Friday, March 11, 2016

AN INTERLUDE - Réfléchir - A New Moon

Italian Angel over 100 years old

Strange Angels

 They say that heaven is like TV
A perfect little world that doesn't really need you
And everything there is made of light
And the days keep going by 

Here they come
Here they come
 Here they come 

Laurie Anderson

Stanislaus Bouvier - Festival International Du Film, 2015

Still reveling in the mystery...
           Inscrutable and transcendent in the same moment.

There is a Sufi story where you stand in front of  a door, the door opens - you get a glimpse of heaven.  When will the door open again?  Maybe in a few seconds or a thousand years.  Are you ready to walk through the door? 

View to the Chai from bedroom window

“In the universe, there are things that are known, and things that are unknown, and in between, there are doors.
              ― William Blake

Door Knocker - Eugene Atget

San Miguel de Allende - Jennifer Butson

Door Knocker - Eugene Atget

December -  I spent the month in the woods, housesitting for a friend. I was hiding in the open - in the "sweet darkness," with Rockstar, the old dog, my heart a rookery - Keeper of Secrets, knowledge under the leaves... I was "wordless".  I made fires and listened to the rain. I kept company with the Hermit, Laurie Anderson, Van Morrison, Simon & Garfunkle, John O'Donohue:  Hello Darkness, my old friend.  I read a lot. I listened to poets. Time passed.

Hiding in full view

Rockstar & Me


is a way of staying alive. Hiding is a way of holding ourselves until we are ready to come into the light. Even hiding the truth from ourselves can be a way to come to what we need in our own necessary time. Hiding is one of the brilliant and virtuoso practices of almost every part of the natural world: the protective quiet of an icy northern landscape, the held bud of a future summer rose, the snow bound internal pulse of the hibernating bear.  Excerpted from ‘HIDING’ From CONSOLATIONS: The Solace, Nourishment and Underlying Meaning of Everyday Words.
2015 © David Whyte:

At Jodies
Jardin d'hiver - Expo Chateau de Nontron

Statue at Jodies

Hermit - Visconti Sforza

Knowledge Under the Leaves

I thought about the term "ubi consistam"  from Archimedes, "Give me a place to stand and I can move the world."  I knew where I stood, but then the world moved.  At dawn and at dusk, Rockstar and I walked in and out of the forest, chasing the fugitive light. They say Goethe's last words were "more light".  Walking on soggy leaves, I daydreamed in the half-light while Rocky listened to the higher frequencies.  Often we would find odd things on the ground:  a gold star next to a very long worm. Another time, plastic binoculars shaped like penguins. The humble tenacity of things, Adrienne Rich would have called it.  

Abbaye de Fontaine Vive

Penguin binoculars christened Heckle & Jeckle

I named the penguins, Heckle and Jeckle, after those wily magpies from Terrytoons Studio.  Jeckle had a slightly falsetto English accent, and I think Heckle sounded like he was from the Bronx.  They called each other "Chum" and "Chap", "Old Featherhead."  Cheeky freeloaders and idlers up to no good most of the time, they always outsmarted their adversaries.  Now I have them where I can keep a close eye on them.

I took a lot of hot baths...To cleanse the Face of my Spirit by self-examination,
To bathe in the waters of Life, to wash off the Not Human,
I come in Self-annihilation and the grandeur of Inspiration
- William Blake

Blake for the soul, Epsom salts for the skin.  I filled the margins of my Diary of Beauty - then couldn't read my own handwriting. 

Sunrise in Charras

Daydream transports the dreamer outside the immediate world to a world that bears the mark of infinity.  Gaston Bachelard, The Poetics of Space

Sometimes "Beauty" is shy and unexpected... 

Goats on the way to Tarot Event at Abjat-sur-Bandiat

Once you give them an apple they never forget you
On the way to Abjat-sur-Bandiat
Donkey friend near Rauzet

"I am not ashamed, afraid, or averse to tell you what Ought to be Told. I am under the direction of Messengers from Heaven, Daily & Nightly." - William Blake

Charlie in Bristol at Roger's house

Sheep in Doumerac

La Borderie

At Sunrise & at Dusk, I was betrothed to the unknown - John O'Donohue

Rockstar and I walked beneath all the phases of the Moon...To be in the Wordless
Full Moon over the village

