

interNational Photography Month: Wordless Wednesday

“A picture is worth a thousand words.”  So said sources from the early 20th century, and advertising and marketing departments were quick to adopt this maxim.  Images became icons; symbols got recognition and replicated themselves.  In our viral age, this happens in a nanosecond.  We are bombarded with so many images in a day that we simply filter out most of them.  Junk mail, pop-ups, video clips and trademarks pass in and out of our field of vision at an alarming rate. 

When was the last time you looked at an image for more than 10 seconds?  When was the last time you stood in a museum or gallery in front of an image for more than 10 minutes?  Was that image a photograph? 

Suppose we create a virtual photographic museum here on Bardo.  Share with us a photo that you have taken that will draw us into some full minutes of contemplative focus.  It may be a photograph that tells an entire story in itself.  It may be a place to which we’re drawn, compelled to step into the frame.  It may be a portrait of a face that speaks volumes of stories.  (What’s interesting to note is that we, like infants, will look long into the faces of people, especially those to whom we feel strongly connected.) Perhaps one of these photographs will inspire a story or essay in the writers amongst us for a future time….for now, let it be wordless.  Here are some from my collection to “prime the pump”.

 

YOU ARE INVITED TO SHARE YOUR PHOTOGRAPHS WITH US.

PLEASE LINK THEM TO THIS SITE USING MISTER LINKY BELOW

OR LEAVE THE LINK IN THE COMMENTS SECTION

THE LINK WILL STAY OPEN FOR 72 HOURS AND PRISCILLA WILL VISIT AND COMMENT

WE HOPE YOU WILL ALSO VISIT ONE ANOTHER TO COMMENT AND ENCOURAGE

004PRISCILLA GALASSO ~ started her blog at scillagrace.com to mark the beginning of her fiftieth year. Born to summer and given a name that means ‘ancient’, her travel through seasons of time and landscape has inspired her to create visual and verbal souvenirs of her journey.

Currently living in Wisconsin, she considers herself a lifelong learner and educator. She gives private voice lessons, is employed by two different museums and runs a business (Scholar & Poet Books, via eBay and ABE Books) with her partner, Steve.

Posted in Essay, General Interest, Priscilla Galasso

I Love My Mom

This morning I got an e-mail from her titled “catching up on the blogs”.  I felt her heart bubbling over like she had just emerged from an afternoon reading a favorite novel.  She had associations, appreciations, memories, connections to share, like her synapses were fireworks going off.  From a reader to a writer, this has got to be the highest praise.  She started off by remarking, in all caps, that there has to be a book in this somewhere and that she wants an autographed first edition.  Aw, Mom!

My mom is not a literary push over.  She has a degree in English from Radcliffe (now coed with Harvard).  She devours books regularly and always has.  Her typical posture these days is sitting in her high-backed rocker with knitting in hand, book strapped in on her reading stand, mind and fingers flying.  She used to hide away in her bedroom with a bag of snacks and emerge an hour or so later with renewed energy to tackle her household obligations, sporting a kind of secret glow.  Get her talking about one of her recent historical sagas, and she will enthusiastically engage for hours!  I love seeing her pull thoughts that have been carefully laid aside like unmatched socks and bundle them together with a flourish of discovery and pride. 

She recently told me that her doctor mentioned her good prospects for living another 20 years.  That would make her 97; she wasn’t sure she’d want to live that long.  But think of all the books you could still read!  Or that could be read to you, if the cataracts cause the eyes to fail.  I can still hear my father’s voice reading to her behind the bedroom door.  His partnership to her intellectually was so rich, until Alzheimer’s whittled his brain away.  I wonder if she feels the same phantom guilt I have in enjoying a healthy body and a sound mind after our husbands’ deaths.  Well, I suppose consciousness is a responsibility to approach with reverence.  We live, we feel, we think, we read, we make connections still.  May we both bring life and light to the world like fireworks, Mom, as long as we are able. 

© 2014, essay Priscilla Galasso, photo Dharam Kaur Khalsa.  All rights reserved

 

004PRISCILLA GALASSO ~ started her blog at scillagrace.com to mark the beginning of her fiftieth year. Born to summer and given a name that means ‘ancient’, her travel through seasons of time and landscape has inspired her to create visual and verbal souvenirs of her journey.

