Monday, 14 March 2016

Today's Small Beauties

Waking up feeling all snuggly.

The number of lovely bottles of bathing deliciousness that I have unearthed in my massive campaign of decluttering. Today, I had a wondrous shower with vanilla pong for company.

Remembering Tony Benn, who died 14th March 2014.

Badger Monday, a campaign against the cull on Twitter. It heartens me.

Learning that badgers helps to spread primroses, through their digging up of worms, and hugely help with the growth of difficult to propagate wild cherry trees, by eating the fruit and then leaving the stones in helpful little badger poo piles. How deeply they shape our land.

Learning that our British badgers are unusual in living in such close knit family groups. Apparently in the rest of the world they are much more solitary. Ours are truly special; independently minded island-dwelling beings, just like us. It has been a learning about badgers day.

The beautiful sunshine spring warmth of the day.

Buses coming just when I needed them and drivers being kind.

Speaking to a man who knew about vans. I like a man who knows about vans.

Small girls with shiny pony-tailed hair. There is something so sweetly hopeful and innocent about them.

Extra small children all shouting "fee fi fo fum!!!"

A lovely patch of red deadnettle and a bumblebee foraging on daisies.

The hope of a heron.

Blackthorn flowers like bright little stars.

Himself giving me a lecture on the way to fold socks, and folding in general. I love him for that.

The continuing making of brave moves towards a wiser, wilder, truer life.

Finding a tiny 200 year old Scottish Blackhouse with whitewashed walls for sale on the island of Tiree. I am making plans to move in immediately (if only!). I will send my dreaming there tonight.

Talking to a dear friend on the phone. I have a little bit of a phone phobia so that is a small victory, and it is always good to talk to a friend.

Sunday, 13 March 2016

Days of Small Beauties

Waking to blue skies and sunshine for several days in a row. I love that feeling of waking up and being excited at the thought of the sun on my skin.
The wild imagination and delight of small boys when they are offered a story all of their own.
That the world seems to have exploded with spring wild flowers! On Friday I visited the churchyard of St Mary's, Plaistow, a favourite wild flower haunt and found snowdrops,my first bluebell of the year, red deadnettle, celandines, primroses, narcissi, crocuses, daisies, green alkanet and then off to St Blaise's Well where I spotted wild red currant, cow parsley, more snowdrops growing perfectly by the Candlemas well, and tiny sweet violets. And not to forget the vibrant green of baby nettles and cleavers, come to wake us up for the spring! Bliss on earth.

How happy~sad and grateful I feel when I see celandines, of which I see many these days. I grieved deeply for celandines when Will died and I lost the boat, as celandines had been such a beautiful sign of spring, and that matters on the water where the winter is often so hard. I didn't remember ever having seen any other than by the water and felt deeply sad that they would no longer be part of my spring. And then, last year, I found a patch of them in a park and now I see them often; yesterday quite near my house! I feel blessed by the memory that they stir and by the glossy sunshine beauty of their petals.

Discovering that female yew trees have flowers and that great clouds of pollen float from them when the breeze takes them! Beautiful!

Sun and shadow on yew bark.

Being in St Mary's churchyard at just the right time to catch someone unlocking the church for a moment and letting me in too explore. I have never found it open before and have had to be content with pressing my nose up against the glass door. I very much dislike churches being locked and it was stunning inside; beautiful stained glass windows, a glimpse of something in one of them that I decided was Fly Agaric mushrooms, and the most beautiful high altar. Also a lovely child friendly thing they have there called 'Twinkles', and a massive collection of soups in a fabulous book for £3. I loved it and I felt norty being inside!

Spending a few moments filling my ears, my heart, and my soul with the song of a wildly singing little robin and hearing the response of another robin far away. I became very aware of the sound-web of communication and song that birds weave around the planet. Powerfully beautiful.

How nervous people get when they see someone standing still in an alley staring up at the sky ~ you know they want to ask what you are doing, and I would have shown them the robin, but of course they didn't. This is England.

The sun shining through the leaves of white crocuses.

