Saying goodbye, not to you, for you will always be there, but to this chapter of myself is bittersweet. Lives and circumstances change, new lands are to be explored, new outlets are to be created, but not here, not right now. So, with an intense feeling of gratitude and an equally strong feeling of nausea, I am taking a deep breath and letting go. I've packed my bag to the brim with moons, poets, philosophers, photographs, and your encouragements, so the journey ahead will never find me lacking in inspiration or love. I need to be authentically myself, to create spontaneously and freely, to accept this ending so I may be forged by a new beginning. This much I have figured out.
Thursday, November 25, 2010
Saturday, November 6, 2010
Comfort is a terribly vague and individualized concept yet a very simple one. We usually associate comfort with passivity; a comfortable bed, a comforting bath, comfort food. The meaning is anything but passive however. Comfort is an active, immediate, sometimes revolutionary gift. Comfort is supportive, soothing, easing, calming, and transforming. Makes it seem comfort can only be applied as a salve to wound; a spiritual, emotional, or physical poultice of sorts.
I'm not so sure comfort is always born of pain. I had a comforting moment earlier today in the library. I was browsing, lost in my thoughts, when I picked up a book because I liked the cover and was struck with an idea for a story, one sentence plucked from the ether and suddenly I was present in a way I haven't been in a month or more. The sentence tumbled around in my brain in the voice of the character, a woman of indeterminate age, her soft drawl classic Savannah, Ga steeped in mid tones of menthol cool and bourbon warmth, and her hair the color of an autumnal sugar maple leaf glowing in late afternoon sunlight. I listened to her speaking to me, trying to remember exactly what she was saying,"...everyone dreams of having a personal story to tell. Most people live their lives in search of a preamble so enviable it makes one drunk on self importance faster than the bottom glass of prom punch. Unfortunately we all come to realize the most incredible stories of our lives are also the ones we are ashamed to tell."
And so, how comforting to be struck by inspiration again, when all else is whirlwind and flux, the gift of comfort can come from within, not to heal a wound, but to reassure my imagination will never fail me no matter the circumstances I find myself facing.
I've realized, in the looking back, if tears come to my eyes, it is not necessarily for having failed or feeling regret; this comforting tide of emotion is for having dared accomplish something so profound the very grain of my life was changed. I triumphed in some invisible manner; cutting my inner self on the bias so that life will fit me more beautifully than before.
There was a new voice which you slowly recognized as your own, that kept you company as you strode deeper and deeper into the world, determined to do the only thing you could do- determined to save the only life you could save. Mary Oliver
Sunday, October 31, 2010
Tuesday, October 19, 2010
On my commute to work, I pass a lovely farm with horses that graze on rolling hills. The sun rising over the mountain illuminates only the soft tips of their ears by the time I arrive alongside this simple fence to sit in traffic. When the mornings are chilly, a mist blankets this busy stretch of county road, rendering the landscape otherworldly. From beneath the ghostly veil of fog crows suddenly take flight in silence; nursery rhymes and poetry written in black ink across the rosy sky.
Here I sit and wonder over how fortunate I am to experience these moments. Each tiny curling leaf, shifting ray of autumnal light, whisper of chill breeze and transient geese, each fragment of seasonal beauty I harvest all create within me a home. This home I can always return to no matter the new adventures I begin or the familiar places I leave behind. This collected home is me; my foundation of skipping stones, my frames of crisp leaves, my rafters of feathers and moonlight, my hearth kept warm by laughter and love.
Thursday, September 23, 2010
The harvest moon serves to remind us the seeds we planted so long ago have come to bear for good or bad and we are each responsible for our own lot. My sincerest hope is the majority of your harvests bring you what you desire, bless you with bounty in all good things, and if they are lacking, may you find in your heart the seeds for next spring.
Thursday, September 16, 2010
My work is built in the ether.
Spread across beds and couches.
On shabby cat clawed chairs.
Swept into tidy piles of dusty spiders.
Under sunlight, moonlight, lamp light.
Between cracks in the grout and mildew.
Inside machines and engines with rpm.
Beside lovers and friends and enemies.
Over asphalt and glass and gravel.
Below the grass and dirt and slate mountains.
Etched on subterranean rock with my thumbnail.
Stained on the dome of the sky in my blood.
Orbiting in the space between you and the universe.
Winged and free like hawks and butterflies.
