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Pesto Making

basilThe philosophical dilemma of making Pesto……

As I pick the basil leaves I thank them, they basilness with every separation. – and I find myself enjoying that beautiful basilly smell. Then I remember that the point of that smell (and taste) is to avert predators….Now I am the predator.

 

The Basil’s smell is intensifying in the heat. I am encouraged by it’s loveliness to override my empathy for their demise at my hands; I am torn though and upon finishing my harvest, I make a deal with myself. I’ll leave the outdoor basils to grow on and feed my bees with their prolific flowers; the glasshouse ones will be cut back – it’s still hot enough in there that they will get a second chance to express their beauty and abundance to all.

 

I back away, bowing low and rush inside to the kitchen to start blitzing….That word says it all! My only choices here are to be deeply grateful to the basil deva for her yummy gift and to sing her praises to one and all. Oh, and to enjoy that Pesto like its gonna be my last meal!

 

El Camino

foxgloveRecently I went to the movies to watch “Walking the Camino”. It was the penultimate screening and we had the theatre almost entirely to ourselves. This is how I like it, the dark, the quietening of the breath and the unfolding of the story. As I listened to the stories of the half dozen people (out of many) who were sharing their experience, I was waiting to feel the yearning rise up within me to follow in their footsteps. The idea of travelling light; letting go and confronting change on a daily basis all hold much allure. The transformative experiences abounded and were shared with depth and humility.

Searches for the meaning of life, a new better way to be sat alongside the yearning to connect. One young woman bought her small son and her brother. Her dream; that her brother would grow to understand her Christian values and they would become closer. Loss was also present in the stories of those who had died and were still being grieved. All of the stories continued to unfold along with the road and the vista beckoning the pilgrim onward.

The stories were heart warming. Yet, throughout the whole movie the most powerful player was Nature herself.  In sun and rain the natural world stood out; the bedewed blades of grass; leaves lime green in their newness. Heather, in thick rich banks adorned the roadside,    urging me to reach out and run my hands through it.

I know I would never survive the walk; the shared sleeping dormitories alone would be the end of me. I am a light sleeper and often only manage 4-5 hours a night – in the quietest of spaces. I am not physically able to walk the 790kms, my body would teach me a lesson in humility never to be forgotten. Such beauty along the Way, I would love to experience that; I’d take the chance to immerse myself in it wherever it appeared.

It was almost at the end of the movie; the young women had fallen out with her brother. He had misbehaved – his Pan-ness had offended her values. He wasn’t taking it at all seriously and so she drove him away, thereby negating her original desire for connection.  Poor thing, she was trying so hard to be a good/godly pilgrim. He didn’t seem concerned at all. It seemed to me that he was inherently panentheistic and she was – a fundamentalist!

His lightness of spirit captured me and spoke to the mood that had overtaken me as I drank in the scenery. Right then the camera followed the curving stem of a foxglove, honouring each individual flower. From somewhere deep inside me powerful emotion welled up; the thought “I bow before you” sprang into my mind and my heart opened. For me, all the joy of the Camino was represented in that one sinuous curve.

I know that I walk my own inner Camino every day. The Nature mystic in me takes me on many varied and challenging paths. I hope I walk them in humility; staying connected to all the glory of the natural world, grounding myself in Her.

There is always a gift along the road. A dappled glade, a glorious sunset, a field of wheat moving in a gentle breeze. All these expressions of the Divine enliven me and fill me up so that, just like a pilgrim who reaches Finisterre I am filled with joy and deep peace.

Oh Heavens!

Like an arctic lake turned upside down

the bowl of the Heavens

curves above me, clear blue.

No thing mars its cerulean majesty

and set within it like a  scintillating gem

the yellow sphere of the sun.

The gardener in me smiles

in tee shirt sleeves she works steadily and with deep gratitude

for this clearest, cleanest most crystalline of days.

Peace inhabits body, mind and garden

joy resounds in every bird call and gently dancing flower

Eden exists, right here, right now.

The Wheel Turns

Black DragonWe’ve just experienced the equinox this week and along with it the usual equinoctial gales. It now finally begins to feel that Spring is here; for some time now we’ve lived with t he dry bones clatter of the death Goddess as she moves through bare branches on a chill wind, shriveling the life out of any new and tender growth.

So it was with joy and anticipation I listened and finally heard the first call of the shining cuckoo a few days ago; the most reliable of harbingers. I trust then that Mother Nature is awakening from her winter’s rest once again. My eyes don’t deceive me either for that Great Lady is now covering her bones with garments of every green imaginable; gauzy limes layered over soft velvety olives and an underskirt of dark glossy greens.

Everywhere there is urgency as birds court flirtatiously and build nests of all manner of wondrous finds. Twigs, feathers, fur and lichen are woven with skill and grace. The call to spend time outside overcomes my concern for wet ground underfoot; a couple of sunny days and all will be dried out once again.
Now as the wisteria racemes begin to unfurl their blossoms revealing a delicious scent I am beguiled and know that I must bow my head in honour of this glorious turning of the wheel.

Beauty & Peace

Golden sun ranunculus

This morning I looked out the window and a tiny dewdrop winked and blinked at me, its scintillating corona shifting and changing from moment to moment.  I breathed in its diamond bright message, thanked it and began my morning regime.

Later as I lay practicing the yin portion of my exercise sunlight streamed in onto my face; I immediately felt embraced by an intense heat and as I relaxed into it my awareness expanded to embrace the sound of the wind in the trees and a sensation of powerful energy suffused my whole body. I felt deeply held and continued to relax into the experience, my whole world becoming light and heat and sound. I lay bathing in these sensations for some time, noticing how odd thoughts would pop up – and I saw with great clarity the struggle of my ego to resist the total letting go into the experience. Such beauty and peace and there I was thinking “what if it doesn’t  last” and “how will I ‘make’ myself surrender fully?”  As these things do, it did end and I lay feeling very blessed, smiled to myself at the silliness of my ego and its delusions, gave thanks and went on with my day.

Special Delivery

dewdrop
I catch you out the corner of my eye
a gently fluttering leaf,
bejeweled.
Sunlight captured in perfect oval,
rainbow-sparkling you blink
a Morse code message angel-delivered
“I love you”
“I love you”

For Paula

Michaelia doltsopa ‘Silver Cloud’

When our loved ones let us down remember, we’re not alone. This is how I know…

This morning I’m sitting in a sheltered place out of the brisk westerly; I feel the Mother’s sun-kiss on my face and warm tendrils of pleasure unfurl within my body. I lay back relaxing and opening to receive the kiss, the  loving touch of the Divine Feminine reminding me of her Prescence.  All is well, time stands still and my heart beats in a slow gentle cadence.  A tui sings out, its sharp tones travelling far in the clear winter air, the voice of the Goddess, proclaiming joy. As the sun warms all around the lemony scent of Michelia doltsopa ‘Silver Cloud’ reaches me and I breathe in; I bow my head in honour of her gracious gift.  I feel such connection in this moment, a gentle radiant peace.  At my feet our Manx cat, Lilith, rests curled in sleep; wise creature that she is. Don’t expect us anytime soon world, we may be here for a while.