power and glory


let us hop in and play 
turn the tables into chairs the saucers into cups 
the flat into an ashram and a dream into reality.

find the off button and use it
pick up the broadcast of wind and stars
nod to the trees whispering 
lie on the ground
attend your breath 
feel the sun on bare flesh
the slide of water on skin
watch clouds
leaves change colour
notice bees fly 
hear birds singing.

toot toot
climb aboard the earth train
pausing at all stations 
let go of the clock the week the timetable the news the feeds the lattes.

break the habit of thinking of worry of talking
pause
breathe again.
make the moment your ally
it will hold your hand
comfort you
always be there for you .

the moment of Presence never fails
never leaves you,
it is your power and glory 
your hope and redemption
your canvas and paintbrush 
ready to receive your mark 
of the blueprint of you as divine being.

loving kindness

The old story built on lies
forced down peoples throats
regurgitated and deified
swallowed and perpetrated
becomes ever more nasty.

australia today

The people are the problem
if only they would behave
if only they would tow the line
stay in their place
of servitude , lip service and compliance.

australia today

we The People serve
serve the Truth
The Light of The Divine
The Most Holy of Mysteries
that which animates our Breath
and whispers in our Heart.

Earth today

We may have been born slaves
but consciousness evolves
we hold the space for Truth to Shine
for Love to Embrace
for Light to Radiate.

Earth today

Take cover bullies
your run is over
lies crumble to chalk
under the spotlight
of The Sword of Truth.

It is shameful
the misinformation lies bullying mandating censorship
the rubber bullets and pepper spray
the denial of liberty
in what has been referred to as a democracy.

When it is said it is for our own good
we know from past experience
from the lessons of history
that we are being lied to.

9 million died under the purge of witches-
wise women healers midwives mothers
tortured and exterminated
because malicious forces invented stories of devil worship.

And so we pray:

May all Beings be peaceful
May all Beings be happy
May all Beings be safe
May all Beings awaken to the light of their true nature
May all Beings be Free.





lock down lock up lock on

Sunday south east coast NSW Australia

first day of lockdown
I tell the magpies
spread the word
flocking together is banned
a tilt of the head
a quizzical look
throat opens and a ripple of pure sound pours forth.

I tell the bush rats they have to leave
we are only allowed five visitors or is it none?
hard to keep up with “The Rules”
too bad they answer
stealing another cake of my homemade soap from the washbasin.

gosh not much interest in the forest
no social distancing in the bottle brush
forget sanitiser
and masks look plain ridiculous on birds
so…….
a human only affair then.

the hills rivers clouds in the sky
continue Being
the raven flies across the valley
calling out
frogs at the dam chorus rain is coming
next door Warren and the tractor are busy.

how many realities are there?
what if there is no one size fits all?
what if it is a mosaic of brilliant orchestrated pieces
interconnected in a design we are unable to fathom?
what if this moment of breath is what we own?
And what if we are co-creating this lockdown drama?

what then?



the peach blossom acknowledging spring is here.

hello

it has been a while has it not
since we last met up,
here we are – once again in a circle holding hands .
the faerie embassy is emerging from its winter snuggy unfurling into a windy spring.
welcome swallows are renovating a nest on the mud wall outside the kitchen
daffodils nod in brilliant yellows around the yard
tiny swollen blossom buds on the one surviving peach tree are almost fit to burst .
the grey shrike thrush sings
magpies strut about on the verandah
stand on the back of the rocking chair and carol
look in thru the glass door at us
begging in a very proud and aristocratic way.

the heart tenderness of spring
new life rising – poignant bitter sweet in a forest deep in recovery after the fire
the regeneration is fierce, weeds prolific and many dead trees to remind us of the blaze.

Poem

Death comes knocking at her door
unprepared innocence answers
a beloved companion does not return
grief surges without tidal restraint
and the day is no longer a friend.


Tragically Chloe guide dog for 8 years to daughter Elsie died
words cannot fill the hole
sadly Chloe chose to leave on Elsies birthday
it reminds how precious every moment we share with our beloveds is.


code red humanity
code red
obviously we needed to hear it again

we needed it to be spelt out loud and clear
if ever there was a time to make some changes now is the hour
.



Poem

Unseen

by the shining Sea we sit
in liquid silence of silver light
unseen the stars weave a quilt
our breath a stitch holds on tigh
t.

by the shining Sea we pray
regret and suffering come to rest
yin and yang circle around
hearts remember all are blessed.

by the shining Sea we are
immersed within the golden mean
a Song emerges from the stars
and we who Sing remain unseen.

may the light of the divine guide us all

Sandra
xx


sailing the seven seas

months have tripped by and life has been unravelling stitch by stitch
only to be scooped up examined and mended where possible.
post fire life has taken on a different quality
and explanations are poor affairs when integration and trauma
wrestle for space.

