Saturday, February 28, 2009

Homesick/Sick at Home

I don’t like being sick in someone else’s space. I’d rather be home and in my own bed, on my own couch through the day, eating my own food and taking the medicines I had made earlier in the summer season.
I was sitting in my sister Kathy’s room, shivering in the air conditioning, my forehead hot, my throat sore. I still had ten days left of a summer vacation. I knew when I walked out of her bedroom (the warmest room in the house), the temperature would be at least ten to twenty degrees cooler, so I wrapped myself in a blanket and stayed curled up on her bed.
As I lay there, I thought about my options. My feverish brain flitted back and forth between several, over and over.
Finally, I got up from the bed, got my wallet out of my day pack in the guest bedroom, and went to the phone. Before I picked it up to call the airlines, I told Kathy of my plan. I could see the disappointment all over her face, yet she nodded her understanding.
I called the airlines, changed my flight to the next day and put the charges on my credit card. I called the car rental and told them I was bringing the car back in an hour and canceling the ten-day contract.
Then I called the friends I had planned to see over the next week and a half, listening to their dismay. It had been three years since I had been back to that part of Jersey to those close old friends.
I returned to Kathy’s bedroom, wrapped myself back into the blanket and dreamt of the organic chicken soup in my freezer at home and the Echinacea I had grown and made into a tincture several months before. I was so ready to go home.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

5 Words ~~ Haiku, matter, topic, tea, heard

Haiku is an ancient Japanese form of poetry. With an English influence, it is a three line poem, typically with a “5 - 7 - 5” syllable pattern; concentrated and succinct to capture the essence of a precise topic. If you get technical, there are many more rules to writing Haiku, but as I set here, I am thinking that communication is hard enough without putting extra rules around it. So few words, so much to say; fathers to daughters, sisters to brothers, man to woman. What an adventure.

Tonight is the Academy Awards ceremonies. A night of celebrating the visual form of communication. I look forward to snuggling into the couch and watching movie stars walk down the red carpet, hoping this night to win their Oscar. As I finish cleaning my house and doing the dishes dressed in ten year old sweats, it will be a riot to see what the rich and famous people are wearing. One of those dresses could probably pay off my mortgage. I heard Hugh Jackman, the host of this years event, say there will be a twist this year. It doesn’t really matter to me, just watching him for a few hours will brighten up my evening. Maybe I will put a shot of brandy into my tea and totally relax into the evening.

So handsome a man
Is Hugh Jackman the actor;
God bless Australia.

* annette

Wednesday, February 25, 2009


Word exercise: Haiku, Matter, Tea, Heard

Aster heard the haiku and knew something had dislodged in her brain. What tugged at her was the mysterious nature of its workings. Was this the mystery of words woven into shapes not normally seen? Her mother had taught her to be open in places where many others might have structured fear. It left an indelible print on the way her brain was wired. She knew this but she didn’t understand the inner nature of the mechanics of untying strings of coagulating matter. Could anyone?

Fallen wood
dark, damp moss
a world within whorls

Sipping tea she let the words settle between the spaces in her cells. Calling forward a way of knowing outside of her mind a smile reached through to greet her inquiry. Some understandings are not meant to be linear but are meant to linger.

Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Poem - Turtle Mama

She came out of the water at a slow pace,
But with great determination

A movement as old as time, her ancient
Shell protecting her

Slowly, turning around, facing the water,
She begins to dig, powerful moves
Emptying the sand from underneath
Large enough to hold her many eggs.

A beauteous call of a primitive state of
Existence is happening
Before my eyes.

I feel myself intruding on this most
Spectacular of nature’s events.

Huge, wet, thick tears begin to stream from
Her eyes
The tears, a reminder, an awakening of the
Power of the moment.

Is she in pain?
Are they tears of joy?
Maybe her tears are announcing the
Magnificence of this watery process.

An age-old phenomena,
Coming from the water,
Shedding water,
Returning to the water,
The ultimate feminine in action.

And to strongly signify this essential character of
Femininity, she carefully covers the eggs
With sand before she returns,
Leaving a part of herself safe and warm,
Entrusting the earth with the embracing care
Of what she’s leaving behind.

