This is my voice–imagination, experience, emotion, and action becoming colour and mark and word. Energy into tangible object. Magic.
I am here before you, offering my heart, spirit, mind, and body as one, shaped into the marks on this page, paper, screen. Touch my drawing, touch my writing, and you touch me.
Here is the process of my seeing, the tracing of my thoughts. A conversation begun and passed to you. Here is my voice reaching to hear yours. Will you answer?
This is who I am. The translation of love into creativity.
This is who I am. Artist. Writer. Creator. Magician.
Let me hear your voice. Let the world hear your voice, the unique creative force that you are. A silent voice is no voice at all. A silent voice is a loss to all the world. Speak, draw, act, dance, write, compose, play, sing. Imagine. Create.
I’m in a store last Friday, standing in the cashier’s line. The place is busy and people are chatting as they wait. I’m not paying much attention to the hum. Then I hear someone close by me say something.
The nail that sticks out gets hammered.
Ouch. I’ve heard this saying before. It’s a warning. Don’t be different, don’t stand out, the words say. Stay small and quiet, in the crowd of everyone else who is staying small and quiet.
Fear. Be afraid. Hide, or you will get hurt.
Someone else’s saying. Not mine. Not any more.
I say, Be Love. Let Myself Shine.
I want to know all of the unique, loving being that is me. I want to surprise myself with the beauty I can create. If I hide I will never know these things.
Every day I give myself permission to be love, to let myself shine. Some days I’m not so shiny. I wake up afraid that who I am and what I create is not good enough to share, not good enough to exist in any visible way. I want to hide, fearful that I will be that nail that gets hammered down.
I don’t hide. Instead, I get out of bed and go into my studio. I sit down at my work table, and look around at all I have created. I let myself see and feel what I have brought into my life and then shared with the world. I touch all the things I’m in the midst of creating. I feel how much I love this process. How love becomes joy in the linking of marks to become shape, in the forming of words and sentences to become thought visible on the page.
The fear I feel vanishes in the face of all this love.
I am learning to do this, bit by bit, day by day. I am learning to give myself permission to feel love rather than fear, even when the world is telling me be afraid, don’t stick out.
I give myself permission. I choose.
Be Love. Let Myself Shine.
Happy Thanksgiving to all my friends in the US! Your friendship is such a gift! xo
Think The Wizard of Oz. The 1939 movie with Judy Garland as Dorothy.
Dorothy and Scarecrow and Tin Man are walking through a forest. It is creepy. The light is dim. They start talking about what might be hiding. Lions. Tigers. Bears. Oh no! They manage to scare themselves silly by the end of the scene, even though there are no lions or tigers or bears. The Cowardly Lion, who they eventually meet, is nowhere near scary.
This is what I have been doing the last two months. Scaring myself silly. Imagining lions and tigers and bears. Blocking the writing on my book.
I’ve been doing other things instead of my book. Useful good things, I tell myself. Yes, true, they are. But it is odd how I do those useful good things first, plan to get to my book writing second, and somehow never get there.
I’m watching this happen. Two months of watching and not doing. I can’t seem to break the pattern. I’m not choosing to. What is stopping me?
Over my years of creating, I have run myself into blocks and scared myself a lot. I see what’s happening and I find my way through. Every time. Except now.
I could blame it on the fact that this is my first experience writing the second draft of a book. I don’t know what to expect, don’t yet know my process for this kind of creating, or how long it might take me. I do know this long at not-writing is too long.
The wind is a wild thing today. Greedy. Careless. It woke me before light this morning, tearing the last of the leaves from the trees and throwing them at the walls of the house. The weather report tells me there is a hurricane southwest somewhere, stirring everything up.
It is later now. I am sitting in my car, parked by the lake, writing. I watch the wind. It’s shoving the surface of the lake, grabbing the waves and throwing them against the shore.
The birds don’t seem to care. They know the wind, and they are ignoring its tantrums. The ducks and loons have moved into the sheltered bay where the water lies calm. They paddle and dive for their breakfast. Chat among themselves about how warm the air feels for an October morning.
The gulls have taken to the air, wings wide. They love this crazy carnival wind. Let it toss them high and higher, then abandon them for other toys. The gulls roll and fall and rise again. I can hear them, and I am sure they are laughing and shouting dares at the wind. Do it again, higher!
I watch the water and the gulls. Hear the wind roar towards and past me. I am up there with the gulls, my wings wide. I love this wild wind. Let it pull at my clothes and my hair. Let it rock my car and toss leaves at my house. Let it throw its wild heart at me, daring me to catch it and pin it to the page with my words.
And so I have, and have not, for there the wind rises again. Whirls round me, laughs in my ear, and is gone.
Let my words be like this wind. Wild, careless, greedy. Laughing. A carnival, rising and rolling. Pulling and shoving and playing at everything in my life. Tossing my wild heart high and higher, daring me to throw my wings wide and shout, ”Yes, do it again! Higher!”
It is just past noon. I’m at the beach. Sun, blue sky, a diamond ocean. A perfect breeze. The smell of kelp and sea grass and hot beach stones. At the horizon, three boats at full sail.
Perfection and delicious joy.
There are others here too, sharing this beauty. Someone eating a slow lunch. Another reading. A quiet conversation carrying on the breeze. Two bike riders pausing on the road above the beach, and a bike that squeaks with each turn of the wheels as they leave.
I am an ocean baby, born in July as the summer began. My first beach day at a few weeks old, and every summer since.
I am home here. I feel it in the way my body relaxes and becomes present to all my senses. I feel it, my mind quieting, the river of thoughts slowing, stopping. Rest here, my heart says, be open. And I do, I am.
There are places that open me. Places that are physical or spirit or imagination. That open me to my biggest self, the one that has no lines, boundaries, walls, fences. The self that is connected to all, easily and gracefully, through joy, love, just being
I keep watch for the places in my life that open me. I know in these places my grandest ideas and creations come to me. The sparks that flash into sight, then stay and grow if I let them. They live here, waiting, in these places of connection.
And what is the spark that flashes into view today? Exactly these words I send to me and to you, about the perfect delicious joy of being here. Present, open, connected, and writing.
I read today that Kermit the Frog and Miss Piggy are breaking up their relationship.
I feel sad.
And then I laugh because Miss Piggy and Kermit are Muppets, not human beings. They are imagination and dreams, fabric and foam. My head tells me this, laughing at my silliness.
I laugh again, because my heart knows full well that the divine Miss P and her equally heart-elegant Kermy are very real. They are dreams made true.
My heart is wiser than my head. My heart doesn’t care what the world says about dreams and dreamers and imagination and pretend. That they are not practical, don’t exist, all airy-fairy silliness, false.
Dreams and dreamers and imagination and pretend are real. They are the spark, a bit of light peeking through that opens into something new. They are love, passion, and joy playing at what is possible. When I daydream about what I love and gives me joy, then ask what is possible, I am always answered.
I see my dream open up, adding to itself here and there, growing in detail. Possibilities. Spark attracting more sparks until the dream becomes idea. A true possibility that I can act on, step by step, create real in this world.
Start here, try this, Source whispers to me. And I do.
This is where Kermit and Miss Piggy come from. Sparks. Jim Henson and all who worked with him and all who continue to be Muppet dreamers believers creators. The sparks that keep popping into dreams, into pretend and play. That are seen and felt, loved and laughed over, imagined bigger. Step by step created real.
This is why I know the Muppets are real, and why I am sad for Miss P and Kermy and their break-up. Why I hope with all my heart they get back together again. They are friends and family. All the Muppets are. I love them. They are a gift, given by dreams and dreamers and imagination and pretend.