Wednesday, September 8, 2010
In her introduction, she spoke to my writing here in this space, and the pieces of ourselves we share with the world. Often we bloggers write to cast ourselves in the best light possible, but we also operate under the knowledge that life is not all pretty prose or well crafted pieces of art; life is the chaotic stimulus gestating these shared mementos. Sometimes it takes the hardships to produce a beautiful sentiment, a thoughtful gift, or a genuine reflection. Sometimes it takes joys to make us see how much hardship we unintentionally create.
This space, this small room called pneuma, is a window into my musings. I'm really here, passing by the window every so often, offering a glimpse inside. This space is a comfort to me, a fire-lit hearth room of sorts, where I can be myself, but not negative, not pressured, not anything for anyone but me. It is a shelter; a safe haven.
There are other shelters I seek refuge in; places I can be someone else. For example, in my stories, I can be anything or anyone. I can be any saturated color of emotion and paint for you a picture that would move you to tears or laughter, make you want to hang it on your wall or burn it to ashes. This shelter is the basement; inhabited by clicking claw creatures. These shadowy figures are the ephemeral ideas and emotions I brave the darkness to gather and craft into a story.
I am grateful for being able to share my home with you; both the cozy rooms as well as the dark corners. The doors here are never locked; make yourself at home.
Friday, September 3, 2010
We waded into the water, the creek bed shimmering with tiny pebbles, shells, and smooth stones. Ahead of us, to the west, a small curve in the bank was tattooed with skinny finger prints, like a dozen children escaped in their pajamas and toddled here for a moonlit meeting. They left behind what to my eyes looked like drowning butterflies, iridescent and glimmering, beckoning me to touch. The raccoons had feasted on the mussels, each delicate shell left clean centimeters below the flowing surface; a simple meal for them, a moment of wonder for me.
My children and I sat for an hour there, catching breezes and chasing minnows with our toes. We collected many of the open mussel shells, their lovely shades of lavender and silver muted in our hands. At some point I became restless, thinking we needed to leave, we had been there for so long. But a simple question from my youngest stopped my rushing things immediately, "Why?"
All of my wanderings and dreaming and seeking the depths, and I still fall prey to my adult perception of time. I forget what it is like to be a child, when time had no value, no relativity other than spending all the time it takes to enjoy, explore, and learn. They know intuitively to spend the least of it worrying, not having fun, and forgetting the really important things. They reminded me to be a sapling again everyday, even every moment, and to appreciate the gift of being alive; struggling again for a hold, a grasp on my place in the world.
Monday, August 23, 2010
Pattern: sev[en] circle by Kirsten Johnstone a.k.a assemblage
Needles: US #5 circs
Wool: Knit Picks Gloss Lace (held doubled) in 'mermaid'
Mods: aplenty...on ravelry.
Saturday, August 21, 2010
Tuesday, August 17, 2010
You've gotten away, you've looked within, you've cleared your soul's shelves and you are ready! Ready to begin whatever it is you are to supposed to begin. But then you wait, and you grow impatient, and you don't understand why after all of this preparation you don't hear anything! You don't hear the answers you seek. You don't hear the directions you desire! Right about now all you hear are the screaming nerves of your half-asleep right butt cheek. You cannot hear anything for all of the noise your mind is making. The most difficult part of self discovery is mistaking getting away for getting out of your own way.
For a long time, my inner voice would loudly declare, "I really would love to be part of the group I admire on Flickr, but none of my photos are good enough."
Then one day, I stepped out from my own shadow, and I was invited to contribute to the archival moon & waiting. They chose to include one of my photos this week.
For a long time, my inner voice would loudly declare, "I love to write flash fiction, but mine are too angst and foul language ridden to be published."
Then one day I simply submitted a story. I created it and set it free. It has come back to me. On Saturday, August 21st, my story will be published on Metazen.
These are small accomplishments, sure, but for me they are huge. They are proof I listened when my heart heard the whisper, "it is time to stop living on wishes and start creating the life you want."
This is the beginning.
Saturday, August 7, 2010
They also remind me of the colors of a fox. Fox is my middle name for those of you who didn't know. So here I am, Heather Fox, in fox colored socks. They are finished, super comfy, and my new favorite pair. Thank you, dear Michael, I love them and you!
Details on ravelry.
Thursday, July 29, 2010
Saturday, July 24, 2010
Lao Tzu wrote, we shape clay into a pot, but it is the emptiness inside that holds whatever we want. I find my self empty, waiting to be filled, in the smallest of moments; the winding of wool on the swift, noticing the light shifting from eastern blue to western gold in the rooms I wander, and listening to the laughter of loved ones so lovely it makes me pause and miss them even at arm's length. This reverential simplicity, these fleeting wabi sabi moments, fill me with the meaningful feelings; patience, faith, love, humility, gratitude, trust, acceptance, leaving no room for suffering I do not need.
