Fitting In

I found this unpublished poem in one of my journals from last year:-

Is anyone who they say they are?
I myself assumed a name at fifteen.
Rejecting my birth name
I donned another as a mask.
Simpler,
easier that way
to fit in
but, alas, it never really worked
although I’ve tweaked it now and then
it remains
an alias,
an adopted persona.
The real me remains a mystery
even to myself some days.
The fitting in I’m yet to master.

linked to: https://earthweal.com/2021/01/15/earthweal-open-link-weekend-53/

A Woman’s Place

I’m feeling a strong urge to step away from collective ideas, ideologies and even collective creative projects right now. I’m more motivated in taking a deep dive into myself and exploring my own shadow realms. One way I am expressing this is through personal creative projects.

A while ago I purchased a packet of old photos and ephemera. When I went through them I was reminded of the old saying “A Woman’s Place is in the Home”. This led me to think about how old cultural ideas still have a unconscious psychological influence on many of us. Perhaps they are even encoded into our DNA. I am not saying all women are conflicted by old unconscious programming that is at odds with modern ideas about woman can do. I am simply using that particular saying as an example how cultural ideas become imprinted psychologically and can influence our behaviour without us being fully aware of why.

Working through this ideas I made concertina book on handmade using old photos and ephemera. This is a work in progress for more bits of ephemera will be added as I come across tbem.

The Council of the Animals

The animals held a meeting,
they came from near and far,
the elves, the nature devas,
and Pan and Freya too.
Sweet, kind Mother Nature
sat down with fawns and doves.
“The humans have gone too far,
she said. “It’s time we made a stand.”

“We need a plan,” yapped wily fox.
“We’ve got to the stop the machines,
the juggernaut of progress.”
“It’ll have to be subtle,” wise old owl hooted.
“Something hard to see and difficult to track.”
“A virus would do the trick,” snake hissed.
“They’d never see it coming.”

“I’ll carry it,” said the Horseshoe Bat.
“The humans hate me anyway.”
“I’ll be the transmitter,” said gentle pangolin.
“Too many of my kind have died at human hands.
I’ll happily poison the soup.”

“That’s settled then,” baboon whooped,
“though it’s sad it had to come this.”
“We gave them warnings,” Jaguar snarled,
“the burning forests, the savage storms –
but still still they would not see.”

“It is a sorry business,” Mother Nature sighed.
“So many vulnerable folk will die.”
The gathering fell silent. Tears of grief fell.

“It is a dreadful medicine,” mighty condor shrilled.
“but it’s time, it’s time, my friends.
The humans must wake up before it is too late.
If they learn to work with us the balance will be restored.
The Earth will be renewed.

prompt: https://earthweal.com/2021/01/04/earthweal-weekly-challenge-when-animals-speak/
For this week’s challenge, speak for animals, or let the animals speak. You can write about wildlife refuges, the need for them and the challenges. Or choose an animal and write a poem in its voice as a non-human being. What is its song, what does it love or fear or need? How does the climate crisis impact it? I am waiting with both fear and anticipation to find out! — Sherry

A State of Flux

In a state of flux,
no longer sure of what I believe in
beyond

fresh air
the beauty of nature
the silence of the moon
and the sun
rising over the plains

A new year,
uncertainty opening up,
becoming the new terrain
for there is no going back
to what was before
besides. who’d really want that
scenario
the rich getting richer,
the environment getting trashier
greed and selfishness dominating
consciousness
still revolving around the neo liberal nexus –
shifting only when forced.

Interbeing, the expanded self,
fresh air and
the sun rising over the plains
space to think.

The new year promises
broken in the dawn,
coronavirus holding us
all in thrall, in stasis.

Retreating within
becomes my new normal.
I, and countless others,
dreaming the new into being.
Struggling to find our voice
we whisper in the dawn,
fresh air,
a space to think.


linked to: https://earthweal.com/2021/01/01/earthweal-open-link-weekend-51/

Countdown to New Year 29/12/2020

Once again I’m late with doing this challenge. I was writing this post last night when someone who likes to chat rang. We had an absorbing conversation and I totally forgot to get back to this post afterwards.

What I was about to say on this post before the phone rang is that the full moon was in the sign of Cancer in close aspect to the planet Uranus. Some astrologers interpreted this as an invitation to reflect on matters to do the home. The question of what constitutes the home was raised.

This question has been on my mind a lot lately and I think it will be a pre-occupation for at least the early part of 2021. By the end of January I’ll finally be in a position to move from this little rabbit warren that is no longer working for me.

I’ve been considering why my next home might be. During the first Covid lockdown the government decreed that anyone who could work from home should. As a result lots of people realised they could work remotely. They have moved out of the cities in droves. There is an acute rental shortage across the State. Coastal areas within commuter distance of the State capital, Melbourne, are in huge demand. Rents are going up and people are offering three months rent in advance to secure places. The town I live in is changing fast and losing what little charm it had left. The sleepy surfer town in a long lost memory. Now it’s all huge SUVs and cafe culture. I can’t afford to live here anymore.

