Oh, the Pretty Pictures

stairwell .

Standing at the top of a staircase looking down is a disconnected experience. Out of view is the first few steps necessary before reaching the bottom, the solid ground. Disoriented, a hand or two might grasp for something, anything to steady the mind’s eye. What is forgotten in the moment is the sensations traveling the length of the body from the feet; the pressure on the soles from the body’s weight. One end doesn’t know what the other end is doing.

(Yeah, I know. But this isn’t Politics 101.)

Taking this photo was a challenge for me. In order for me to orient my brain enough to feel solidly grounded, I planted my feet wide and took more than a few deep breaths before I could raise my camera up to take the shot. Yes, this is exactly what I saw at that moment in time, and looking at the photo now still threatens to disorient my sense of balance.


Tim Knows How to Pry Me Out of the House


Daily horoscopes are just like any other prophesy or prediction. Once spoken, you are duly warned. The hope is that you listen enough to ward off the prediction. Of course, there’s this thing called “self-fulfilling prophesy” where a person is so anxious and fearful beforehand that the dreaded thing happens just because the person set it up so well to happen.

My horoscope today caught me blindsided, it’s so close-to-home:
…put some distance between you and whoever or whatever has been making you feel so blue lately. Come on. You've seen way too much of your living room lately. Your dog is even trying to figure out how to get you out of the house. Go ahead; have some fun. You've put in your time.

I don’t think I’m really all that “blue,” but I do tend to stay home when I’m home. It’s the part about my dog that hit my funny bone. Well, “dogs” in my case. I truly wish I could train them to understand it when I say, “it’s a day off tomorrow, we can sleep in.”


A Bonus Punch


These two guys (i.e., young men) came in today. They work for a lawn care service, and when I asked just how busy they were this time of year, they taught me a few things. They go around picking up branches, raking leaves, the usual stuff. But, they also said a lot of things grow in the winter, such as monkey grass.

Monkey grass? There’s something called monkey grass?

What they described sounded to me like fescue, which I have a fair amount of out in the pasture. Or, I thought I did. A woman listening in on the conversation suggested I Google “monkey grass,” and sure enough, there it is.

Learn something new every day, eh?


Awakening: Epilogue

Have you read Awakening: Part I and Part II?


The Teaching of Wisdom is not a textbook with numbered pages. The Teaching is one of [spiritual] indications for life as applied to each necessity. ~Agni Yoga, Pp 304

In my early years, every Sunday was spent in church, eyes and nose running from the allergic reaction to the ungodly amount of women’s perfumes, dutifully standing, kneeling and sitting per the little, cheap mistlette’s instructions. The priest, shrouded in vestments waving incense, everyone in their Sunday best and the evil sounding pipe organ music lacked meaning for me from the beginning. The school bused us into town for religious studies twice a week. The nuns, all dressed in black with horribly wrinkled faces and gnarled hands, the only flesh visible, only served to terrorize my young mind, making anything they said only indiscernible noise to my ears. None of it came remotely close to what I had experienced in the woods that day.

No one ever mentioned anything like what I had experienced. I wouldn’t have known how to open the subject to talk about it myself, so I carried that memory with me in silence. Could I be the only one that had that happen to? I was certain that I was. And, never once did I question its occurrence.  That experience was more real, more truthful than anything I had ever experienced before, and for many years, since.


Awakening Part II: The Clearing

Have you read Awakening Part I: The Path?


They are gone…

Kneeling, her chin on her chest, her arms loosely hung at her sides, her heart was saddened. It was a deep, aching, heavy sadness. As she knelt, the humming slowly quieted.

As the humming eased its grip on her, she found that her vision was still flicking back and forth, though at a slower pace. The color had returned and her senses felt.

It was easier now. She sat staring at a small point of ground that didn’t seem to change much between the flicks. One was of bare dirt between grasses, the path, and the other of underbrush and weeds but no path.