These simple acts have two things in common: transience and possibility. They are as fleeting as doves, perched upon the edge of becoming something else altogether; the yeast and flour sustaining bread, the wool a comforting garment, the light another day moving us closer, laughter reminding us life is finite. But as beautiful as these thoughts are, nothing is definite; the bread could burn, the wool knot and fray, the storm keep the light from us for days, the laughter turning to a sob. Thich Nhat Hanh said, "People have a hard time letting go of their suffering. Out of a fear of the unknown, they prefer suffering that is familiar."
I must strive to approach life as a collection of these simple moments and allow myself to be emptied over and over, to let go of my fears, to be brave in the darkness and fill myself with light. I must illuminate my own path. My dough has risen now; another simple moment has moved before us and I am grateful you paused to share it with me.
Monday, July 19, 2010
Monday, July 12, 2010
The above image is one of my favorites since it is of my favorite girl wearing my favorite guy's favorite shoes in her second favorite color. Uncle Michael should be proud. We are all proud of this girl, this smart, beautiful, graceful girl, who wants me to mention this is her new bike as well in her first favorite color.
She has made it her mission to read and memorize all the poems in my collection of Shel Silverstein. I did the same as a child. Which one was your favorite? The moving Where the Sidewalk Ends? Or perhaps the uncomfortably inevitable Boa Constrictor? I love them all.
Thursday, July 1, 2010
Wool: Pigeonroof Studios Original Sock in cassis gifted from the incomparable and lovely Larkin.
Needles: US# 1 DPN
Friday, June 25, 2010
Monday, June 21, 2010
I've been asked this question many times from many different people the past few weeks. Is it real? How do you answer a question like that? Is this rock in my hand real? Yes. Why? Because I see it. But say you are blind. Now is that rock real? Yes. Why? Because I feel it. I can tell you how heavy this rock is. I can tell you how cool it is, yet how quickly it radiates my heat back to me. I can tell you a hundred tiny details if I try, all because I feel it and I believe it.
The solstice sun. I feel it and I believe it. I don't need to prove it or describe it or even understand it. I simply need to feel its warmth through the cold glass and let my being radiate that warmth back to everyone I meet. That is real enough for me.
Monday, June 14, 2010
Photo Grunt featured another of my photos! Thank you yet again! I have posted a new album on Picasa, a Sunday Stroll through my town. Yesterday was Tennessee Williams hot; 95 degrees and as humid as a wet blanket, but there was relief to be found in the cool green waters of the creek, the dense shady woods, and the inviting front porches. Ah, yes, and the breeze from the passing trains.
Sunday, June 6, 2010
You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting--
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
Friday, May 28, 2010
"A shrieking bird," the know it all exclaimed. They all nodded; satisfied she always has the answer. But then a smaller voice spoke up, the smallest in the group, and it protested.
My son said, "No, it is a cicada and he is singing a love song."
"Ugh! That's a terrible song!"
"Not if you're a girl cicada."
I hope your summer is full of laughter, friends, and terrible love songs.
Sunday, May 23, 2010
"The caterpillar will transform into a butterfly," observes the astute six year old.
"But I don't want it to be a transformer," argued the four year old, "it's not a robot! You are wrong!"
During the escalating argument between reason and faith the caterpillar was forgotten. The dramatic gestures and shaking fists of certainty forced us back to the point of discovery; the poor thing held on as long as it could through the storm it had unwittingly caused, but lost its grip. The caterpillar, the source of such heights of wonder and passion, began to free fall towards the pavement. I caught it with inches to spare and we all let out a gasp. The same gasp we all let out when we discovered the bug.
While my children cheered that I saved the caterpillar, they also realized that nothing had changed yet everything had changed. The caterpillar was still destined to be reborn and we were still left to deal with struggling to understand how that could be and how we could accept such a seeming impossibility with the tools, reason and faith, that caused us to lose sight of what mattered in the first place.
Einstein said the process of scientific discovery is, in effect, a continual flight from wonder. Yes, I agree, and that process journeys us in perpetual circles. If we are not too dizzy we can reflect on the situation. When we keep our hearts open and our minds free, sometimes when we are lucky, we see ourselves reflected back in the eyes of the discovery. And the wonder begins anew.