My second visit to St Blaise's Well and, this time, having more of a sense of where the true well water runs from and taking two red roses as offerings; one given to the well and one to a yew tree. I loved the clear flow of the water, how it tumbled in a shallow stream around gently rounded stones, how tiny green plants have begun to grow in its waters, how deeply it sings of life and all that is holy and wild in our land. I am so blessed to be able to go there.

That, when I left the house that morning, I hadn't been sure whether to go to the well as I have so much to do and then I opened Sharon Blackie's new book, 'When Women Rose Rooted' and the first thing I read was a poem about wells and how we have to 'return to the source', so I did. And that is the simple magic of the everyday.

From 'When Women Rose Rooted' by Sharon Blackie ~ everyday magic!

More drifts of tree pollen, this time from a Twisted Hazel. I'm not sure that I have ever seen tree pollen before!

A jaunty hello from a man on a tractor!

A flurry of lovely feedback about my tarot readings, some of which made me tearful, and how generous people are to me.

Coming home to find a mystery package containing sweet and thoughtful wonders.

Unexpectedly receiving just the right money in the post to pay for the crow snacks that I had just bought for them. Beautiful abundance.

Powerfully deep, real, and vulnerable conversations with Himself; such love and wild trust, in ourselves and in Life!

Spending my days unearthing layers of memory and clearing away cobwebs and old ghosts. This is the work.

Tuesday, 8 March 2016

Today's Small Beauties

Just the right amount of hot water to indulgently fill the bath right to the edge. Bliss.

The dark shape of a prowling cat in next door but one's garden.

Wearing my blue silk skirt, only recently unearthed from the depths of my wardrobe after several years in obscurity.

A day of abundance in the Old Ladies' Card Shop and a visitation from a beautifully butterfly-eared Yorkshire Terrier.

Helping a lady in the shop find just the right box to put a lovely necklace in which she had bought as a present for her daughter as it would "look lovely over her hijab". It will too!

Falling newly in love with Himself every day.

Lovely buzziness and excitement on my tarot page and loving the honouring of dark and new moon there.

Maybe-four new requests for readings; feeling held by Life and in the flow of good things.

Catching sight of a fox!

Another wonderful evening at Blackheath folk club; listening to the most joyous and real music and feeing brave enough to sing my sea witch song and read a poem. Everyone was so respectful of and sweet to my wobbly self and one of the women said that she needed a drink afterwards. I took that as a compliment!

Thank you to Ian Ripsher for the piccy

How present International Women's Day has been today. It was wonderful that so many women performed at the folk club tonight in its honour, and how many men deliberately sang songs written by women too. Beautiful creative togetherness and solidarity.

Hearing my friend, Jo's stunning song about the moon.

Being complimented on a line in my poem about 'iridescent lunacy' by a fabulous songwriter.

A wonderful and much needed offer of help and friendship.

Winning a prize in the folk club raffle. Abundance!

Finding that the folk club pub sells Fentiman's Ginger Beer; not only delicious but it also reminds me of a lovely client I worked with at the hospice. When she was close to dying Fentiman's Ginger Beer became her greatest, and almost only, pleasure. She would pour it slowly into a glass and then watch it for ages; the colour, the way the bubbles moved, the sheen of cold on the outside of the glass, the anticipation of drinking it, and then finally the joy of the taste and the coolness in her throat. Sometimes she saved some for me and we would share it; an honour. It was lovely to think of her today.

Discovering that one of the pubs 'award-winning pies' is called The Green Goddess.

Feeling that Himself is proud of me and feeling very proud of myself.

And coming home to find Tom Robinson's song 'Right On Sister' shared with me by my friend Sal. Dancing around the living room is a wonderful way to end the day. Thank you, Sal!

Monday, 7 March 2016

Today's Small Beauties

Being made a lovely sweet chai to start the day. And many hugs.

A bright blue sky and the perfect weather for wearing a winter coat, sunglasses, and a woolly hat all at once!