Monday, February 23, 2009

Four Words Made into a Fantasy

The words: art show eight driving emptiness

There were eight of us, crammed into the car. It was illegal of course, now that we were supposed to wear seat belts. But, oh so wantonly fun. I was sitting on Barack’s lap as we were driving to the art show, passing a joint from hand to hand. By the time we opened our doors and we piled out, we were accompanied by billowing smoke, deliciously high, our senses tuned to a wide range of frequencies and the munchies underlined the emptiness of my stomach.

With Barack’s arm around my waist, he steered me towards the door of the art gallery, directly towards the food table. He turned and beamed his big smile at me as he picked up a grape and popped it into my mouth. “Keep your blood sugar up, honey. This will be a long, exciting evening.”


Sunday, February 22, 2009

The Rivulet’s Journey

I am reflecting on the journeys we take in our lives and how each path or stream that may seem divergent, feeds the river of our whole story, our purpose, our intention to take form.

I have been following one thread of my journey for many years now, since the moment, in the summer of 1970, when I was given the choice to reenter this plane of existence for a not yet formulated work to accomplish in this lifetime.

This was the beginning of, what has become the animated musical film, “The Planet Earth Presents: The Microcosmic Cartoon Shop”. What a thirty-eight year adventure this has been so far! The project, that was initiated in that “passing through” experience and then took form on Christmas Eve, is still leading my life on down this path. Its many twists and turns sometimes makes me feel that I will never reach the destination of a completed film that gets distributed worldwide. All I can do is take the next step that is in front of me.

One such step was presented to me in the summer of 2004, when I was in California, accepting an award at the Hollywood Spiritual Film Festival. I was having a working dinner with a guest mentor and he said that I needed to have an animatic of the film, so that I could give a visual presentation of my pitch. I had made a demoCD of six of the songs from the movie, but that was not enough. People wanted to see something also.

I came back to Boulder and began the process of figuring out what that meant and how to go about doing it. I eventually found an animator to work with and wrote a synopsis song just for the animatic.

The creation of this five minute promo rough animation, with my animator, arranger, colorist, performers, and tech support, is nearing completion after four and a half years. Today, at long last, I am picking up the compilation of all the pieces that have been now, put together on a DVD. Although there is still some tweaking to do, I feel that the end of this particular rivulet that is coursing into the river of the movie’s completion, is just around the bend. Then that river will flow into the ocean of humanity’s consciousness to offer its drop of delight.

Prema Rose

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Scrapbook Pages

I slide the picture of my maternal grandmother across the page, eyeing the background colors against her sepia tones. A butterfly and a few hearts, some paper lace and I’ve got a page in the scrapbook ready to go. Her picture is the oldest one in my family. Not sure who had the older ones.

More pictures are spread across the table with ribbons and paper flowers, canceled stamps, and rubber stamps and ink pad. Painted flowers and birds occupy one edge of the wooden structure, while scenes of Egypt and caves and sky-rich meadows grace another.

All are tools for the pages of this family album for my oldest son’s wedding. I want to give him a taste of his history. Most of the pictures he’ll have seen before, but a few of my earlier ancestors, he may not have.

This past week, unearthing photos from boxes and old albums has been like opening doors to old rooms. The stories in these rooms have infiltrated my dreams and I’ve been waking from situations first with one ex-husband, and then, the next night, the other. Both times they were like real experiences and I woke up feeling somewhat haunted. How much unfinished business might there still be there, I wondered throughout each day.

I choose the next picture. It one of my parent’s wedding, remembered stories leaking around the edges of my memory. Alongside I place black and white photos of my parents, each alone. My mother stands with the cigarette in hand that will lead her to emphysema years later. My father, squatting in the grass, is already balding a bit in his mid-twenties, and that process will continue through the years I get to know him.

There’s so much rich history and personal stories here, I think, as I turn to the next page, glue stick in hand.

This next page in the scrapbook is like Gene’s next page in his life. He’ll marry near his 47th birthday in a few months, into a ready-made family. Armed with this scrapbook, he’ll bring all of us along with him.


