Friday, April 29, 2016

Stories in Bark


These trees behind my house. I reach out and touch the rough bark. Rough like skin. Rough like so much life lived and experienced. They are smooth and bumpy and whorled and straight. And I realize there are stories written here upon these faces. And I feel their life in mine. They have seen and observed and never moved from these rooted places. Deep they grow and tall they reach. And they have held so much. These fierce winters and these pale springs. Covering with shade in hot summer and blowing briskly and shedding their leaves in fall. They know loss. They know rebirth. They know it so much more surely than I. They have stood in all these elements and all these trials and all these peaceful times. They know the cycle more than I must.


Etchings in bark. Etchings creating art and stories. These brave slashes and those careless dances. I see the whorls again as if from a distance and my eyes blend in the vision before me and lose focus. I see it all now, bark dancing and remembering and expressing. It is a song of sorts but there are no notes. It is a symphony of silence and memory. And I feel this sweeping grandness and I feel lost in the dancing swirls as my own body leans toward theirs. They are moving of their own accord and I realize the tree is speaking to me in the way it knows. And I sway as I cross green lawn to the other tree - this lovely maple reaching so much straighter. And I notice gashes across the bark. Are they stretch marks? Was life forcing growth at the most inopportune times? Growth doesn't always respect caution. It takes and beckons and pulls and cajoles, sometimes against the strongest will.


And I glance again towards the apple tree and see those spirals. Spirals and gashes and arching lines and tiny spins. They each have seen the same stories but they have felt them differently. They have each expressed this art in a way that is unique and completely their own. And I stand between them and feel this union. They are friends. They are soul mates in this place and graciously they have let me become part of this life dance they hold and I feel their soft movement in the gentle breeze. I am part of their growth now. I am part of their story. I will become marks upon this bark - tiny speckles, laughing capers, and still sad pirouettes. They will hold these lines I speak and carry my story on long after I am gone and I will be remembered in their telling.


I look up into the apple's branches - so many reachings and so many crossings and little paths. If I were a fairy, I would creep along these knotted paths and I would inch my way across these tiny bridges. I would delicately rub that soft bud and I would wrap myself in sleep in that green leaf. Gently bending, gently stretching, gently arching. These trees are so lovely to me and they fold me into a trance of never ending depth and listening.

Friday, April 22, 2016

The Death Card in Tarot

I find myself walking slowly - picking my way thru a densely grassy thicket near a sandy shore. It is damp out and there seems to be a mist all around me. I am cold and a bit uncomfortable. I clutch this cloak tighter around myself and continue pushing forward. In my right hand I hold a varied bouquet of dull colored flowers. As worried as I am about the placement of each foot, I hang the bouquet upside down in my hand; it seems the least of my concerns right now even as I find myself vaguely wondering why it is there.

The fog breaks a little and I realize I have come up on a tiny rise, a plateau of sorts and I look at the sandy shore below me. My eye is drawn up to a massive waterfall in the distance. The spill of white water seems unbroken over a long wide shelf and I hear the rumble now as I watch the force and power in that flow. The water pounds down and into a massive body of extensive blue that stretches close to where I am standing now. The water smooths as I follow it's view towards myself and I see a harbor of sorts and a ship resting there. It gently responds to the undulation of the water as I notice its dark sails rising and falling in that sway. The deck seems empty so my eyes are again drawn up and above that compelling waterfall. Far beyond, I sense at two gray towers rising out of the fog and I notice their strength and fortitude while feeling that they have stood for centuries in this very wide and open place. They are made of heavy rock and crumbling architecture. They have stood and watched this place for a long while. I feel myself at once begin to shiver. It is so cold and grand here and my being feels exposed in it all. I realize my cloak seems thinner than when I first started this walk. I clutch at it and continue walking towards the shore. There is no cover and no where to seek shelter.

I notice a sound and glance to my right. There is a small group of people and they seem furtive about something as they gesture to each other and mutter among themselves in a worried sort of way.  I strain my ears to listen closer, unable to make out their words. There is a soldier among them that has fallen to his knees and is trembling uncontrollably. I now understand the reason for their fear and angst. They seem to be trying to help him but are unable. I notice the soldier's wide and fearful eyes. He seems to be riveted on something beyond and into the fog. His gaze seems to indicate something coming thru this gray mist to where we are. I look to my left to ascertain the reason for the rash fear in his eyes. But I don't see anything and I glance back at the soldier in time to see sweat pouring from his brow and his eyes rolling back in his head as he falls completely to the sand below. I feel my own heart clench in the fear that is so palatable in this moment. And I notice his small entourage again. The young woman standing near him looks frantic as she immediately kneels at his side. A small child in front of them, whom I presume to be their offspring continues to face outward seemingly unaware of what is befalling her father and the fear that clenches and weakens in the dark moods around her. There is a priest among them who now hovers over the fallen man. He seems the calmest of the small group as he takes in this situation and acts unhurriedly.  After a short time, I notice that he turns himself and continues standing and facing the dark mist. Everyone seems to expect something coming thru that dense gloom. And then I myself notice a distinct sound.