Night Birds
XVIII La Luna - Soprafino - 19thc.Italian

The Moon & its Double

To Be in the Wordless -

We sank into L'Heure Bleu, the Blue Hour, literally and figuratively...between darkness and day, between the night of the soul and its Tibetan Buddhism, the hour before dawn is associated with the ground luminosity, or "clear light," arising at the moment of death.  It is not a light apprehended through the senses, but it is said to be the radiance of mind's true nature. Carolyn Forche, The Blue Hour

Vanishing into Indigo Clouds - Charras

The Blue Hour - Charras


I was soaked in beauty, blue wisdom, essence, the God of nature and the nature of God! Then I thought, who am I kidding?  I'm in limbo, in the "waiting room of procrastination," Sark talks about. When I arrived home, I found some paper wasps in an armoire.

Yes, that was it, I was a paper wasp!  Most of them die in the winter, except for the Queen who survives by hiding in the cracks and crevices of structures or under the bark of trees.  Therefore I must be the QUEEN. Is that what "heaven's messengers" were trying to tell me? 

This is what happens when you give them colored paper

It was getting close to Christmas

In 2012, beekeepers in France were shocked to find their bees creating blue and green honey. It turned out that the insects were collecting sugar from the shells of M&Ms at a waste processing plant nearby. The nests are pretty and durable too (and they don't melt in your mouth).   

A wave of melancholia surged through my veins as I hid in the crevices of La Borderie. Rocky tried to help. 

Rockstar in Contemplation

I consoled myself by remembering how many of the great poets, e.g. Blake, were overcome by Melancholia.  I looked at "Brainy Quote" to see what wisdom Blake had for me.  I found this:

Think in the morning.  Act in the noon.  Eat in the evening.  Sleep in the Night. 
OK, I can do that, but is Brainy Quote to be trusted?  It didn't exactly sound Blakean.  

It wasn't time to eat or sleep yet.  Who knows where the time goes...?

At Jodies
I went back to reading Piero Ferruci's "Beauty and the Soul."  He reminded me of the fragility, subjectivity and precariousness of Beauty.  It comes as a visitation.  As with a state of grace or a moment of enlightenment, it is unpredictable and easily destroyed, repressed, forgotten.  Beauty is always subjective, aside from universal masterpieces.  The aesthetic experience is vulnerable to social pressures, mood swings, the context in which it happens and the vagaries of memory.  

I needed STRENGTH, tenacity, decision making, energy and the willingness to take more risks. I turned to the La Forza card from the Italian Soprafino (very refined) deck designed by Carlo Dellarocca in 1830.  He engraved the deck on metal plates, delicately colored by hand with more than 12 colors.  This exquisite reproduction, produced by Osvaldo Menegazzi of Milan, Italy was found at a flea market in Santa Cruz by my friend Aleks - it is a treasure beyond measure. 

La Forza - Soprafino, Italian deck

Later that evening, a Buddhist priest from Boulder, Colorado contacted me for a reading.  I snapped into action, lit a candle & dropped the melancholia like a hot rock into a well -  A slight hissing, then silence.

Chinese Lanterns

  The next day I saved a bee's life...

Taking down the laundry, I found a dying Bumblebee trying to extract nectar from the daisies on my flowered underwear. What to do, what to do? I remembered a youtube video I saw of a man who saved a bee with some honey. So I put some honey in a dish with some flowers and put him into bee rehab at the Ye Olde Wishing Well. A few hours later, voila, he was revived and buzzed off into the trees. Now I hope he's "making sweet honey from my old failures."

Bee on a daisy

Ye olde Wishing Well


The Druids brought in the Mistletoe for Christmas, cut from the sacred Oak with a golden sickle.

The Druids Bringing in the Mistletoe - E.A. Hornel & George Henry, 1890

In Gaelic, the name for Starling is Druid
Christmas lunch at Domaine du Chatelard

The Harvest of Presence at the end of the year

...Whoever listens in this silence, as she listens,
will also stand opened, thoughtless, frightened
by the joy she feels, the pathway in the field
branching to a hundred more, no one has explored.
What is called in her rises from the ground
and is found in her body,
what she is given is secret even from her.

This silence is the seed in her
of everything she is
and falling through her body
to the ground from which she comes,
it finds a hidden place to grow
and rises, and flowers, in old wild places,
where the dark-edged sickle cannot go.