Friday, February 20, 2009


I am resistant to writing about my family. Writing about family is taboo. By my family I am referring to my children… somehow it may be okay to write about my grandchildren. I haven’t decided yet.


I still, at this distant stage in life, feel protective of my children. I am their mother. That’s reality and I take my role seriously. Always have. I go into a different state of grace when it comes to being their mother. I remember the time during the Black Power movement that surged through Trinidad in 1970 when I stopped at a traffic light.


Six young thugs surrounded my little blue Volkswagen. Shouting foul names they started rocking my car. My three babies were in the backseat. In a flash I was no longer the romantic academic pacifist had I believed myself to be. I could and would have happily killed, dismembered and eaten any one of those six misinformed young men.



So I won’t write about that today. But I know I am the mother bear forever.


Thursday, February 19, 2009

2008 ~ in Three Word Phrases

Too much wind
Not enough money
Laughing out loud
Brown Cow yogurt
Mom's 73rd birthday…
Trip to Missouri.
Love of writing
Hay bale couch
Volunteer Obama campaign
Soft kitty fur
Fun with Lakota
Horse back riding
Conversations with Gary
Walker moves home
Heart filled gratitude
First Platteville garden
Blessed corn tamales
Calm and consistent
Falling off hurts
Get back on
Buttery sugar cookies
Got bills paid
Nothing left over
Loving what is
Squash, tomatoes, beans.

* annette

Wednesday, February 18, 2009


Sunshine and warmth from within. Wake up bathing in contentment, something out of reach of words and happy for it to be so.  If a worry thought arose it would be eaten up by this way to good feeling humming inside.  Bees bathing in the sun, knowing without a thought the world is good and holy.  Just that.  Not a big story or aha, a subtle swirl of a skirt and everything looks a little different, lighter, closer to what is real outside our minds.  Mind wants to be busy and label everything.  Even swirling skirts and buzzing bees. This feeling ate up everything, even labels.  It was a little like being empty space with warm, buzzing twirling sensations that seemed to be happy about anything....didn't matter what, it just buzzed a little more, twirled or felt warm...all those words fall short of a visit I encountered with a love that doesn't fit in the hat box of thoughts or even feelings that I so often live in.


Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Phrases of 2009

Age of Aquarius
Daughter Has Cancer
Daughter Healing Herself
Unwinding Old Realities
Weaving New Ones
World Economic Challenges
Recreating New Goals
Ascension Process Happening
Appreciation Fundamental Trait
Appreciation Helps Ascension
Very Different Year
All About Love
Rather Than Power
Can We Evolve?
Only Those Open
What About Others?
Checking Out Time
Energy So Big
Crushing to Some
Others Trust Hearts
Make New World
Coming Fast Now
Letting Everything Go
All is Oneness
Love Surrounds Us

Monday, February 16, 2009

The Lottery of Enlightenment

The Guru has promised
We will all win the Lottery of Enlightenment.
In fact
We've already won!
The money is in the bank!
All we have to do is remember our access code
As we stand before the money machine of our Heart
And realize how rich we are.

--by Terra Rafael

Sunday, February 15, 2009

The Seed

The seed of my heart
Nestles in the soil of my life,
Composted and fertilized
By the breakdown of my stories.
Nourished and watered by the deluge
Of my sorrows,
Through the ages of my years
My eyes pour forth
The lubrication of my soul.

Oh, little seed,
I sing of your courage.
Not knowing why or how,
Your sprout emerges to push
The clods and hindrances away.
Gaining the strength,
Though still yet fragile,
Your journey to the sun
Continues on.

You do not even seek to know,
But accept the force of breaking through
The impenetrable barriers
Of impossibility.
You prove that,
Once again,
And evermore,
That which is to be
Will be.

How much trust
In the rightness of all things
Propels my sprout to seedling?
Opening into the love of growth,
Nothing more,
Nothing less,
To feel the moment of the blossoming.
To know I live.
This is the all in all.