Currently living in Wisconsin, she considers herself a lifelong learner and educator. She gives private voice lessons, is employed by two different museums and runs a business (Scholar & Poet Books, via eBay and ABE Books) with her partner, Steve.

Posted in Corina L. Ravenscraft, Essay, find yourself, General Interest

A Day of Renewal

April showers bring May flowers, and I’m so glad! 🙂 The rains wash away the dirt and dust, and the new plants and flowers burst forth with a clean, green scent and gorgeous palette of colors!

Chicago Peace Rose from my yard
Chicago Peace Rose from my yard

Spring is a well-known time for renewal, and I recently discovered that May 4th has been designated as “Renewal Day”. Webster’s defines the word “Renewal” as:

re·new·al

noun \ri-ˈnü-əl, –ˈnyü-\

: the act of extending the period of time when something is effective or valid : the act of renewing something.

: the state of being made new, fresh, or strong again : the state of being renewed.

This can apply to countless things in life, but it is definitely life-affirming. It’s an active process, not something that just passively happens. When you think of the word “renewal”, what comes to mind? Your driver’s license? Your wedding vows? The Oil of Olay skin care product? What about renewing yourself?

The author of the book, “The Seven Habits of Highly Effective People”, Stephen Covey, says of balanced self-renewal: “Renewal is the principle–and the process-that empowers us to move on an upward spiral of growth and change, of continuous improvement.”

Image borrowed from http://www.holistic-mindbody-healing.com
Image borrowed from http://www.holistic-mindbody-healing.com

Three of the most important aspects of life that need renewing from time to time are related to self: body, mind and spirit. Like so many truths about life, there needs to be a balance of all three. Too often, we become conditioned to the routine of every day survival and forget that sense of wonder and passion we once held for life. People talk about finding your “inner child” again, and while that’s a good start, I mean the capacity to actually enjoy the life we’re given, each and every, single day. Because each day is a new chance to start over. We can renew ourselves every day!

It’s so easy to become inattentive. We neglect our bodies because we simply don’t have the time to exercise, eat right, etc., or we don’t pay attention to what we allow to enter our minds because we’re so tired that it’s just easier to veg-out. The spirit often suffers even more, unless it’s somehow made a regular part of every-day life.

  • When was the last time you felt completely at ease with and positive about your body?
  • When was the last time you were truly amazed by something or someone out in the world, or learned something new that fascinated you?
  • How about the last time that you honestly felt connected with the planet, the universe, the Divine?
Image borrowed from http://www.namaste.tv/blogs/blog/7619089-the-active-process-of-renewal.jpg
Image borrowed from http://www.namaste.tv/blogs/blog/7619089-the-active-process-of-renewal.jpg

All three (body, mind, spirit) are intricately joined, and balance between them is important. It can be hard to find the energy sometimes, to look for the things which replenish and renew us, but it’s necessary. If you’re not getting at least a little joy, happiness or even satisfaction out of life, then you’re not living, you’re existing. There’s a huge difference between the two.

So what is it that renews your body, mind and spirit? It’s different for each individual, of course, but a good place to start is to find something that evokes a positive feeling or emotion. What’s something that fuels your passion? What makes you smile? Sometimes it’s necessary to break out of your comfort zone, break out of your routine and try something new. Make a commitment to renewing yourself, even if it’s just part of you. You’ll be glad you did.

Energy and renewal

P.S. You don’t have to wait for an “official” designated “Day of Renewal” to do it. Every day you wake up is another chance to renew yourself. 😉

– Corina Ravenscraft

© 2014, essay and rose photograph, Corina Ravenscraft, All rights reserved

effecd1bf289d498b5944e37d8f4ee6fAbout dragonkatet Regarding the blog name, Dragon’s Dreams ~ The name comes from my love-affairs with both Dragons and Dreams (capital Ds). It’s another extension of who I am, a facet for expression; a place and way to reach other like-minded, creative individuals. I post a lot of poetry and images that fascinate or move me, because that’s my favorite way to view the world. I post about things important to me and the world in which we live, try to champion extra important political, societal and environmental issues, etc. Sometimes I wax philosophical, because it’s also a place where I always seem to learn about myself, too, by interacting with some of the brightest minds, souls and hearts out there. It’s all about ‘connection(s)’ and I don’t mean “net-working” with people for personal gain, but rather, the expansion of the 4 L’s: Light, Love, Laughter, Learning.