Here’s a tale ( but not all is told)
of a man with a mission
a dream realised
of bravery high drama and fortitude
of inspiration and love.

We had been waiting for hours
finally a sighting,
a white sail bobbing on a big swell
crossing the foaming horses galloping into Horseshoe bay.
a week since leaving Botany Bay
My beloved is almost home.
the wind threatening
will not allow hats scarves or the use of binoculars
hair stinging against cheeks.

Kingston wants to sit in the car
play with his ipod.
Why love?
its windy grandma.
heaven help me
look here comes grandad
he doesnt realise
having an adventure at 73
turning your world upside down
sailing an ocean
tackling your fears
giving up comforts
hang on a minute,
he has a teapot and cosy
chocolate cheese and paisley curtains
books and charts on bulging shelves
a feather pillow for sweet dreams.

Sailing past the heads
where is he going grandma?
just checking out the bar love
no room to get this wrong
not on this wild day.

Midsummer blood sport in Bermagui
a crowd on the cliff top
on a ferociously windy day
watching the trawlers, pleasure boats, fisherfolk
bump and wobble cross the bar,
ooohs and aaahhs chasing.

A tiny 24 foot blue boat
Telemachus
remember him
son of Penelope and Odysseus,
went looking for his dad
found him, they teamed up
and beheaded all of Mums suitors.

The ocean thrashing around
wind scudding and bold,
Telemachus is caught out on the turn
lurches and leans over,
Kingston squeals grabs me
they are designed to roll I say
heart in mouth.

come on love you can do it
you’re home love you can do it
some madwoman is screaming
oh gosh that was me.

All round us people are jabbering
phones clicking videos streaming
mad as a cut snake this bloke
why doesn’t he put his engine on?
has he got a phone?
goddess help me
sever their heads.

The pitching blue boat lines up the bar
hand fixed to tiller
white sail snapping in the wind.
Telemachus rises up
bounces falls rises again
catches a single moment of calm
and sails elegantly through the heads
into the harbour.
he nailed it grandma.
indeed he did.

Thunderous applause claps and cheers
from awed bystanders
puzzles the tired captain.



all the way from Sydney to Bermagui
our hero and no suitors to behead.
January 25, 2021.

In choosing we Dream tomorrow

rising up like waves activists
press against the bastion
eroding sharp edges
flaking chipping away,
the wall remains sealed
holding tight
against the change agents.

anyone who has ever been part of a movement of protest
knows the drill,
hours days nights plans maps letters
bright ideas, fundraising
tears dramas court cases,
years flowing like the river
banks ever changing,
where once a pool now a sandbar
where once a gurgling rapid now a reedy swamp.

grey hairs threaten
exhaustion depletion anger
ptsd despair depression,
until …
run walk away give up fighting
become a baker or a plumber
retire take up gardening
drink a beer knit a blanket
.

and still after all the blood sweat and tears 
the brilliant campaigns
the lock ons tree sits marches
meetings with politicians
bumper stickers
signs of hope
minor victories
changes in legislation,
the bastion remains.
greater technology deadlier weapons,
coveting more and more Earth
a seeming impenetrable nightmare of coercion and profit.

some activists change stories
slip sideways
stop pushing against
return, reduce the scale to one life
theirs
one choice……. theirs
one hope……. theirs
and from one breeds many.

the virus teaches us this
infection spreads
ever widening its circle of influence.

a smile thrown to a crowd returns
a story spoken around breakfast whispers over social media
a piece of art, a quilt, a poem,
teases and stretches
melding into cells and blood vessels
strengthening resolve
soliciting further inquiry
enabling contagious spontaneous bursts of action
for the benefit of…
for the Whole.

2021 begins
active aware creative open hope full 
in choosing we Dream Tomorrow.