Prema Rose

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Writing Prompts: art show, eight, driving, emptiness

Walking into the art show and glancing around, she saw the blue and black paintings suspended from wires. There were eight of them, some hanging from balcony railings, others from horizontal ladders attached to the dark gray ceiling.

She knew he had painted them in the last weeks of his life, before his cancer had confined him to his bed. In those days of immersion, he had been driving himself day and night, to secure the images to the canvas, to release his demons to empty himself of his past. It had been twenty years of painting for others, commissioned work he learned to despise, yet it paid the rent.

These images were his. They had come flowing down his arm, through his brush and onto the surface.

She has watched him, stopping by each day, chatting a bit, giving him moral support, bringing lunch. The both knew the end as close. He was racing against time. This was his legacy, and as the last of the paintings was finished, she could see the emptiness in him. He was done.
Within days, he took to his bed. She cared for him that last week, yet also began to arrange for this show. She knew wherever he was, he would appreciate the display, and the appreciation so far, of everyone who had visited the gallery.

She closed the door and began wandering around, surrounded by her father’s last works.

Friday, February 13, 2009

Good Things About Colorado

Mountain lions roam our back streets but our kitchen counters are ant free.
We can put a box of crackers in the pantry and it won’t mold.
We can step into our shoes without checking for poisonous spiders first.
Bears come up the creek bed in spring to poop in our garden but our dogs don’t get fleas or worms.
Dog poop if left to fry in the sun will dry up on a summer’s day.
Prairie dogs build cities around us but rats stick to the creek and dumpsters. This is big for me.
Humming birds buzz our windows in spring reminding us to put out their treats, then they play in our gardens all summer.
It is rarely foggy in Colorado.
While most folks east of Colorado freeze from November to May many of us have ample opportunity to get a sun tan in January.
Snow storms drop big loads of snow but it melts in a day or two.
People in Colorado know how to drive in blizzards without a panic.
The sun shines and the sky is true blue!


Thursday, February 12, 2009

Prompt: 4 show, eight, driving, emptiness

It is eight in the morning and I am on my first cup of coffee. The sun streams through my kitchen window as I ransack the fridge to prepare an omelet to fill the interior emptiness.
In a few short hours I will be meeting with my friends. My girlfriends and I have a very pleasant afternoon planned. We will be driving to Golden for a glass of champagne beside the stream before strolling over the bridge to browse through a newly opened art show.

I anticipate the painted canvases and glowing sculptures as well as the people watching. I believe there will be a string quartet playing accompanied by the quiet murmurs of the browsers. Winter is finally past us, the streams are flowing and this cloudless sky promises a delightfully warm and pleasant day. One day at a time, life glides by.
This is it. This is what it is all about. I am outrageously blessed.


Wednesday, February 11, 2009

The Key

The Key (writing exercise using words: dying, encouragement, disappointed, explore)

As Laura began to explore her dreams in a more consistent manor, writing down bits and pieces of remembered ones, she felt disappointed. Her grandmother told her she would find a key to what she was looking for. But after four months of diligent work only one dream stood-out as eminent. It was a carefully executed accent of a mountain. She was so there, not watching but actually climbing, scaling steep surfaces, exerting herself more than she ever thought possible. Clearly this was a physical challenge along with a mental one, especially after one of her essential tools jettison over a ledge and she had to remain calm. The consistent feeling was long periods of extreme effort giving way to moments of deep satisfaction and an almost pleasant exhaustion. Upon awaking from this dream, she couldn’t remember if she actually summated but she was left felling an inner glow, like all was right with everything on such a deep deep level. Her first thought after recalling the dream and the feeling was that this sense of “all is right” is imminent in her life. But that was three months ago and she was needing encouragement if she was to continue to be a literati of her dreams and find a key.