Posted in General Interest, Photography/Photographer

interNational Photography Month, join us in celebrating this art form

“When words become unclear, I shall focus with photographs. When images become inadequate, I shall be content with silence.” Ansel Adams (1902-1984), American photographer

As with interNational Poetry Month, we are recreating National Photography Month, an event sponsored by the American Photography Association, into our own event that crosses borders. This was a spur-of-the moment decision of the core team and the hope is share work, ideas, and perhaps some instruction on photography as record, story, spiritual practice/meditation and fine art. We’ll also have at least one Wordless Wednesday to allow everyone to link in their own work. While there will be quite a few posts on or including exemplary photography, there will still be posts dedicated to poetry, essay and other arts.

Annie Leibovitz by Robert Scoble under CC A 2.0 generic license
Annie Leibovitz by Robert Scoble under CC A 2.0 generic license

To begin this evening, we share a short video, So There You Go, featuring the world-renown American portrait photographer, Annie Leibovitz (b.1949).

“Born in Waterbury, Connecticut, on October 2, 1949, Leibovitz is the third of six children. She is a third-generation American whose great-grandparents were Jewish immigrants from Central and Eastern Europe. Her father’s parents had emigrated from Romania.  Her mother, Marilyn Edith, née Heit, was a modern dance instructor of Estonian Jewish heritage; her father, Samuel Leibovitz, was a lieutenant colonel in the U.S. Air Force. The family moved frequently with her father’s duty assignments, and she took her first pictures when he was stationed in the Philippines during the Vietnam War.

At Northwood High School,  she became interested in various artistic endeavors, and began to write and play music. She attended the San Francisco Art Institute, where she studied painting. For several years, she continued to develop her photography skills while working various jobs, including a stint on a kibbutz in Amir, Israel, for several months in 1969.” bio courtesy of Wikipedia

Posted in Essay, Spiritual Practice, Terri Stewart

Sacred Space in a Phrase

I think it is fair to say that most of us here are word people. I appreciate hearing fun words, seeing a well-turned phrase, being sucked into a surplus of meaning…and wonder. Today, I heard a phrase that has captured my imagination and has launched a poetic exploration along with finding an image that I thought expressed the spirit of the phrase. What is it?

The soul is such a shy creature.

That is utterly delicious to me. I hope you enjoy the following haiku and perhaps, you will offer a poetic exploration of your own in the comments! I’d love to hear your thoughts.

the soul

peeking ’round corners

stretching frail tendrils upward

such a shy creature

flower
by Terri Stewart (CC BY-NC-ND)

Post, poem, and photo, Terri Stewart (c) 2014

terriTerri Stewart ~ a member of our Core Team,  comes from an eclectic background and considers herself to be grounded in contemplation and justice. She is the Director and Founder of the Youth Chaplaincy Coalition that serves youth affected by the justice system. As a graduate of Seattle University’s School of Theology and Ministry, she earned her Master’s of Divinity and a Post-Master’s Certificate in Spiritual Direction with honors and is a rare United Methodist student in the Jesuit Honor Society, Alpha Sigma Nu. She is a contributing author to the Abingdon Worship Annual.

Her online presence is “CloakedMonk.” This speaks to her grounding in contemplative arts (photography, mandala, poetry) and the need to live it out in the world. The cloak is the disguise of normalcy as she advocates for justice and peace. You can find her at www.cloakedmonk.com,www.twitter.com/cloakedmonk, and www.facebook.com/cloakedmonk.  To reach her for conversation, send a note to cloakedmonk@outlook.com.
Posted in Charles W Martin, Photography/Photographer, poem, Poems/Poetry

my mother’s love…

copyright cwmartin 2012

sometimes
when a fever
runs high
and
i
am alone
in my bed
all my fears
swirling in my head
creating such
dread
i
would swear
i feel your gentle hands
wiping my brow
and
speaking softly
that all
will be well
and
that i
am
not
alone

Poem inspired by Soul Dipper (http://souldipper.wordpress.com/2012/01/31/love-embedded-a-mothers/)