Excerpted From:
In RIVER FLOW: New and Selected Poems
© David Whyte and Many Rivers Press

The Song of the Lark, Jules Adolphe Breton, 1884

My Inner Harvest - Le Petit Lenormand

On the threshold of a new year, learn from the past, but kiss it goodbye. Threshold comes from "threshing", to separate the grain from the husk.  I believe in the present moment from which all else emanates, the rest is camouflage.  

I was privileged to read the Tarot, the Cartomancy cards for so many souls this past year.  Overhearing stories is like listening to people's dreams.  I dedicate this particular blog and poem to all my Anam Caras; you know who you are, but especially to Dawn/Aurora, whose story is still unfolding. And to Maria who came all the way from Catalonia for a reading about the future of her country, her language, and her place within that future.  I was able to do a reading which met her tremendous burden and destiny.  Both of us drinking from that inexhaustible fountain of wisdom in the tarot and in ourselves.

And to Alexandra, who read my blog and my ramblings during many a dark night of the soul. You have inspired me more than you can imagine.  Finally, to John O' Donohue, who said "God is Beauty" ... he embodied beauty in all its grace, elegance and eternal ways - in his presence I have felt the most alive.  "Ziran"  - to be what we are.

        FOR YOU      
I was inside your life before you were born,
presiding over your birth 
with hands that cradled your sure destiny,
as you lept eagerly over the threshold.

You took on so much (this time)
it took my breath away.

There isn't a corner of your life
I haven't watched over
Yet, you are still the great mystery to me,
which is as it should be.

I will hold you forever in the hollow of my heart,
where there are no shadows to hide from.  
         RA Martin
Expo Jardin d'hiver - Chateau de Nontron

My brother says my blogs are too long and he's right!  But I can't close out the end of the year or put the keyboard to sleep without a few highlights from the season's Fetes/Tarot events.

Voyante - Lenormand Revolution - Carrie Paris

The Joker

Sunrise, frosty morning on the way to Abjat-sur-Bandiat, following the river Bandiat, past shivering hay bales with their jackets on, Beautiful ribbon of a river, 91 km, it flows thru Haute-Vienne, Dordogne and Charante. The land was taking a rest.

Sunrise on the Bandiat

Arrival - French garcon, Claude, showing off for me. Janika with her gorgeous handmade hats, Linda, intrepid organizer for Bansang Hospital, like a Moose caught in the headlights; the table is set: $2025 raised for Bansang Hospital in Gambia.

Janika, textile artist and hat maker

Open for business, Susan brings me an Angel. Un botte de carrotes & legumes from another client, Jean-Marie gets her heart's desire. A steady parade of questions all day long, ending with Sasha and the sunset.

Pre-dawn, only the thumbnail moon to light my way to the Twilight Event - the misty village enrobed in silence; an Artisan "hewn in a wild workshop".


Artisan - Charras

St. Paul de La Roche - Fundraiser for Twilight Retirement Home for Dogs
Arrival - tarot under the mistletoe, sharing the day with Leslie, the Jordie elf, dancing with Snoopy to the fab Candy Stripes, "the embers of longing still kindled in her heart," scones & brandy butter, chicken pot pies and mince pies galore; $2,311.50 raised for les chiens. Open hearts and open pocketbooks in this magical french village.

St. Paul de La Roche

Leslie - Jordie Elf

Snoopy et Moi

Fete Noel at Aubeterre-sur-Dronne, my fourth time reading in one of my favorite villages.  Left Charras in the dark, village lights, the moon lighting our way. The alchemy of the sun-filled day. Build it and they will come...Ludovic Trarieux, Dreyfusade, pioneer of International Human Rights, presiding over the square and my Donkey Shed.

Leaving Charras

My Beloved Donkey Shed

The Village gives us the best Le Petite Dejeuner

Long day, the last reading - Warm soup from Nina/organizers while we pack up, Claude, the chocolatier, took a photo - driving home in the dark, the moon still lighting our way...Queen of Swords, compliments of Carrie Paris.

And everything there is made of light
And the days keep going by 

Here they come
Here they come
 Here they come 

In difficult times, you should always carry something beautiful in your mind - Blaise Pascal

New Moon


  1. deep sighs of satisfaction; longings and thirst quenched so deliciously. Still reveling in the mystery...
    Inscrutable and transcendent in the same moment. just almost unbearably beautiful! and non, never too long! always waiting eagerly for the newest delights on this journey. love and blessings, p

    1. Is that my dear PW? Thanks for your generous comments!!! really makes the late night doubts, tearing one's hair out, lack of sleep, all worth it. love, rudy