one year on

one year ago this day we were in Merimbula visiting Zoe Kean and Frankie, Kingston was with us. Frankie was four then , Kingston nine and not feeling well – sore stomach – probably anxiety – living in a thick atmosphere of smoke and threat of fire over many weeks.
Zoe checked ‘fires near me’.com – the Badja fire was growing bigger – time for us to leave.
Back home we prepared – roof swept, gutters cleaned out with rags stuffed in the ends to hold water, pumps filled with petrol, hoses connected around the house spraying water over verandahs, sweeping tidying gathering  – on and on it went under thickening smoke with black embers dropping into existence above our heads.
Last summer was hot and dry so very different to this years cooler temperatures, heavy cloud cover, drizzly misty with exciting afternoon storms and green green green, dams full and rivers gurgling. The scarring of the fire on the ranges is still very evident , a bald look with a stubble of charred pencil trees standing lonely in once was forest.
We laid out clothes selecting wool long sleeves heavy soled boots, tried on our new beaut face masks made adjustments, checked the app repeatedly, listened to ABC radio, drank cups of tea, ate some dinner, gave everything a good soaking and went to bed. In the middle of the night a fierce Roaring woke us – on our bedroom verandah facing west we came to the realisation that we could hear the Fire.
Kinda like sitting in a 747 revving up on the tarmac maybe louder.
Hopped in the car and beetled out of our forest through Christa’s paddocks to vechiles, a ridge top with views east south west ,meeting our neighbour Keith Fish out for a look. The sky was lurid- oranges pinks yellows blacks – a sickening mix and swirl of colours that looked wrong maybe 25-30 km west of us- a monster blaze – huge flames visible. I don’t know what we discussed with Keith – good luck probably fingers xxx, back to bed and sleep.
Waking again around 4 am – another listen – yep still roaring though perhaps not as loud ,another drive out to vechiles – this time the sky a murky blanket , activity difficult to spot and for those brief moments I thought that the blaze has gone behind Wandella mountain away from us and our valley.
Wrong wrong wrong.
I checked fires near me.com saw the evacuation alert for Cobargo – rang the daughters – leave now. There had been no preparation for this , no inkling that a village could or would go up in flames. The baby was only 2 weeks old.  And so through fire and flames on either side of the road the two families along with hundreds of other people made their way to Bermagui. There beside the ocean under a malevolent sky and air so putrid with smoke that breathing was difficult they were befriended and given a place to stay. Kind souls poured out of their homes to help the refugees.
Even now we all experience a timeless disassociation where we cannot fit the events into a linear time frame, where our trauma racked minds and bodies slide off images and grasp uselessly at memories that float just out of reach.
Satisfied they were safe – little did we know the fire was already eating the village of Cobargo – we decided on a cuppa and toast rather than bed but before we could raise a cup John felt the pull to start the pump down at the dam and I masked up. By the time John returned hoses were squirting water onto our verandahs and fires were slowly creeping into our bush munching ferns grasses vines, whooshing up trunks of trees, crackling snapping rumbling.
A few times I crept down the track from the house to watch the fires journey  on the other side of the dam. There is a fascination with fire –it is a mystery, a wonder, an attraction, something impels us to move closer to it – we cannot grab it but within its flames are worlds dreams and visions that beckon some primal instinct within us. And yet when we get too close it becomes a menace a monster a flaming scary beast.
The shack near the dam caught alight-  windows shattering metal roof screaming – a motorbike in cold storage exploded – and so the fire moved inexorably closer and closer engulfing everything in its path. The house filled with smoke – I realised that if the fire didn’t get me asphyxiation might. I had heard the stories of oxygen being sucked out of the air ahead of the fire and how the very air can combust far in advance of flames and heard too of  firestorms that are like tornadoes twisting and uprooting trees cars buildings and flinging them for miles. We watered as the fire rained down upon our home ;embers flying, gardens and sheds burning, gas bottles exploding.
I had lit a candle on the altar, incense and prayed – ask and ye shall receive it is said and so it is and so it was that I was answered held and safe.  
I am not an island alone eking out a physical existence – there is a whole journey behind and ahead of me , lineages of ancestors and wisdom keepers, a universal web of connections to which I and You belong.  If it was my time to depart then I would not be writing this story – instead I lived to tell the tale again; with deep deep gratitude in my heart and body for still having this shelter, this beautiful mud brick castle I call home – this beautiful family of friends children grandchildren, this beautiful forest that burnt and lives regenerating generously with grasses vines flowers and plants I have never ever seen before.
I take the example of this forest and apply it to my life – its capacity to hold and to give, its courage and humility, its fearlessness and innate strength of Being,

One year on :
still dwelling in a choppy sea of emotions as we make our way , as we endeavour to return to lives forever changed by this experience. If there are lessons to be learned from this it is about how we care for each other and how we care for the earth. There is no separation – as we do to each other so we do to the Earth.
There has been enough cruelty and suffering. We know we can do better; that we are light as well as dark and bloom best under kindness and good will . This new year let us reflect on the light we see within each other on the care we take with each other and the love we share.

Namaste
Sandra
xx

…inside the joy of another

Frankie is
seriously kooky
a character actor
a ragtag fun charged giggle
expert at play .
At four and a half she says

‘when I grow up I want to be a Koala’.
well ‘hallelujah’ I say.
At last, at long last perhaps the tide is turning
and humanity is growing up.

She wants to be a koala not a pop star or a teacher,
not a doctor or engineer, not a pilot banker or farmer .
Among all the influences of her first four years
it is Koala that grabs her attention.
We guess she will grow out of this notion
but what a great aspiration,
what a truth of the relevance importance significance and
worthiness of our Kin.