The whole notion seemed outlandish when granny first said it. But she loved her grandmother and thought she’d give it the effort it deserved. And effort it was, daily, every morning and sometimes even in the middle of the night after a bathroom stop. She might just remember a face, a scene, a name, and following the promise she made to herself, “no matter what, if I remember something, whenever and wherever, I will write it down.”
She thought she would visit her grandmother this weekend to see if she could be relieved of her duties. Not that writing in a dream journal was duty or that she really needed her grandmothers permission to stop but somehow she did.
She put her dream journal in her purse along with snacks for the hour or so ride. As she drove she found herself thinking about what exactly she wanted to discuss with her grandmother. She realized how much she had accomplished over the four months in fulfilling her promise to herself in recording every dream. She’d been so distracted with looking for the key that she dismissed the large achievement of following through with her promise to herself. She started to feel good about it and realized she was dying to tell her grandmother about her sincere efforts, having not shared this with a soul.

As her grandmother opened the door and her arms, with all the smells of her warm home and life surrounding her, Laura realized she already had slices of “All is right with the world” and that maybe that was “the Key” her grandmother had sent her off to find.


Tuesday, February 10, 2009

Phrases of 2008

Arizona Road Trip

Riding with Conservative

Aiding Sick Friend

New Mexico Play

Seed Started Tomatoes

Grandchildren Road Trips

Keep Dropping Worry

Banged Head Hard

Passing Obama Words

Heart Rendering Election

Celebrating Obama Victory

Stitched Rag Doll

Worldly Horrors Abound

Playful Intermittent Phases

Healthy Eyes See

Computer Accomplishments Gradual

Learning Electronics Overwhelming

Writing Never Stopped

Writing Feeds Creativity


Monday, February 9, 2009

Not Swimming with Dolphins

Dolphins leap through my subconscious. Maybe it is their singing, just beneath the surface, that calls me over and over to the ocean.

When my daughter, a watery woman-child, was conceived, I saw a vision of two dolphins, side by side, playfully clearing the water together and re-entering in one splash.

Visiting Florida’s SeaWorld, I watched the captive dolphins pacing in their relatively little pool. My stepson got to pet one. Martyrs for their race, they let humans fall in love with them, feel close to them, and so maybe humans will do what they can to quit ruining their watery world.

Later, standing on the beach, I waved at a wild pod jumping in the distance, skirting the shoreline.

In Mexico there are dolphin “adventures” where, for a substantial fee, you can be in the pool with them. “Certified Humane Treatment.” Yes, circuses & prisons say they’re humane too. You can get a kiss from a dolphin, ride on its back and enjoy various other tricks. Each time I’ve been there my wish to be with the dolphins crashed on the rocks of their debasement.

Then, on the Big Island, while kayaking to snorkel in Kealakekua Bay, we were paddling in the midst of a pod in the wild. Some other kayakers had already jumped into the water to get closer. But that wish to be closer was crashing again. I didn’t want to be part of a pack of paparazzi, invading their space. The others reported up to a dozen dolphins, including four babies.

I rocked gently in the boat and watched them skim up for air in groups of 3 or 4. Their sleek movements cut the water cleanly. I was the only one who didn’t get out of my boat. I told myself, “If they want me to come in with them, they’ll swim in front of my boat.” They didn’t. That crashing of my wish to know them against my wish to avoid intruding on them hurt my heart.

Maybe someday they will come to me.

--by Terra Rafael

Sunday, February 8, 2009


You speak to me of longing,
I say, longing is the impetus
That keeps my feet taking one step more
Upon the path of Truth.

Oh, let my heart become ablaze with longing
So that all that I think I am may burn up.
Then let the winds of Truth
Lift and blow my ashes
To the infinite spaces of the Universe.

Prema Rose

Saturday, February 7, 2009

Prompt: 4 show, eight, driving, emptiness

Walking into the art show and glancing around, she saw the blue and black paintings suspended from wires. There were eight of them, some hanging from balcony railings, others from horizontal ladders attached to the dark gray ceiling.

She knew he had painted them in the last weeks of his life, before his cancer had confined him to his bed. In those days of immersion, he had been driving himself day and night, to secure the images to the canvas, to release his demons to empty himself of his past. It had been twenty years of painting for others, commissioned work he learned to despise, yet it paid the rent.

These images were his. They had come flowing down his arm, through his brush and onto the surface.