She look down at her thighs and saw the jeans she had on with her flannel shirted arms next to them. She hoped her knees weren’t dirty, knowing she’d catch hell when she got home if they were. When her vision flicked, she startled. A very rough, coarse material now covered her legs and arms. Looking at her chest, she saw the same and much longer braids. Reaching up with one hand, she touched a braid and felt the movement in her scalp, but the hair was black, rough and the braid was tied off with some sort of string instead of the rubber band she had used. The fear returned. Those weren’t her legs, body and hair!


Awakening Part I: The Path

indiancampPushing closed the latches on the violin case, the sad feeling that always came with the sharp, metallic clicks seemed stronger this time. It was always sad to enclose the beautiful sounds within the hard, impersonal case, but it was necessary. She took good care of her violin.

Raking a brush through her long, brown hair, she divided the mass into two, then braided both sides, tying them off with rubber bands. As much as she loved to feel the wind lifting the hair and blowing it back, she knew it wasn’t always safe to leave it wild and free.

What? Who said so? Yet, she knew it was true. It wasn’t safe.

The red handkerchief was ready to roll and tie across her forehead, then she quietly turned the knob on the bedroom door and listened. Walking silently down the hall, through the kitchen and dining room, she was at the door. The rush of her successful escape caused her to rush, just a little, and she was out the door and running across the back yard.

Her hair wasn’t loose and flying like she wished, but instead, her braids thumped on her back as she ran across the expanse of the open yard and into the underbrush-thick woods. Not until the house was safely out of sight did she slow to a hurried walk.

She slowed more as the scent of the woods met her nose. The deep smell of the earth, the pine and the green of the tree leaves calmed her heart, the sun shining through here and there warmed her face, and the cool air touched her cheeks. The large mass up ahead was a beloved tangle of deadwood, cracked and bleached from years of weather, but she didn’t stop.


When Wonder Isn’t Wonderful


I wonder…

Duality is a given, a foundation of life. There is the most profound and wondrous duality of all of life: Spirit and Matter. It is wondrous, wonderful, a wonder.

Matter, the material, is the trap we’re born into, with lifetimes to learn how to transcend that trap, free ourselves to grow and become our potential. Many paths lead to this same goal; and just as many are detours, pits of quicksand, set there to suck up and devour any who choose that particular path, despite the infinite warning signs of gigantic leaps of faith needed to carry one over the traps.

I wonder…

When will the blind see and the deaf hear? Those are the ones that pound mercilessly on the table as they blast out their defamations as though they are the only ones with the right to judge, condemn and sentence, all in one breath.


Get Your Head Out of Your…

head_up_assDo I need to say it out loud?

Do I have to?

It’s too bad that the concept isn’t more far-fetched than it is, wouldn’t you say?

Wake up and smell the roses already.

Do I have your attention yet?


If you have a job, you’re one of the lucky, gas prices are slyly inching back up, food prices never came down from last year’s disaster, and none of this stimulus stuff seems to have any effect at all. The weather, the politics, the news, the weather, the politics… In self defense, the head goes up the back door and there’s only room to focus on getting through one day to see another.

Does it have to be this way?


But, you’ll have to come out of your little protective shell a bit more to find that out for yourself.


Hey Judge, Watch the Signs Already!


If you drive an unfamiliar road, you watch the signs. Usually, those road signs give you fair warning of what’s about to come up. I used to drive a Honda that handled so well that I knew I could take corners at up to 20 mph faster than marked before it felt like it was too fast to make the corner. ‘Maria Andretti,’ I know, but I also know that my little pickup doesn’t handle like that, so I heed those signs and take corners per my truck’s mechanical capability. No brainer.

Last night as I was just about ready to feed Odin, this flatbed tractor trailer hauling a crane went speeding by my driveway, and eye-balling that monster, I judged it to be going close to 50 mph.  Now, this photo was shot while standing in my pasture and shooting in the direction that truck was headed. See that sign? Well, it really is a 90 degree curve there, and not that far away. The speed limit on my road is 35, so that sign is placed where the corner coming up wouldn’t be a problem if going the speed limit. But, at 50?