The Wanderer

My daughter and I just returned from Ireland. Yes, Ireland is beautiful, friendly and the roads are small and curvy. As travelers we were strangers in a strange land. As such, we approached each encounter and person with curiosity and respect. Traveling slowed us down. Not just driving on the “wrong” side of the road, from the “wrong” side of a car (with a stick shift on my left); being a stranger in a new place slowed me down. Everyone and everything was unfamiliar. A good traveler relies on attentiveness (Lydia navigated our entire trip; it took two to drive through country and city). When … Continue reading

Please pass the Salt, by guest blogger (and poet) Rebecca Cecchini

My heart is full of gratitude these days for my many teachers. Particularly those passers-on of the gifts – tools of learning, of insight, or compassion, and sometimes literally of survival, those teachers on whom Wisdom relies from age to age. It’s no wonder wisdom is personified in our many traditions throughout history. It is, by nature and in fact, a living, breathing, entity. “Through us, with us, in us”… we all are gatherers and keepers of that “salt” which permeates not only our points of joy, but which also falls through the cracks in our lives, to make use … Continue reading

Getting Lost in Your Writing

When I tell people this summer’s mother daughter trip is to Ireland they inevitably ask, “What made you choose Ireland?” For those who don’t ask the inevitable question they inevitably say, “I’ve been there and it’s one of the most beautiful places on earth.” My response to the question is the skinny truth, being that there isn’t a lot of depth and mystery here. I wanted to visit a place that would take me overseas and one that was user-friendly. I also let my daughter choose; and the images of Ireland called to her too. So, I ignored my fear … Continue reading

Stop All The Clocks

I live in a beautiful community. I witnessed this again with hundreds gathering for a vigil over the recent death of a young man, a classmate of my daughters. We just gathered, lite candles, walked the football field in silence where Beau, the young man had played high school football. Beau’s death is unbelievable, unexpected, tragic and a crime, all at once. We will likely feel shock, fear, confusion, deeper and longer than from other deaths. This loss is unbearable. Grief from murder is not the same as grief to other losses. We are in shock. We are grieving. Yes, we … Continue reading

After The Final No

After the final no there comes a yes And on that yes the future world depends.                          – Wallace Stevens I led my first book, Hidden Victims Hidden Healers with this verse from Wallace Stevens.  I chose it to remind myself, and the reader, that there is a yes there, somewhere. You know as well as me, life is full of various versions of “NO:” rejections, pit falls, mistakes, losses, disappointments, misses, and more rejections. With the above book it took three years to find a publisher and I could have wallpapered my … Continue reading

Keep It Simple Writers’ Circle

Keep It Simple: Monthly Writers’ Circle Begins October 12th, 2016 We will meet monthly for a year. Meets the second Wednesday evening of the month in Prairie du Sac, 20 minutes west of Madison. 595 Water Street, upstairs 5:30 till 8:30. $25.00 a night. One year commitment. I Will take up to 10 writers. I will read and critique three of your pages a month. (an $18 value). We will meet once a month at Healing Services on the River in Prairie du Sac on the SECOND Wednesday of the month. You will be given time each night to read up to 5 … Continue reading

A Writing Prompt from Me and T.S. Eliot

Make your own Bible. Select and collect all the words and sentences that in all your readings have been to you like the blast of a trumpet.  –Ralph Waldo Emerson Every writer needs a bit of prompting at times. I have several techniques and explorations that help us write when we have fooled ourselves into believing we are stuck. I find that there is never “writer’s block,” when we are in conversation with the world around us. There is always something to write about. When I can’t seem to move forward on a particular idea I either write on something else, go … Continue reading

Give Your Words a Place To Go

On my morning walks I commit to a certain destination out to a broken tree, which is about 2 miles from my home. This way, since I hold my destination at 2 miles out, I am sure to have a 4 mile walk. In some ways I trick myself into commiting to walking 4 miles, having to walk the two miles back. In my upcoming Write-By-The-Lake retreat and workshop through the UW, Madison, we focus on giving our words a place to go on the page, and then, our pages a place to go once written. Through developing a Rainbow Theme Arc with our chosen … Continue reading

Are You A Tiger or a Fox?

“The modern dogma is comfort at any cost.” -Aldo Leopold, A Sand County Almanac There are eleven pithy slogans that can be used as practice points and reminders of living the zero point agreement, which is to live life from your side; to live life from the inside-out.  These are not exhaustive or to be used as clubs. They are simply pointers, references to help in being the cause rather than the effect of our life. Each of these are brought out throughout the book, The Zero Point Agreement but can be more quickly referenced here. Pithy intentions, slogans, and principles can redirect the mind, in the … Continue reading

True, Truer, Truest

“The kind of truth that matters does not make itself known to those who shout for it to come out and then try to batter down the door. The truth that matters must trust us before we can have a relationship with it.” Parker, The Promise of Paradox I celebrate disappointment. My disappointments met as a Spiritual Friend are openings to other possibilities, to something Spirit-handed. I trust this place of disappointment and discouragement as a threshold and doorway to what can emerge. I wanted “this”, but got “that.” This is true. Truer yet is that something always waits on the … Continue reading