She has watched him, stopping by each day, chatting a bit, giving him moral support, bringing lunch. The both knew the end as close. He was racing against time. This was his legacy, and as the last of the paintings was finished, she could see the emptiness in him. He was done.
Within days, he took to his bed. She cared for him that last week, yet also began to arrange for this show. She knew wherever he was, he would appreciate the display, and the appreciation so far, of everyone who had visited the gallery.

She closed the door and began wandering around, surrounded by her father’s last works.

Thursday, February 5, 2009

Laura, Under a Bridge

When my girlfriend picked me up at the Park & Ride as we carpooled to Denver to volunteer at the National Western Stock Show, I noticed another woman in her car. Kay came running around to my car door to explain. On a calculated whim, she had picked up this gal who was hitchhiking and wanted to know if I was okay with taking her to Denver. “If not, she’s prepared to get out here. But, we’ve been talking and I think she’s okay,” Kay said “and it is just so damned cold out.” I looked over and saw a round faced Indian woman wearing a heavy coat and carrying a big back pack. Memories of my own hitchhiking days flashed quickly across my inner screen and I said “Well, it looks like you made it this far. I’m good with it.”

I tried to get into the back seat. If safety became an issue, I would rather have this woman sitting in front of me, than behind. But she was already taking possession of the back seat saying, “No, no, you set up front with your friend. I’m okay back here.”

We talked on the trip down. Her name was Laura. She lives under a bridge near downtown Denver with her boyfriend and others. She told us she has two daughters in Arizona whom she hasn’t seen or heard from in along time. “My daughters have my address but I don’t have theirs. I can’t go visit them or nothing.” She sounded tired, mad and sad.

“How do they keep in touch if you don’t have an address?” asked Kay.

"Well, the mission in the downtown area, they let us use their address. We can go there.”

I turned in my seat and asked her how she got so far north of Denver. Her face was clean but kind of puffy and she had a black eye. I recognized the smell of someone who has been drinking so long that the stench of stale alcohol was seeping out her pores. She smiled at me and I smiled back.

“I’m an alcoholic. I will admit that, but I’m not a drug-ey. This guy drove by and offered me a ride, and I was cold so I got in his car. We was driving around and we bought some whiskey and we was drinking that and smoking some pot and stuff. Next thing I know I look around and I know that I’m not in Denver anymore. He says he has a house in Loveland and we’re going there. At his house we drank some more and other people were there and there were drugs and stuff. And then, all of a sudden the cops came busting in and arresting everybody. And I am telling them that I don’t even know these people, I just want to go home to Denver. This guy, he tells them that what I am saying is true, that he just picked me up in Denver and he don’t even know who I am. They took me to a shelter to spend the night and they were gonna put me on a bus or something, but I had to get out of there. My boyfriend is gonna be worried. I just want to get home.”

That was the fastest forty minute trip to Denver that I have ever made. She told us how she panhandles for a living. Sometimes she makes street art with another friend and they sell those. Frank talk, no excuses. We told her that we were heading down because we had signed up to volunteer on this day. She told us that she likes horses and grew up with them on the reservation. As we approach our destination and get to an intersection where we would turn away from downtown, Laura thanked us warmly, collected her stuff and bustled out of the car.

Kay and I found our parking lot and headed into a warm building filled with cowboys and horses. We were both glad that she had picked up Laura; it was a peak into another human being’s reality. Both Kay and her husband have been laid off recently and money has been tight in my house for the last several years. Life feels very challenging for us. Many years ago I was consumed with fear at the thought of being “a bag lady”. Really, we’re talking therapy. I was scared to death.

And here she is. Laura, who lives under a bridge forty minutes from my house; who collects things other people throw away, makes art of it and sells them to buy whiskey and food. I suppose she headed off to her bridge to find her boyfriend. I hope that he is happy to see her and he believes her story. I forgot to ask her how she got her black eye.

* annette

Wednesday, February 4, 2009


Golden light pours in,
feathered friends eat in delight.
The various pines watch over
as earth opens one eye
stretches her arms widely
And readies for another day.

Crisp early autumn air
mixes with sundrops
to warm and cool evenly,
to embrace and invigorate.
Face forward to greet these
masters of light and ether.

