Wednesday, May 03, 2017

IT'S SUNNY AND WARM

FREAKISH,  I TELL YOU.

I turned the heat off.

Wednesday, April 26, 2017

Today I went to the garden store to cruise plants. It's a bit pornographic, the way I behave. Or maybe I  have bee tendencies but I'm looking for colors and smells and curvy figures.  There were birds chirping and I thought they were playing some bird chirping audio but no. There by the cash register was a large round stainless feeding trough hung with a warming light and a bunch of baby chicks on bedding inside. They'd just come in the mail (!) from Kansas. The box with holes in it was still on the floor. They were hungry and thirsty, stepping on each other and falling into the water. The gal in the store said she could hear them at the post office ( I bet!). Anyway, I hung over their enclosure and watched. So soft and fluffy and weighing practically nothing. Gladdened my mood.

I bought starts and seeds and headed for my p-patch, the city's answer to those of us who need gardening space. They provide water and tools and a small plot of fertile earth.  I have learned so much from my SE Asian neighbors about how to intensively garden. They grow around and among different plants. Vines grow up corn stalks. Smaller plants grow among larger ones. And they have veggies all year round.

My strawberries were looking healthy and so were the weeds, which I pulled out. I planted spinach and lettuce. I like that spot for squash because it takes so much room to grow. The beds by my house have peas and beets and beans and more lettuce. I'm so glad to be able to walk out and harvest food from my yard.

My yard right now


The back yard just got the walkway and now it's time to fill in with more plants. My friend who has been helping with the heavy lifting says I should feel glad to come home and see my garden. And I do. 

I'm all up in being a student, y'all. I'm studying dharma books and instantly forgetting what I've read. I give my first 'talk' this Sunday and I just might disregard my notes and speak from my heart. Yikes. I could talk for hours about midwifery; history, efficacy, shortcomings, data, etc etc but dharma is...different.  Feels more important to be authentic and of course I can't talk about what I haven't experienced. And that's the truth. 

So wish me well. The topic is racism and American Buddhism. In 15 minutes. No problem. Ha!

Sunday, April 09, 2017

Cold but daffodils and cherry blossoms. Had a salad of collard greens from last years garden. My friend Casey is in Uganda with MSF, helping support Somali refugees. Such suffering in this world. The cycle is endlessly repeating.

Danced with my dear fellow dancers this morning. Generation of joy essential in troubled times. Went to a gallery with a buddy yesterday-all artists responding to the Trump regime. My favorite: The Trump sandwich-white bread, baloney, I.C.E. berg lettuce with American cheese and a small pickle.

Got my taxes and fell on the floor. I owe a massive amount. And a miracle happened. I didn't have a panic attack. I didn't lose sleep. I didn't become completely unhinged. I stayed calm. I knew it would be ok, somehow. Because it will be ok. In the grand scheme, it's a minor thang. Soon enough, I won't own the business anymore, my income will drop precipitously and I'll be living on a tight budget and it 's all ok. It really is. The eight worldly winds. Can't avoid 'em. Praise and blame, gain and loss, pleasure and pain, fame and ill-repute.

Be well. Take heart.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

We had a wee babe earlier this week and dang it all, I was worrying about her, nothing big, more subtle and I sent them to the hospital this morning and don't you know, the baby has a heart thang which needs surgery later on. So subtle. I mean she looked good and was pink and clear lungs and good tone but there was something...

I believe there is much that is unseen in this world. I'm sure there are tree devas, for example. I could go on but I'll spare you my hippie musings. Anyway, a disembodied somebody was tapping on my shoulder, fussing at me about this baby. So I paid attention. As I often say to my students, "It never hurts to have another opinion. What's the worst that could happen? There's not a thing wrong with the child and they'll just sent her/him home." Better to be too cautious than not cautious enough.

Rain and sun, rain and sun. Back and forth, in the faithful weather of the NW.

Off to my sangha or as MLK would have called it, my "beloved community."


Monday, March 27, 2017

The Grand Canyon is, well, grand. We had sun, rain, hail, snow and thunderstorms. In short, we had everything.

I heard a young lady say, "They all look the same!", referring to the many canyons in the south rim. No, they don't.

Waiting on a baby. The house is quiet without Felix. He's with Randy, his buddy and dog sitter. It's like not having the kids for the weekend.