Thursday, May 13, 2010
I meant to post this a few days ago but life, well, you know how that goes. We are deep into soccer play-offs, end of year programs, last minute reminders, and little calendar squares that are too small to fit in each day's notes. Plus everything seems to be shifting a bit, like suddenly the universe has begun to list to one side sending us all scrambling to make sense of things. Even my knitting is being affected. It waits patiently for me to come around again; a woolly little Sancho Panza bearing my flag as I tilt at yet another windmill in my path. Ah! But do not worry, unlike Quixote, I have hope. The projects I have begun will eventually be the complete and in them I will find great comfort. I'll just have to wait until the heat passes. Summer? On behalf of all the southern knitters out there, please be short. Thanks.
Sunday, May 9, 2010
Tuesday, May 4, 2010
Why is it I prefer black and white photos yet rarely create them myself? Why is it the color turquoise makes me sad and joyful simultaneously? Why do I dream so vividly I wake up and can't go back to sleep for hours? Why do the strawberries in the stores look like they've been mugged and left for dead this season? Why am I surprised each May by the inane amount of special activities to celebrate the end of the school year? And, most importantly, why can't I find a sundress that doesn't make me look like I cut three holes in an old pillow case and called it a day?
While I ponder these deep thoughts, why don't you go check on what the uber-cute Jenny has made for her spring/summer Wikstenmade line. More power to the female indie designers (and she knits, too!).
Tuesday, April 27, 2010
But you know what is better than the blokes singing about love? Receiving a surprise box full of it! The Lady was on the same wavelength with me apparently and packaged up a dozen or more skeins of sock yarn, decorated it with Chagall, Toulouse-Lautrec, and shiny shamrock stickers and sent it to me before I even posted about my shameful lack of wool. Karma? Cosmic connections? Knitterly intuition? You make me a believer Larkin!
Thank you, my generous and caring friend. Your gift moves me more than you know and you're right, the purple does call my name.
Sunday, April 25, 2010
ETA: Hey! Look what happens when I update... PhotoGrunt featured me. Check out his awesome talent and eye candy collections. Thanks, Steve!
And...(!)... I've been featured on this Etsy treasury...Go, clickety click for me, and maybe I'll make the front page.
Friday, April 23, 2010
I only have three hanks of sock yarn. Three. Black, orange, and auburn. I know! Unbelievable, right? It is disconcerting not to be drowning in sock yarn. My hands are shaky. I need to replenish my stash. I've started a new pair and was thinking while casting on about the number of stitches it takes to complete my socks. My estimate, based on the stitches per inch, per row, and inches total to knit brings the count to around 30,000. Each of those thirty thousand stitches will be knit with intention... a woolly zen path if you will. What do I intend? Clarity, Calm, and Confidence.
What's your current favorite sock yarn?
Monday, April 12, 2010
Okay, so this child? Unfortunately, he's not mine. But for about fifteen delightful minutes, he entertained me. He was attempting the paddle ball for the first time and the pure joy on his face reminded me the new shouldn't be feared, the old shouldn't be forgotten, and the in-between should be lived to the fullest, until the import of your own happiness is simply too much to bear upright.
Wednesday, March 31, 2010
I draw with words, scribble lines with language, smudge and blur meanings with adjectives, the secret inspirations hidden beside semicolons; the words after them are always the most honest. Now, with new camera in hand, I realize the more I receive the less I know. The stories in me are more than words; they are the integral parts of me. The photos I am learning to create are more than captured moments; they are my life broken down into readable files. This playing at focus and light and patience, has set me on a journey I hadn't been aware of before; I'll bring you with me wherever I go to see whatever I see. Last year I wrote in this space about change. This year year let's write of discovery.
The more it tells you the less you know.
Wednesday, March 24, 2010
Anyway, this girl, my hot weather baby, my golden-tressed princess, she is my sunshine. I remember my OB looking at her and shaking his head while commenting his wife would spend everything to have hair this color. I wonder if it will stay this color as she grows up. I wonder many things about my children's future selves. Will they be happy? I hope so. There are so many variables, ten thousand things that have to go right in a person's life to outweigh the ten thousand that weren't quite right. My wish is I am able to be a part of many of those joys and to be a comfort through many of those sorrows.
Note to my future self: Remember these days? These were the days you realized your heart had more rooms in it than you ever imagined. Promise me they are still occupied and the doors have never been locked. Tell me about your ten thousand joys.
Friday, March 19, 2010
Once the realization is accepted that even between the closest human beings infinite distances continue, a wonderful living side by side can grow, if they succeed in loving the distance between them which makes it possible for each to see the other whole against the sky. Rilke