Enter that which observes all,
present to this mornings celebrations.
Drinking in the abundance
of each wrapped moment
Breaking bread with the unseen
hand that offers only grace.


Tuesday, February 3, 2009

Prose - Communication

Write about snippets of conversations, the facilitator said. The more I thought about the conversations of the past weeks, the more I realized there is a lack of words being said.
This lack of words hit me like a brick in the movie, The Reader. How painful our lives can be when words know our feelings, and yet don’t come forth. How dull and boring of us not to be able to express what is in our minds and hearts. So many depths and complexities to this comment on human nature. A life could have been saved, twice, in this true story if only the two people involved could have spoken.
When I had laser surgery for glaucoma recently, the doctor did his technical work, but there again, he didn’t express any words that would have saved me a lot of discomfort. Most doctors are only technicians. They are few and far between, those who can express care and especially in relationship to the whole being. Frustration abounds, between doctor and patient.
That same frustration expands when I talk to my old friend who’s been a client for thirty years. Once we were lovers, briefly. A boundary crossed that’s never truly been resolved. There is love between us, maybe its from being friends for so long. He’s like the male character in The Reader, its very difficult for him to share his feelings. Maybe I’m the female character who has too much pride to let my love show, for fear of crossing a boundary again. I always fantasize about the conversations we will have. This past week after his session I said we needed to play, create fun in our lives. Of course he always has responsibilities first, being the CEO of a successful company. But after that we could go to dinner or on a hike, he added. No joy, no feeling whatsoever. And, it will probably never happen. It must be this old niggling past life we had together, we’re both aware of our deep spiritual connection, that keeps me hooked in, at least. I feel our lesson is learning to communicate. But we keep holding tightly to the only things we know, protection of the heart.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Resting in Peace

Aggie was surely dying. I stopped by her bedside. I’d come to love her while working at the Reserve, where late-stage dementia patients live. When I’d visited her a few days ago, she’d been sleeping deeply. I let her rest without disturbing her peace.

This time the skin over her bones had become so thin to be almost transparent. Her fingernails were bluish. She was still peaceful. Her angel hair was so soft, so purely white. It glowed, a halo around her skull. Her large, deaf ears did not hear, although usually hearing is the last sense to leave. Her hearing had left even before I met her six months ago. She was beautiful in her surrender and peace, bringing tears to my eyes.

My eyes won’t see her working a puzzle for an hour anymore. My ears won’t hear her yell “Kick it!” when a player dozes instead of moving the ball during our circle kickball games. My hands won’t smooth that soft, soft hair anymore, or massage her big boned hands. My heart won’t feel her love when she bursts into her wide and generous smile anymore.

I whispered to her soul what her ears might not hear,”If I don’t see you here again Agnes, I’ll know you are in a better place.”

She died the next morning.

--by Terra Rafael

Sunday, February 1, 2009

Transient Stability: An Oxymoron

Is it possible to be transient and still have stability at the same time? Since everything is always changing, when one looks for any real stability for any length of time, it is impossible to find. As the tides of the ocean or the phases of the moon, no moment is ever the same as the any other. One can have a sense of stability over a long period of time and some changes are almost imperceptible to our ordinary awareness. The only thing that one can count on is the changing nature of life itself.

But what is there behind the movement of events? Is there something that is eternally still and ever present? This question has been a driving force for all ages. Each present moment brings the possibility of experiencing and knowing that space that is here and always Now.

The dilemma is that we are so habituated to the movement of our minds, that slowing down to a full stop is near impossible, unless one takes the time to be still. This has occurred to me several times in a state of deep meditation. Each time has been remarkable in, its own way. The present moment has been suspended in encapsulated space, there only as the present moment. Once time stopped between the frames of the movie of the mind. The moment included half of what was just before it and half of what was coming up in the Now. I could not make the moment move forward. It was static.

From these experiences, I learned that the present moment is always here. This is the only thing that is stable, truly stable. Yet, in ordinary consciousness, we cannot perceive these isolated moments and so, it appears to us to be transient. Thus, the oxymoron of “transient stability” exists.

Prema Rose