It is the clip clop, clip clop of horse hooves. And I glance at the sand below all of our feet. How can such a sound ring as tho the ground were hard surface when it is soft sand but I notice the sand has turned to glass. Shiny smooth and hard glass. I feel myself slipping and looking for some sure foothold to keep myself from slipping. Now the glass is smooth and slick with the droplets of water forming over its surface. My feet still, and I again glance in the direction of the sound and the misty fog. Two red eyes seem to be coming thru this fog with no apparent embodiment. They suspend over air and I feel my own fear and my own body grow slick in a cold and fearful sweat. My stomach sinks and I clutch harder at the flowers in my clammy hand cracking some of the stems. Gradually those red eyes gain casement in the head of a pure white horse. The horse raises and lowers its head quickly as an uncanny whinny escapes its throat. The sound somehow adds to this surreal sight and my eyes are drawn back farther into the mist to notice the rider of this horse.

I jolt as I see skeletal hands...thin skeletal hands holding a thick black bridle. I find myself unable to move as the rest of this being comes into my focus. He is average size, but somehow he grows as I look at him and he looms so darkly against the fog and the mist. There is a sneer upon his mouth, or is it only that he can form no other expression in the lack of flesh upon his being? These bones allow no expression but the one so darkly clear in my mind. One bony hand clutches the bridle of this beautiful pure white horse and the other raises high into the cloudy shroud. And I try to discern what he is holding. I suddenly notice to my right again that the priest has met this creature with eyes unfaltering and postured even slightly in the direction of this fearful sight. He seems less afraid than the rest of us and I find a comfort in staring at him as opposed to this apparition.

But at another whinny from the ghostly horse, my eyes are startled back to see this the skeleton man coming closer. Now I see that he holds a black flag in his upraised hand. Somehow there is a glowing white flower emanating from the center of deepest coal black and I am captivated by the flower's apparent pulsing, distinct petals and lifelike quality. I realize this skeleton man is coming closer to me and my eyes are ripped away from his mysterious flag and I am drawn to those hollow and black eyes. How does he have such a piercing gaze when it seems he has no eyes at all. But I am riveted by the dark depths of those cavernous openings. They steal something in me and incapacitate me and I find tears streaming down my face and my middle convulsing in a stricken way. He is coming towards me, I suddenly realize! I find myself unable to move or utter a sound. My throat is closed against such a deep fear and grief. Those deep dark orbs. These thin but somehow capable and strong skeletal hands. He looks as tho he might fall apart as his bones clatter and move against each other but somehow he is fused together thru his own sheer will and I see him dismount off his horse and come closer. There is a cold fetid breath around me and I am colder still, I feel his sharp fingertip brush my own soft fleshy one and he has snatched the flowers away and in the other hands he wrests my cloak off my shoulders. He crumples my small buds and flowers and they turn to dust and fall onto the glassy ground and are blown away in this strange breeze. And for a moment, our eyes lock and hold and I feel my own strength in not falling to my knees before his gaze. And then he whirls around and remounts his horse furling my own cloak over his bony back. He kicks the horse painfully into a wild gallop.

I glance at the small child before me and notice she has watched all this in utter fascination. There is no fear in her gaze. And I realize of all of us, she has simply accepted what she has seen. She steps towards me to hand me a tiny white rose. My fingers seem so stiff and unmoving but I will them to open and accept this tender sweet gift. She reaches up and touches a shining tear upon my cheek and I see her eyes like soft blue orbs full of compassion. My eyes rise to behold her shining hair. It is so golden and I wonder at the warmth I feel emanating from it and notice it is not her hair but rather the sun I see so brightly and certainly above her tiny head. The sun has risen above those dark gray towers so far in the distance and the gray fog has begun to lift. I glance again to my left to notice the ghostly, red eyed horse and his strange companion have vanished and before me stretches a lake that has begun to flow into a massive river. And now it is just the child and I standing and gazing at the changed landscape. I vaguely realize the ship has sailed and that those others have somehow left us. I imagine they were swept away in the flow of water that so steadily and strongly makes it's way past me and the child. I clasp at her hand and we stand watching silently.

