Final Reprise

PART ONE:

When the warrior finally reaches the green pastures and sunny meadow,
when the warrior puts her weapons down,
she feels the heat rise from within her and lies down to rest
under the high grass, smell of lyrical flowers.

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Further no purpose, no quarry in sight, she dreams of battles
and then when she rises, all comforts greet her body
and she sighs, and she sleeps again.

When the warrior has found her way out of the darkness
into the light of her own heart
there is no longer need to strive

for arrival is done
and the land is still.

There is nothing left to seek,
yet the song still awaits, as she waits for the song.

Soothe the jagged remembrances of evil;
remember the misplaced soothing of jagged affairs.

Awake she is, like never before and
like never before, she draws from her sleep,

every fiber,
her being whole now,
glistening and listening to the holy voice within.

 

PART TWO:

I asked, “Once the debris has been cleared and demons faced, transformed, what is left in the sacred vessel of the shadow within us?”

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and I heard the reply,

“That which one is connected to, but has no words for.

That which gestates and must not be disturbed, lest it be damaged in the process.

The Great Mother, who holds us, who nourishes and who weeps and cheers for us.

This is also the realm of the White Raven, she who has been burnt through and through and yet still lives. She who is Grace with a thin cloak of iron unseen and unshakeable. She who is container, soft as feather, hidden power capable of those very things she yearned to do when in pain but put down as soon as she was able. She is Death, she has seen and understood every aspect of Death and yet she has no need to bring on Death. She holds forgiveness, her compassion gently touches us with the naked light of presence aware.”

Once stagnation is broken in the sacred vessel of shadow, once the river is flowing freely, dreams of the Gods come quicker, our journeys clear in the slipstream of their inspiration. Then when we tell, we tell from a place of the Gods.

This is all I know and I pray for.

Releasing the Spell of Hope

Remember the Obama election campaign? There was something metaphysically astounding about the way that he evoked hope in the body of the American people. He said, “Yes, we can.” and millions of people believed him. Remember how ecstatic people were when it actually happened? Remember how dashed people felt a few years later?

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A lot of opinions can be had about what he did or didn’t do, but the truth lies that on the metaphysical level, Obama’s promise of hope had a condition. He said that he couldn’t do it without us. Yet many of us went back to sleep, hoping that the hardcore politicos would bear the burden. So things didn’t work out the way we hoped. I mean, a lot of good came, but it wasn’t all what we had hoped.

This morning I shredded the newspapers I’d saved of his election and inauguration days. Such bold text, headlines that took up a quarter of the page. I put the paper in a bed, lay some wood on top and lit it on fire.

Fly free, hope. No longer be bound to this spell. No longer be dashed. Return to sender, to make strong those that have not gone to sleep and those who have reawakened. Fly free back to those who are still dreaming in their sleep, that they may find what was lost once again.

There is always enough hope when we let go of the past.

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That Engine

I just finally got underneath the car and fixed it.
You know, that rattle, that pulling back when I am trying to move forward, that shaking, threatening to fall apart while I am distracted about what is on the road before me.

The adventures I have chosen have been filled with potholes to move around (dropped a wheel a few times), filled with close scraping branches (no bother until the scratches start to rust through), filled with high winds and some furious storms.

Well, I stopped the car and got underneath it and fixed the darned thing. And when I got up, wiped my hands on my jeans, a road opened up that was level and open. The sun shines down and the engine purrs and I think, “Wow I could’ve done it before.”

But I didn’t. So I did it now and the ride will be so much better now.

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Innocence

That seashell white. That clear space.
Innocence.

We are all innocent.
We will always be innocent,
that place inside us that sings, that wonders, that can’t make sense of unkindness.
That place that didn’t mean our own unkindness.

There is a space for our young child
we need to protect so that she/he may flower.

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The flower that risks so much,
without knowing it is risking, to be open and delicate.

Perhaps the blossom itself,
it’s own effect is what causes the world to leave be,
except the honey bees and humming birds,
kissing and propagating.

Our young child will grow,
find the wisdom in boundaries,
learn to protect

Yet our innocence remains.

Purity.