678ad505453d5a3ff2fcb744f13dedc7-1product_thumbnail.php41V9d9sj5nL._SY344_PJlook-inside-v2,TopRight,1,0_SH20_BO1,204,203,200_CHARLES W. MARTIN (Reading Between the Minds) — earned his Ph.D. in Speech and Language Pathology with an emphasis in statistics. Throughout Charlie’s career, he maintained a devotion to the arts (literature/poetry, the theater, music and photography). Since his retirement in 2010, he has turned his full attention to poetry and photography. He publishes a poem and a photographic art piece each day at Read Between the Minds, Poetry, Photograph and Random Thoughts of Life. He is noted as a poet of social conscience. Charlie has been blogging since January 31, 2010. He has self-published a book of poetry entitled The Hawk Chronicles and will soon publish another book called A Bea in Your Bonnet: First Sting, featuring the renown Aunt Bea. In The Hawk Chronicles, Charlie provides a personification of his resident hawk with poems and photos taken over a two-year period. Charlie’s lastest book, When Spirits Touch, Dual Poetry, a collaboration with River Urke, is available through Amazon now.

Posted in Charles W Martin, Peace & Justice, Photography/Photographer, Poems/Poetry, Uncategorized

while the blind-lady danced…

while the blindlady danced

i asked
the brown bag prophet
if he’d heard
about
the new round
of
demonstrations
for justice
he said
yes
and
why don’t
you-all
go sing
another verse of
we shall overcome
with
any luck at all
you’ can
harmonize
with the voices
i’ve heard before
and let
your
blood
be washed away
from these concrete streets
of freedom
washed away
into the ocean
of history
like
those
well-intentioned folks
now rotting
in their graves
with
copper pennies
as their only reward
and
please
don’t bother me
with your
these things
take
time
bull
i ain’t got time
i got
this corner
and you
got
nothing

Charles W. Martin

© 2013, poem and illustration, Charles W. Martin, All rights reserved

.
678ad505453d5a3ff2fcb744f13dedc7-1product_thumbnail.phpCHARLES W. MARTIN (Reading Between the Minds) — earned his Ph.D. in Speech and Language Pathology with an emphasis in statistics.  Throughout Charlie’s career, he maintained a devotion to the arts (literature/poetry, the theater, music and photography).  Since his retirement in 2010, he has turned his full attention to poetry and photography. He publishes a poem and a photographic art piece each day at Read Between the Minds, Poetry, Photograph and Random Thoughts of Life. He is noted as a poet of social conscience. Charlie has been blogging since January 31, 2010. He has self-published a book of poetry entitled The Hawk Chronicles  and will soon publish another book called A Bea in Your Bonnet: First Sting, featuring the renown Aunt Bea. In The Hawk Chronicles, Charlie provides a personification of his resident hawk with poems and photos taken over a two-year period.

Posted in Charles W Martin, Photography/Photographer, Poems/Poetry

nomenclature…

nomenclature

aunt bea
said
i’ve figured out
why people
don’t believe in
global warming
it’s got
the wrong
name
people see
and
hear about
ice floes into homes
superstorms
around the world
these hot
and cold
flashes of weather
make people say
you call that
global warming
we need a name
that matches the symptoms
the earth is experiencing
a term that conveys
the extremes
of the earth’s moods
and
the difficult times
ahead for
mankind
i’m recommending
global menopause
there’s a term
even a politician
will be able
to comprehend

– Charles W. Martin

© 2013, poem and illustration, Charles W. Martin, All rights reserved

This is Charlie’s first post with us as a part of our core creative team. If you missed his complete profile the other day, it is posted HERE. Jamie

678ad505453d5a3ff2fcb744f13dedc7-1CHARLES W. MARTIN, Ph.D. (Reading Between the Minds) ~ Throughout Charlie’s educationalhawk chronicles training and career in speech and language therapy, he maintained a devotion to the arts (literature/poetry, the theater, music and photography). He was a published poet before he completed his graduate work. Since his retirement in 2010, he has turned his full attention to his poetry and photography. He publishes a poem and a photographic art piece each day on his blog.  Charlie has been blogging since January 31, 2010. He is hugely popular for his poetry, his ethic, and his support of other poets and bloggers.

Recently Charlie self-published a book of poetry entitled The Hawk Chronicles and will soon publish another book called A Bea in Your Bonnet: First StingThe Hawk Chronicles is available through both Lulu and Amazon. In The Hawk ChroniclesCharlie provides a personification of his resident hawk with poems and photos taken over a two year period. By invitation Charlie has shown his photographs in local businesses that display the works of outstanding artists.

Posted in Photography/Photographer

Divine Look

This lovely photo and message from Ajaytao says it all.