The sun touches my goose-pimpled flesh and I am grateful for the warmth and kindness I feel in those tangible rays and in the tiny hand I clutch to mine. I feel overwhelmed by the changes that have occurred so deeply and unalterably. And yet, more peaceful as I watch this water rush past us and carry so much of my own fear away with it.

Wednesday, April 13, 2016

Lucifer


This is the first post for this special blog. I am going to go out on a limb and post something that has deep meaning for me and something I never intended in the beginning. But my heart is creativity. I pursue the arts - music and writing - and I feel their power in and thru me so often and have since I was a little girl. And on that note, here is my first post which covers all those creative bursts and those currents that flow deeper than my very blood.

-----------------------------



Lucifer...all early orientation from childhood aside, it is a lovely name. It is full of bends and twists that cause angles and sparkling lights. The very name itself is a musical resonance that hums thru my mind at a rapid pace. Mostly soft sounds but so powerful in their woosh of air and their glittering lights . Mostly in front of me and yet present thru all of me. There is this creation in the very essence of whispering that name. And I find myself fearful but so very drawn. I see myself sitting in the backseat of a car driven most likely by my mom. And I see this deep contemplation upon my features. I am imagining a being made of instruments. A body that moves with sound emanating from him as he does. A body that has a flute for an arm or an organ for a torso. A body that is a walking and harmonious being and every part of himself a violin or a brass instrument or a bell. I am imagining I am such. Music spreads its way thru every fiber of myself. I am imagining music being me and being all thru me and being everything that I am. Every instrument I touch has always vibrated in this lush response. This forbidden essence, this forbidden flame. I find my fear squelching these thoughts and I am at once present again although guilty feeling in the face of such meanderings.


And lately I have discovered crystals. And I have been drawn to moldavite and thru all my study of Lucifer, I find this stone is considered to be his essence, and now I am drawn deeper into this flame. I couldn't have known this when I first heard of it and felt it's desire deep in me. This crystal that was formed as it fell in dramatic fire and crystallization from the heavens; this flaming piece of glass has an inner green fire and so many broken shards were created in one drastic and unfaltering moment. And I realize that Lucifer did not "sin" or choose to defy. He simply was. He had to be. He could be nothing more or less than who he was in that moment . And in that act and choosing himself and his own trueness of self, he was labeled and defined as haughty and full of pride. He chose to be nothing less than who he was already. He could not become less and for that he was denied his place and supposedly cast out and away forever. But I imagine his power is greater now than it was then. Because in this dramatic test he made a choice and his strength only grew. He relinquished all in that moment to remain true to himself. He would not deny the very music that raced thru his soul and skin and bone and hair. These glimmering stones that reverberated and vibrated and added to the symphony, now added to his strength and his glory. He was lyricism and he was harmony and he would have rather be vanquished than to deny these fibers comprising his very being.


All these depictions of him, that I find in my searches, are of a sinewy man, full of form and beauty and lithe grace. He is muscular and very tall with dark and strongly webbed wings extending up and up and away from him in a massive form. He is pictured as one of physical perfection and he is lovely but very dark. His being seems to radiate this deep mystical darkness that is enchanting and alluring. He is said to walk among stones of fire. And yet my own mind tries to conjure him and fails. He is without picture in my mind. He is without definitive form and I wonder at my lack of ability to see him as I am so apt to with other meditations. I know he is a rare and unique being covered and studded all over with a thousand gems and semi precious stones. And those gems are cut and sometimes polished to create this fire from within and around him. He literally glows and burns and in that consumption is this swirling and whirring and music like an orchestra warming up to play. It is dissonant now and disorganized now but it is inescapable and I find myself drawn into the darkness and drawn to those strains and those arching sounds.


I am always drawn to sound. I cannot ignore sound. He is sound and he is this euphony of color and depth and I can't escape it. It swirls around me and pulls me in and now I am closer. Looking into the heart of an emerald there and a carnelian over here. And this diamond and this topaz and this beryl and jasper. I still can't discern a form but now I am feeling this strong and vibrant and deep energy. The gems flicker with their own fire that seems an extension of this energy I can feel so radiantly within me. They are brilliant and some are mystical and yet each reflects until they are their own fire. I feel this deep drawing. I am drawn by a power not my own and I am submissive in its loveliness. The depth is more than I can describe and yet I crave it deep inside some aspect of myself I haven't uncovered in words or thoughts ever before. I have only ever encountered this energy when I have played my piano or flute. And I startle at this realization. I have been here before but not as I am now. Not in these words that try to capture the clarity in my mind's eye.