I’m faced with a choice. I could move way out into the sticks and start over in a small country town with limited opportunities. I could get an old campervan and take off and live #vanlife free camping in the outback. This option appeals to the gypsy in me but I’m not sure it’s a good idea during a pandemic when we don’t yet have vaccines in Australia. The other option is to move into a nearby city and live an urban lifestyle. Because so many people are leaving the cities rents there are now often lower than rents in the regions. The more I think about it the more appealing this option is becoming. It will probably be what I choose.

Another thing astrologers said about this full moon period is that it’s a good time to reflect on 2020 and to consider what personal lessons you learnt from it. One lesson I learnt was that living as a hermit (as I did much for much of 2020) suited me for a while. I needed some down time away external stimuli but ultimately I found the isolation got incredibly boring and was often very lonely. I need to find a balance between time alone and interactions with the world.

My reflections going round and round these ideas frequently and are as hazy and unfocused as the full moon in my photo. With time differences it is now actually New Year’s Eve here. My countdown to 2021 is nearly over. I want to sit down and give the matter the consideration it deserves and will try and write some kind of conclusive post before 2020 ends at midnight tonight. Hopefully this happen but my latest obsession of dyeing cloth in an indigo vat is very compelling. I may spent the time until new year deep in contemplation of indigo blue expanses.

prompt: https://sillarit.com/2020/12/29/countdown-to-2021-29/

Countdown to new year

I was going to do this challenge https://sillarit.com/2020/12/28/countdown-to-2021-28/ but found I was too tired after Christmas to go out and take new photos. Today was the first day I ‘ve been out for walk with my camera. The sun came out at long last and it finally felt like Aussie summer weather.

This is the season when the eucalypts lose their bark. It seems like a fitting symbol for the countdown to new year. I’ll post a photo collage to make up for the days I missed.

Butterflies were flitting all around me as I walked – another symbol of transformation.

The human centre dissolving

Seeking to centre into a wider self
beyond the narrow confines of cultural conditioning
– the worn out perimeters of consumerism,
the incessant demand for gratification of desires
I’ve been told I have for luxury goods and bigger TVs.

Sinking deep into the inner realms
a temple appears.
Emerald steps descend
into crystal caverns –
veins of silver light
flowing to underground rivers
surging through the planet.

Losing awareness of my body
I am rock, I am river
but how to hold the vision,
how to ground the light?

A blink of the eye
and I am back into the everyday,
the people surging to the coast
despite the La Nina summer,
the party hearty crew
deny all talk of viruses,
make like there’s no tomorrow.
But then, perhaps there ain’t.
The way the hordes are acting
you’d swear the Lord of Misrule ran the show.

Seeking to centre into a wider self
I retreat within
– rivers of light
surging through the planet.
Despite appearances
all is interconnected.

(I lost track of prompt here and went off on a tangent but the intent is there. Maybe I’ll another go at sticking to the prompt later in the week.)

prompt: https://earthweal.com/2020/12/28/earthweal-weekly-challenge-a-feast-of-earth-fools/
 Mix your human essence with another living entity, 

Merry Christmas

I hope you all find some happiness this Christmas. I had a pleasant meal with some family members. It was a strange kind of day though with uncertainty about the future hovering in the background. My five year old grandson expressed the faint air of disappointment and unease well when he said he was a bit unhappy with Santa because he didn’t get what he asked for which was a parrot that would sit on his shoulder and talk to him.

Still magic was found in simple joys.

I found a challenge to take a new photo each day until new year that expresses something about the season. It seems like a good way to express something of the complexity of these times. https://sillarit.com/2020/12/25/countdown-to-2021-25/

Being Changed

I wasn’t planning to post anything here until after new year but the solstice energies are so strong I feel compelled to write. The Earthweal prompt corresponds with my mood:- https://earthweal.com/2020/12/21/earthweal-weekly-challenge-a-solstice-bell/

Waves of light
pulsating.
Violet streams of energy
dissolving.
The old is swept away –
an atmospheric river flowing down –
cleaning rains turn to floods
and nothing is as it seems
or even how it used to be.

Which way, which way to go
now the shore has been swept away?
All that’s left is what you cling to
and even that is tenuous.

The ancient sacred season
booms a single shattering note.
Gabriel’s horn sounds
a clarion call to change.

As the mirror year closes
some kind of consecration is called for.
Building a raft
seems too little too late.
It’s something else that’s needed now –
an inner buoyancy perhaps.

Riding the waves,
learning to dance on beams of light,
sailing the slipstreams now.
There’s nowhere to go but on.