Friday, February 28, 2014

New Moon in Pisces, in the wee morning hours of Saturday, March 1st

My favorite astrologer Elsa Panizzon writes: "We start new things under new moons.  The new moon in Pisces asks a person to sacrifice. I think it’s interesting we’re headed into the Lenten season which is all about sacrifice and alms giving..."

I have been hiking through the woods near our tiny homes. The sun and the light through the trees helped lift my mood of churning and sadness. G. Jots needed the walk too, it's been a long winter of being cooped up in the Quonset for days and nights on end.

The New Moon in Pisces is in my 2nd House. "Give money[or something of value] to those in need," suggests my astrologer. Tomorrow I give away more medicine stories from The Safety Pin Cafe. Mythic remedy. It's what I have to give ... The walk in the woods gave me an inspiration for setting up the storytelling cafe as the season changes from winter to spring.

What intentions do you set for this new moon?

Tuesday, February 25, 2014

Simmering story, unwrapping the gift of ancestral memory

"Entering the world of ancestral memory requires a certain mindset. Take time to enjoy and understand each phrase or line before going on. Remember, this gift took many lifetimes to wrap. Don't be in a hurry to unwrap it and become frustrated in doing so. The meaning and force of the ancestral knowledge will unfold precept upon precept, and each has a code to inspire you on to the next level." - from the Preface of Ka Honua Ola by Pualani Kanaka'ole Kanahele

"I believe in aristocracy -- if that is the right words and if a democrat may use it. Not an aristocracy of power, based on rank and influence, but an aristocracy of the sensitive, the considerate, and the plucky. Its members are to be found in all nations and classes, and through the ages, and there is a secret understanding between them when they meet. They represent the true human tradition, the one permanent victory of our queer race over cruelty and chaos. Thousands of them perish in obscurity, a few are great names. They are sensitive for others as well as themselves, they are considerate without being fussy, their pluck is not swankiness but the power to endure, and they can take a joke."
- E.M. Forster (1899-1970) This quote re-posted here from Terri Windling's blog Myth and Moor
Just over a year ago I began gathering the story that is The Joy Weed Journal. There were parts of the story already alive and well: the characters and the flavor of a mythic journey had begun in the first of medicine stories called The Safety Pin Cafe. The medicine and magic that connected old memories and timeless practices were at work and partnering with the Muse. There was no stopping the process, but at the same time, there was no rushing it. Like making an old-fashioned bone broth for a nourishing soup the story would need to be simmered to render its goodness.

The thing that happens when one is living a life that is truly yours ... it will not be as you expected it.  “You must give up the life you planned in order to have the life that is waiting for you.” ― Joseph Campbell. Living the practice and protocol of an elder-in-training, a makua o'o, the tools are available to me and the principles show themselves to me in daily interactions, dreams, and feelings.
  • I notice things. Separated from Hawaii as I am by physical space, the deep rooted-ness of my ancestors views the distance as illusion; I am given connections through my work and kuleana as writer, cook and mother. Three parts to very sustaining life.
  • Patiently I listen for the heartbeat of my culture that travels distance and time with ease. 
  • Asking for clarity I navigate the internet with an eye for connections, and find the photo of a ritual ho'okupu gift-giving ceremony (above) to illuminate and pin one thing to another.
  • Softening the ground of my being I soften to the possibilities to tell a story that make universal connections; common magic, mythic journeys
  • Sensitive to my human shortcomings and limitations I am vulnerable yet open to support from others and that becomes another gift.

While I have been busy simmering the story of The Joy Weed Journal the posts here at Makua O'o have been lean. If you'd like to read more about the simmering  go here.

Monday, February 17, 2014

Mercury is retrograde through February 28, 2014

I'm up and writing very early this Monday morning. The wind is blowing through the trees outside. I have the Quonset door open, to hear their songs and feel the cool air on my bare feet. The flannel is down across the opening tempering my exposure to the damp air. The sky is dark, JOTS is asleep on the top of the frig after a bit of a stretch, and a scratch on her very itchy self. A drip from the faucet keeps time to the windsong as I filter our drinking water while I write.

Most of my attention for writing throughout the month of February has been on the process of being with the medicine story The Joy Weed Journal. It's a new process of showing the story to a handful of people -- an audience. We engage in the give-and-take of art in the making. Though I wasn't thinking of it consciously, the process is a wonderful way to make use of Mercury's retrograde (reviewing). Satori over on ElsaElsa wrote this about the sky today:

"... Mercury squares Saturn and trines Mars. Going over your recent work to catch outstanding details that have gone awry is a great use of this energy. They’ll likely stick out like a store thumb and it should go quickly. It will go quickly once you get started and get to really working on it...
I thought it was fun to see that sometimes the fun of art is in the back and forth rhythm of things: nature doesn't travel in a straight line. Something new is taking place (that's Uranus' job) and unexpected outcomes happen. Loosening my grip on what a story wants to say has opened a door to being more willing to get the help I need. Anything like that happening in your world?