I'm a reader now. I am reading Taming the Ox: Buddhist Stories and Reflections on Politics, Race, Culture, and Spiritual Practice by Charles Johnson. I'm reading Mindfulness by Joseph Goldstein and Lovingkindness by Sharon Salzberg. I just bought three books of poetry by David Whyte. I have piles of books in every room. I'm in the 'improving my mind and understanding' phase.

Soon enough I leave for a long weekend in LA to sit/study with the Against the Stream folks, a Buddhist group that I've been sitting with. I'm beginning a facilitator training with them that extends for 18 months. I'm trying to be a smart Buddhist. So I read. Four Noble Truths. Eightfold Path. Three Jewels. Four Divine Abodes. etc. etc.

I hope everyone is hanging in in spite of the daily news shenanegans. Some kind of cosmic playbook we are having with goofus in the White House.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

in here the windows are too close to the ground
you dare not leave them open
imagine
a person stepping over the sill
unannounced
uninvited

your finger is swollen
just one
you hold your hand over you head
the x-ray was so beautiful
calcium formations carpals and metacarpals
you remember from anatomy class

Caroline's cough is from the mets in her lungs
breast cancer won't stay gone
now it visits her liver
sternum, spine

She's remarkably calm
what did you expect
hysteria
loud cursing
instead she lets her ex-husband drive her home

you remind her
let him love you
let it in
he's doing the best he can
I miss them so much.

Tuesday, March 14, 2017

 Yes, it's a tree growing through a store in Bagan.
And this one is for Maya, my stylist daughter. Although a beauty saloon would probably ask patrons to leave their 6 shooters at the door.

 Little monks praying before the main meal.

Um, Beth the nun in nun robes with the sweet nuns at the monastery. I managed to lose my grip on robe layers daily.

Thursday, March 09, 2017

I blame it all on the POTUS

The other day I was waiting to get to the scone/cookie case while my dear coop bakery person was refilling the shelves. He turned, saw me and asked if I needed to get by him. I was having a floaty bliss day and NOT HURRYING from place to place. I was actually moving slowly and deliberately, paying attention. So I said, "Nah, I'll wait for you. I'm in no hurry." And he replied, "Yeah, it's just cookies."

So I'm using this whenever I'm getting upset about insignificant things-my computer doesn't load fast enough, the freeway is clogged up, I forgot to take out the trash.

It's just cookies.

You're free to incorporate into your lives.

You're welcome.

Friday, February 24, 2017



 Sunrise over the Irriwaddy River and the monks dharma hall at Kyaswa Monastery. Ma Kamala and me just before I disrobed. Ma Kamala radiating loving kindness. A small well tended Buddha in a pagoda near the road leading to Bagan.

Saturday, February 18, 2017

Weather Report

The weather is horrible here on Judevine Mountain.
It's dark and cold all winter. Every day, rain and snow

beat on your head, and the sun never shines. Then
it's spring and more rain, and ice and mud too. And

after that, the black flies eat you alive, and then the
deer flies, and then the mosquitoes, and then it's fall

before you even noticed it was summer. Then there
might be a couple of weeks of decent weather and

then it starts to rain and snow again. It's just awful
living here. I don't think you'd like it here at all.

You'd better find your own miserable place to live.
                                                                -David Budbill

Tuesday, February 14, 2017

Sunday, January 08, 2017

Stuff all around the house, partially packed. I'm not bring much because I'll be wearing the same thing for three weeks.

Finished the typhoid meds, ug. Packed antibiotics, malaria meds and xanax (natch) for the 36 hour plane ride with stop overs, gha..... did I ever say I'm claustrophobic? Well I am a smidge. So riding in a jumbo jet with 120 other people AND if I should be stuck in the center aisle, well you get the picture. They do let you watch a bunch of first run movies on a wee screen but that gets old after a while.

Will I be warm enough? Will I be too hot? Will I go crazy sitting and walking for 14 hours a day? Will the dharma teacher be sweet or severe or cranky? Will my fellow retreatants drive me crazy? Will I drive myself crazy?

All will be revealed.

For the benefit of all beings, I go forth.

And bless all the beings who are marching on January 21st in DC and all over the country. I am there in spirit. It's historic, women.

My daughter is going to DC with her bud Traci. Go represent, ladies.