Setting off for London with lovely goodbyes from Himself, Stefi Queen of Cats, and Maisie, the next door cat. Proper.

Being remembered by my taxi driver who used to live near me in Greenwich.

Bright sun lighting the silver sea.

The perfect curve of a green hill against the perfect sky.

River boats in the sunshine.

Spotting a blackened plaque on a bridge which informed me that Abbey Road DLR station is built on the site of a Cistercian Abbey; St Mary's. Sad that it isn't still there but I welcomed the opportunity to acknowledge the presence of the sacred beneath the everyday.

A whole hour to spend in a coffee shop doing not much at all.

Two lots of lovely feedback about my tarot readings. Feeling very blessed by that deep connection with other souls.

A sweet few moments watching the bright bobbingness of a Pied Wagtail on a fence post. What lovely cheery birds they truly are.

Alder catkins shining red in the sun.

Seeing a heron in flight over Thamesmead.

A sprinkling of Blackthorn flowers like tiny stars along the roadside.

Much abundance, after several days of worry; feeling the beautiful flow between us all.
The sweetest and most unexpected of gifts.

That Will's funeral was two years ago today; acknowledging the amazing movement of time, thankful for the help and support of many friends, especially Shoshana and Jennifer, and feeling moved that his sweet body has rested for so long in the sacred land. I like to think of him dreaming there and I know that those of us who shared his day did it right. It isn't a sad feeling. I feel nothing but gratitude and love for the power of the land to hold us. Healing in all worlds.

Will in his sacred land, 24th July 2011

And looking excitedly forward to the next few weeks when much will change and shift. Life is good!

Tuesday, 1 March 2016

Today's Small Beauties


Dozing to the radio; a favourite thing to do.

Listening to Pixi singing 'Solid Ground' over and over again and filling up on courage and wild magic. 

"We walk on solid ground, solid ground.

It's the land. It is our wisdom.
It is the land. It shines us through.
It's the land. It feeds our children.
It's the land. You cannot own the land. The land owns you." (Dougie MacLean)

This is officially being added to my 'list of songs that make me feel as though I can do anything'!

Cool, gentle rain on my face and a warm coffee cup in my hand.

Going into the Old Ladies' Card Shop when all the lights are still off and getting ready for the day. There is something pleasing about waking the shop up myself and feeling it come alive.

Sun shining on the Green after the rain; I love the way that the trees light up.

Tripping in the shop and sailing along behind the counter at a speed that no legs should be expected to go but not hurting myself. Thank you legs and unexpected co-ordination!

Breathing deeply and doing a Brave Thing, which I had already decided on and so tried to do without really thinking about it at all. It worked!

Feeling brave and committed to my own life and free and new and foolish in the best of ways.

Being referred to as "Brave Bridge Burning Bee'. Hoorah to that!

Rewarding myself for doing the Brave Thing by going to the tea shop and making myself warm and snug amongst the cushions; and I was given two stamps on my loyalty card, rather than just the one that I had earned. Subversive I thought!

Entrancing the cutest baby in the world.

Himself worrying about me and making sure that I am being mindful, which feels in the loveliest of ways like my mum sewing my name in my coat and making sure that I don't lose my mittens.

A second day of rummaging in my long-neglected wardrobe and finding completely forgotten clothes that I absolutely LOVE, but had stopped wearing out of stress and loss and sadness; feeling the person that I used to be when I wore them, and am becoming again, beginning to shine like a little torch.

Talking about Bone Woman.

My lovely local folk club where tonight much friendship was shared, many Welsh voices were heard and Welsh songs sung, much courage was gathered up and turned into beautiful performances, and where music matters. I never want to be anywhere where music doesn't matter. Life is too short!

Being invited to read a poem at the folk club on International Women's Day next Tuesday. I might even gather up my own courage and do that.

Two glasses of Green Ginger Wine. Yum!

Lego Frida Kahlo!!

Feeling excited, full of wonder, and yet quite, quite safe. I'm not sure that I have ever felt quite like that.

And rain beating on the window sending me gently into the dreamworld.