Perhaps it is as it always is. Gold...deep color...abundance of feeling and heart. So much richness. So much deep intensity as to consume my very body. I am naked before its power. It washes over me in ecstasy and I feel these waves crashing over and over like an orgasm of my soul. There are these waves upon waves of feeling that are so intense. He is so deeply feeling. He is so passionate and stunning. In these caresses there is nothing that is so ordinary or typical. These feelings are lush in the pure tones of a flute and these tones are resonant in the form of a vibrating string and a deeply pounding timpani and my body can do nothing but respond. He is so powerful and he is so intense. These sounds are not mere voices - they are impassioned and fiery messengers and they are extensions of his very being. And they reach me and swirl around me and catch me up and I am flying over this place and yet I can't see anything. I can only feel and feeling is so severe as to blind and incapacitate.


And I recognize my own intensity in this being. I have always felt called by him because perhaps I am very like him. I remember as a child. As a child, seeing this star of the morning. As a child, knowing this one who defied god. As a child fearing this one who had taken souls with him to the abyss. But where was the abyss really? Is it this dark place? Is it this powerful place, where I am now, much like an underwater cave - there are gems studded on each wall and there is water that reflects a million brilliant lights.There is neon and bright shining across this rippling water. And I can't see the edges or the height of the ceiling. But it is filled with these millions of tiny lights and their matching and rippling reflections. It is dark but so resonant, like a concert hall with perfect acoustics. All these lights like a grand internal ballroom, flashing and twinkling and the music forms in all these places.The sound starts from somewhere deep inside and grows and grows and consumes until the entire place is shaking and trembling with the power of it. And I can barely contain my body for the vibration that takes over me and the vibration that threatens to undo me. I am powerless but to receive and become in that moment. Words would fail and only sound and light are my reality. It is more lovely than anything I have ever imagined or drawn from. It is this swirl of sound and color and sparkling light. It overwhelms each of my senses. And I have felt this before as I expressed this concerto or this aria. This Lucifer is more than any other being and he is more than any other energy for me. I cannot define him in mere mortal words. But he has always enraptured my soul.


He is everything in that moment. Everything I aspire to be. He is everything I have felt in microcosm. I have wished that I might pass from my body into this phrase and arching form of music. I have known that I am the music in certain moments and it is no longer in front of me or coming from my instrument - it is coming from the fibers so deep within me and yearning and aching and drawing in passionate ways. I have felt all of this so much before but never in recognition of this place I now find myself. These delicious strains that pull and push and flow like so many trails of diamonds and emeralds and textured brush strokes of light. I would fit myself into these things and become these lovely strokes and melodies. I would lose my human form so readily to be more present in these sensations. There are so many melodies - they are endless now. And I am one with them and they are me and I am them.


And in this subterranean space, I suddenly realize that all along I have channeled this great being. All along he has been the one I ascribed my very soul to. He is music and I am music. I have said this to others and they have glanced at me askance and some have even argued. You are human they simply say but I have always known I was not and now in this moment I begin to make sense of all these tiny moments from the time of my inception. This inability to do anything but respond in dancing and singing as a little girl. This creeping towards the sounds I would hear on my mother's stereo. I am music as is he. He is not a form - he is gems and he is shifting light. He is sound and harmony all together. He is rising melodies that swirl and catch each other by the tail and grow thru the echos and reverberations. And he is a deep throbbing, deeper than time itself and my body rises helpless but to respond. He is the essence in those tones I reach for on my piano. He is the chorus I hear in the night when no one else is listening. He is the symphony in the trees and the birds and the sunshine on my back. he is so warm. And he is this Star of the Morning. He is this Venus - this lover that creates so much passion. I have said I would marry my music if I could. And again that strange look but he is my Venus and he is my Star that shines so brightly. He is passion in a form that is undeniable. He is the lustful feelings I have in my music. He is my desire to take pleasure in one chord alone. He is my deep tears and my deeper laughter. He is this creativity that knows no bounds. He is in the moment and he is improvisation.