Lyrical.

Blessed in gentle play.

This, our most sacred self.

To not wield

The stillness stretches across the horizon and whispers without words,
with the force of emptiness so loud,
our every fiber can hear it.

“Listen.”

We have heard nothing, yet there is so much.
This silence so potent, the only true path, acceptance.

Allow ourselves to regain our strength.
Not the kind we put on the morning.
The kind that moves as we breathe, that breathes as we move.
The kind that we cannot feel, but moves others without our knowing.

We cannot begin out of folly. We cannot begin.
To begin now would be to return to the blindfold.

We gather. We wait.
There is more. It is coming.
We wait.

When the Veil

When the veil comes down, we are standing there like Innana, naked. Or maybe we are already turning on the spit.

What they don’t tell you about Innana is that by the time she gets to that point, she is so desperately relieved she could kiss the ground. She is sick of the long haul, the grasping for something, anything, the agony of loss – and she’s glad it’s finally all gone. Because now she can see that which could have never been taken. It is herself. And that undignified humiliation, that unbridled relentless unapologetic agony is what brings her to herself. She faces herself, and then she knows all that she has always known, this time without interference. And she thinks, “Holy crap. I am home”.

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And all that has been stripped, she knows she’ll never want back. Her jewels, her crown, if necessary will only be a prop for the real show that needs no casing. It is the people who need it to be encased in order for it’s rawness to be bearable to them. She can give them that. Such is the power of a woman.

And the veil to the outer world is torn down too. The antics of humanity, the circus show that has always tantalized in some way has now become a low hum because she no longer wants. She does not hunt. Her power, her nourishment is found, and she has become like the rocks, like the waterfall, like the moon. She channels the archaic ages of time and sips her tea while she watches. And she waits. She may try to trip us up once in a while hoping we may find our way to her, to keep her company, but she knows that no one can do that finding but ourselves.

Yes, we. We are all forces of nature, some to glow, some to build, some to sing, some to purge and some to awaken. Like waves crashing upon each other we greet, we encounter and we retreat to await the next surge. What will it be like next time? Will it be different? But who will we be? There is no other.

The wise woman, she breathes on the sea bed. She has seen it all. She has lived every form from hay flower to flea, from bat to snail. She has growled and been prey. She has birthed and she has lay down to die. She has loved and she has burned. She has prayed and crawled. She understands the value in things and the waste in trying.

The old woman, she is endlessly awake, her awareness our daylight, her dream-time our moon. And with her gaze she holds us all. She holds us with a love yet unfathomable.

The Grove of the Titans Need Your Help.

I’ve never posted the story of how I found a secret, ancient Redwood grove last summer because though the adventure was epic, part of the lesson I learned was how easy it is for the smallest of footprints made in utmost of earnesty could harm the delicate and precious floor of the forest, especially one made up of trees whose root systems grows wide, rather than reaching down.

I just didn’t want to encourage anyone else to go there.

But now there is finally an effort to raise money to build boardwalks and open it to the public. My heart sings and I encourage you to support these honorable forest protectors, in turn making this utmost sacred grove open to all to experience it’s glory. Even if you can only give ten dollars, please, I beg of you, consider looking here. https://redwoodparksconservancy.org/save-grove-titans

Standing in the Grove of the Titans was heaven come to earth. It was like Lothlorien. It was majesty personified.

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In my journey to find this magical place described in Richard Preston’s “Wild Trees”, I discovered that that it was not inaccessible to a middle aged woman with periodic knee issues. I didn’t believe at first that I would find it, which made me less attentive, so I spent a few days hiking in the wrong areas, on unrelated trails.

But I was possessed with the desire and call to go there, so I persisted, not knowing if my story might end with my body shutting me down.

I dreamt about it. I was empassioned. But I could not find the trail. Instead I used hints from previous travelers online and figured it would be a hidden trail. So I went off, over rotting logs, onto soft moss and at one point I stopped and with dread and regret, looking around me at the pristine land, knowing, seeing that every step I took left a mark. I thought “What have I done?” But I knew I was close and I was going to cause as much damage if I went back, so I continued forward.