Photo credit: The beautiful image is the intricate and amazing fiber art lace work "Can't see the forest for the trees" by Rachel M Gardner.

Monday, February 10, 2014

There's only one thing that you gotta remember

"There's only one thing that you gotta remember
/Every thing in this world is either a brother or sister ..."

Nests in winter in a town near-by
I'm reading a book by Charles De Lint Someplace to be flying. The tickle line/title for this post that prompts the morning of writing  is from De Lint's song Cherokee Girl. Both his book set in an imaginary town much like urban Ontario where De Lint lives and the song written in Tuscan for his friend and mythic writer-editor-artist Terri Windling were probably written around the same time, late 1990's. De Lint is a Canadian writer and musician, someone I discovered while Pete and I lived in my family homestead on O'ahu. It was his book The Forest of the Heart that tapped into my internal stream bed of creativity sniffing out a different form of expression. De Lint is a writer of modern myth and timeless connections with every thing in this world being either a brother or sister. At the time I began reading The Forest of the Heart I needed to make peace with my wandering nature and the forms of expression that I figured were not-right. It would take me more living to discover this possibility "wonder, but not worry."(another expression from one of De Lint's characters).

De Lint's characters often include the world of crows, familiarity with Cody (coyote) and expressions of Raven. His work is described as "urban fantasy", I wonder about the tag for his characters' world feeds my growing everyday life with the bird people and the Nature of things. We live with the forest and sleep in a curved room with windows that allow wind and moon and the moving roots to push at the borders of memory. Raven wakes us daily and I holler back at him to let him know, "I hear."

The rats eat out of the feed bowls down in the chicken yard. In the snowy yesterday the chickens refused to walk through the color white stuff, perched on the boards of the compost. My son and I watched, talked with the birds and the rats wore the well-run path from the old coop to the bowl. One of them, one of the rats, truly 'ratty' with patches of hair missing. In a story I have told the rat, "i'ole" is a much maligned creature. But in that same tale it is the rat that finds the horde of food cached in a net dangling in the sky. Secured from the reach of every thing of this world except for the greedy patriarch, the net held every thing there was to eat. Only the rat, much maligned but committed to feeding his starving family made his way in collaboration with the coconut tree, the wind, a cloud and a rainbow. His sharp claw tore a hole in the dangling net, and his long and agile tail allowed him to cling as all the stores of food fell to the starving every body below.

In the civilian world the rat and the Raven don't sit at the table. But there is that internal stream bed that has room for every body. Sometimes I find my way there. It may take a lifetime to sort through the jumble and the trinkets of living in harmony with every time, every body and every thing. Maybe several lifetimes. The clues for what is important come in all sorts of places, and the cycles turn up again if one is awake and aware of the patterns: some things change, but some things stay the same.

E kuhikuhi pono i na au iki a me na au nui o ka 'ike.
Instruct well in the little and the large currents of knowledge
In teaching, do it well; the small details are as important as the large ones.
-'Olelo No'eau

Beach walking 1973

Beach walking 2014

Tuesday, February 4, 2014

February glimpses and guidance

Horoscope for February, 2014

Aquarius (Jan. 20-Feb. 19)
Something is shifting for you on a deep inward level, which may feel like the healing of a kind of isolation or loneliness that has followed you around for a while. This has taken you a step closer to your soul, just when you were wondering if such a thing was even possible....
 Scorpio (Oct. 23-Nov. 22)
It’s essential for your well-being to sort out what influences in your life are nourishing and which are depleting...The most common reason I’ve seen people abandon their power is because it seems to offer liberation from the consequences of their own mistakes. That’s one form of liberation that will never serve you. - Eric Frances

My attention is focused on family and the showing of my new medicine story The Joy Weed Journal. Pete and JOTS and I are looking forward to some time with my son. He is in Washington sorting and addressing the paperwork and bureaucracy of American/France laws. His wife is French, and in France. He is not French, and is here. To be in the same place at the same time is the goal. We malama their process, and I thaw out oxtails for soup tomorrow.

Showing my new story to an intimate audience, as well as an anonymous group of readers is a different approach for this storyteller. I am enjoying the feedback from the audience and we both learn to exchange feelings and impressions using the internet as a stage: it's refreshing and a welcome next step in the art.

Astrology as a tool for navigating and creating offers me clues to process and progress. The snips of February horoscopes above, from Eric Frances, give me at least two angles to be with February. The Aquarius view feeds my Progressed Sun, now in Aquarius for just a year. I'm just getting used to the fit of Aquarius. Born a Scorpio, the horoscope from Frances makes sense because it touches the familiar journey of my life.

Family and story, good for the first week of the Year of the Horse. And for you?