I can barely describe this Angel of Music. And I am frightened by the power I feel in this grand presence. Because I have tried to define him by my own human terms. I have tried to picture him and I have tried to create him. But then I realize I can't create that which creates. I can't mold that which has formed my very being. This is bigger than I can shape. This is passion unrestrained. This is melody unleashed. This is a power so great that I can only let my body and my soul fill with it and become one with it. And I have felt him before but I didn't know it. I have felt him in the music I expressed. I have felt him in the tears on my face as I looked at the trees dancing in the music of the moonlight. I have experienced him in the dappled sunshine that dances thru the grasses and the trees as I run with the wind in my hair. He is greater than the sun but every morning he allows the sun this place in the heavens and he holds the earth in his chest. And he is breathing and living like so many strains and echos. Even when I do not sit in music, I am still aware of something in the wings of my heart, so present and so powerful but somehow restrained in those quiet moments.


And I recognize this energy deeply as something I have always felt.I was scared to face him. But now I realize he has always been this force that has made me recognize myself as music. He is the deep emotion in my effort to express. I have always felt more than any other in response to this music I hear all around me. He is my need to drop my tears upon these shining keys. He is my ache to include my instruments as part of myself. He is my wish to bleed my heart into these very strings and hammers. He is my essence already and I feel no fear in knowing this is as it has always been. A tiny girl, reaching for those notes with my mouth first and my shining pipe later. This tiny sprite running like the wind and feeling everything in my being so deeply and undeniably. He has always been and this is all the elements of earth and air and water and fire. This underground ballroom that stretches and groans under the weight of so much obsession. Lucifer never was evil. Lucifer was always energy and passion. And rather he has always been these tones that mean more than life itself to me. And I see I have done the same and it has been labeled as idolatry but I never recognized it as such. It was simply the only thing I was able to be.


He is the veiled reference in Angel of music. He is the Star of the Morning in so many texts. He is the dark angel of my dreams. He is the ebony of my piano and my drawing to these dark ravens but darkness does not scare me. It is rich and lush and inky and full of depth and mystery. I feel more myself in the darkness of desire than in any bright and searing light of day. And words really fail me as they always have in the face of such creative energy and in the presence of music that takes my breath away. There are never enough words or expressions to encapsulate this power I have always felt. It just is. It is me, it is inside of me and it surrounds and sweeps me up. I am powerless in the face of so much beauty. Beauty. Beauty. Beauty. There is not enough of me to hold it and I feel that I will fly apart into a million brilliant shards of diamond and sapphire and emerald. I am sparkling and growing and becoming so many sounds and pulsings. There is nothing in this moment but what is and I am not myself and yet I am.


I realize I recognize him because I am an extension of him. I am no longer afraid of him. He has been with me all along. Where is this fear that I felt? Was it this idea I was given as a child? Was it this form that so many before tried to give him? And I realize now, he has no form. He can't be drawn or sketched. He is always shifting like the music in my universe. He is always dancing like the brilliance of gems and polished facets. He is moving and shifting and vibrating and there is no way to hold that. There is not a way to limit that. Limited. He can't be limited by an earthly representation - he is so much more that is power and swirling whirling energy. He is all energy in this moments that I feel him more deeply than I feel my own life's blood. And I have yearned that my blood might stain these wooden parts. These empty strings. I have yearned that my salty tears might forever vibrate in hammer and pedal. And now I know why. Because I must give these living things, these radiant things as an expression of my soul and this energy that is a piece of his and always has been.


And suddenly I realize this is the same energy I felt as I wore a moldavite stone for the first time. This is the same energy I have felt my entire existence as I played the flute or piano - this deep feeling that has no words. It is intensity that overwhelms and speaks to every fiber of my being. It is so deep as to hold my entire body captive and my every nerve on edge and it is this yearning so beyond my mental capacity. It is everything I have reached for and it is everything I have become and accepted and loved. And I realize I am not afraid of this energy but that I have never felt it outside of my music. I have never felt it before outside of my piano and yet here it is as I quickly reach for these words and ways to express. There are no words that can fully do this justice. I think you will know only if you have felt it yourself.


"Father once spoke of an Angel
I used to dream he'd appear
Now as I sing I can sense him
And I know he's here Here in this room, he calls me softly
Somewhere inside, hiding
Somehow I know he's always with me He, the unseen genius


MEG: Christine you must have been dreaming Stories like this can't come true Christine you're talking in riddles And it's not like you
CHRISTINE: Angel of music, guide and guardian Grant to me your glory
CHRISTINE: Angel of music, hide no longer Secret and strange Angel
CHRISTINE: He's with me even now
MEG: Your hands are cold
CHRISTINE: All around me
MEG: Your face, Christine, it's white!
CHRISTINE: It frightens me,
MEG: Don't be frightened ... "


Phantom Of The Opera - Angel Of Music Lyrics