Then crossing a small dry riverbed, I saw it. It is difficult to take in an Ancient Redwood because you cannot turn your head in any way to see the whole thing at once. Redwoods can grow to be over 300 feet tall so it’s like standing under skyscrapers of trees. Walls of trees. It’s impossible to eek out even a glimpse of the rare ecosystems that reside up in the cloud. Every tree is unique as a snowflake, or a human, each angle speaking, sharing a universe of spiritual mystery. It is an emotional experience, a humbling one at the very least. Each time I visit these forests, like any true pilgrimage, there is a long internal integration for me afterwards.

So there I was. I lavished. I listened. I revered.

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But no. I had heard that there were trees that most people never saw because the grove was kind of spread out. So what did I do? I had to follow a trail, that went up a 30 degree slope up to.. no where. I almost killed myself. I made track marks on the hill. I was completely possessed. It was too steep to go back down so I had to bushwhack over to a fallen giant and walk down it, but there were bushes growing over and I had a small pack and there was a 25 foot drop and I really almost killed myself there.

I couldn’t stop myself from such tree crimes and I was the biggest, baddest, bad tourist from out of state with selfishness and destruction in my two footed path.

And then I found the proper path back to the main trail, where a sign was waiting for me, reminding me of the damage I had done. There should have been someone there with handcuffs to send me to tree jail.

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I could barely walk anymore so when I got back to the road, I hitched a ride back to my car, at which time I found that I had lost my cell phone. Ugh. Arrghhh!!! It was…no where! No in my car, not in my pack.. I drove back to the trail head and barreled back up the trail even though my body had previously called it a day until it was getting dark and I had to go back.

The next morning, an older guy with a Harley at the campground let me use his phone to call my phone and I discovered that my phone was still on and ringing. Incredible, as most areas where out of signal reach. Some nice folks in an RV (those RV retirees are an interesting and likeable breed of their own) let me use their phone to learn all about the horrible iterations one must go through to cancel their account and get a new phone. aaa. Not ready yet.

I forced myself to get a burner phone from the one store where I have never purchased anything – the store that does so much damage to so many people, towns and ecosystems – Walmart.

Then the trials of getting the damned phone registered and running. And charged. I went back to the trail. The burner phone lost signal. I started playfully asking every creature I saw if they would help me find my phone. “Hey Mr. Frog! Hey Ravens! Hey! Can you help me find my phone?” I was desperate. I also believe in these sorts of things.

I had to go back to that bad place where I had gone off the trail and walk again in the area where I never wanted to walk again.. ahhh!!! I immediately found a food wrapper – you know the kind that you see in the woods and you think “who in the hell would litter in a place like this?” – that had fallen out of MY back pocket. My pocket! My pocket had a major hole in it! Going further, feeling like a complete idiot for being there at all, I knew this was senseless.

But a miracle happened. My eyes just fell on my hat, that I didn’t even know I had lost, and my phone, a few feet away. In the middle of NO WHERE. Where NO ONE would have EVER found it, in a million years. (well maybe 6 months now that I know what’s been going on) Wow.

It was over half-way to the trees, so I saw them again, travail over and was able to relax a bit. I actually saw them 3 times in a few days because one of the trees, my favorite was incredibly hidden only 50 feet off the main trail.

On my way to camp, I spent a significant amount of time trying to make the entrances from the main trail look hidden. Then I sent messages to the bloggers who have posted their clues, begging them to remove them. It was such turmoil, such embarrassment, such a jaw-dropping, awe-striking experience to be there. But I did return that useless burner phone back to Walmart.

And then it took me a good amount of time to digest the whole experience.

So I never told anyone. Well, I told my mom. And some close friends, but I didn’t tell them where or the name of the grove. These ancient ones are literally being loved to death.

But now there is a way to help them, so my heart sings with joy as I entreat you to join me in preserving this gem. This place on the planet like no other that can never be recovered in a thousand years. That is how old these trees very possible could be.

Even if you can only give ten dollars, please, I beg of you, consider looking here. https://redwoodparksconservancy.org/save-grove-titans

Much love to you and the trees.

Tasara

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