There is some thing irresistibly sweet about this
that amid the drama acting out
increased weaponisation of space land and sea,
this solid determination to be enemies,
a small child sees another picture.
One in which we share the planet with the koala
in which there is no divisive separation,
no compelling reason not to choose a life among the tree tops;
hanging around in the fork of a branch chewing eucalyptus leaves.

Life is lived in these moments
the moment when we see inside the joy of another
when it comes bursting out and knocks our senses with its purity.

I love that I am witness to the comings goings and doings of the many Beings that have no vote no pension card no shares no credit card.

The gate of our enclosed vege garden was left open and while we were busy with our lunch two goannas ventured in. Fat guts as Greg calls it (featured below) chases the smaller goanna around -trampling the peas broadbeans silver beet carrots cabbages and broccoli- absolute wreckheads round and round lifting their heads up against the wire trying to find the way out. John places a duck egg outside the gate – we sit and watch – eventually fat guts lumbers out and snaffles the egg – no breakage – down in one.

Thank you Rob Parnell who captured this pic last week while he and Glenda were staying with us.

I have to pinch myself sometimes that I have this ringside seat
even when they are in destructor mode ,
even when the fairy wrens drive us bonkers pecking all day at the windows and some unknown ( wallaby or was it possum?) scoffs the carnation seedlings
even in these moments it is a joy to be face to face with indigenous Earth natives.

Here they are going about business of life on earth; so too Frankie – doing what she does best – playing/Being the child and curiously highlighting an uncharted field of possibilities for human aspirations. What a grace to offer to hard wired domesticated grown ups. Somewhere within us- the child the wild the spirit – yearns to explore this sweetness of life unencumbered by the restrictive mores of a society modelled on dubious ideals.

Lead the way young ones- we have much to learn yet.

spring equinox

it doesn’t matter how it was done
what matters is how we do it now.

so many perspectives now of how we view the world –
from the air we look down onto countries cities streets homes oceans rivers valleys.
we can zoom in for detail – count the dots on a butterflies wing or out for long views of lava spilling over mountain sides.
from the ocean we look back towards land – the curve of a coastline –
shapes folds harbours river mouths and hills.
and space shows a spinning blue orb .
our capacity to see our world keeps changing
and so too our view of our Selves.

What can we learn from this ability ?
that there is always another angle another glimpse another possibility.
no matter how we peer into the minutiae we cannot ever see the entirety,
no matter the video cam on the spotted owl or the tracker on the koala there will always be more we do not know than what we think we know.
some call this The Mystery.

How are you doing with this covid dance a la 2020?
protests pop up in places
masks mandatory or not
tests and statistics define our mornings
harried health professionals frowning
conspiracies too numerous to elaborate on
everyone has an opinion.

is it a wake up call?
an alarm?
a death sentence?
is it a hollywood movie and we actors with the script already written?

Spring equinox :
dear friends visit and the young king turns ten.
the family gathers to wander the damp trails of a wetland, stop for a picnic and kick a ball .Ten years old he grows lean and and tall, keenly interested in nature . The next generation of grandbabies are all girls- squealing laughing playing hard.

The season is warm and rain has been friendlier.
The forest a sea of dead black trees with life burgeoning up trunks and on limbs of some.
I can still see through it-  the far hills of the valley plainly visible, so too the cows in the neighbouring paddocks – all this was once obscured by a rich understory.
The casurinas and bush cherry start their growth cycle from the beginning.
I understand that I will be compost before I see them again in their full glory.

Whales play along the coastline
unaware of masks and restrictions on land
mindful of plastics hooks lines and sounds that shatter their sense of direction.

Drones take over the skies
spying out newsworthy stories
owning our privacy,
everyone needs to know
social media determines the value.

In this neck of the universe we hug
cry and hold each other,
united in our grief for all that we have lost
bonded in our gratitude for what we still have-
companionship generosity and loving-kindness.

My friend picks up a vacuum cleaner from the relief centre
a donation
her house home beautiful garden is gone
her ancestor’s keepsakes photographs and kitchen utensils.
remarkably she is cheerful and pragmatic,
with her husband they are building again
slowly.

The bushfire inquiries release their findings
burn burn burn,
more burning they say
not less, not never again.
as if this will help
as if this force of nature can be deployed in this manner and we not get burnt
as if any of the forces of nature – air water earth coal uranium can be contained and not come back to bite us.

What message this equinox my friends?
What can we glean from the bones of fires death and virus?
What do all these things have in common?

Now there’s a thread to follow – like Alice down the rabbit hole
into the hallucinogenic world of talking caterpillars smoking pipes –
we can be big and we can be small.


I have taken up visible mending – worn to be seen -to be noticed
a stitch in time they say,
this is the time for that seed to be ignited –
weaving our beauty love compassion strength integrity
into tomorrow – starting today-
this equinox when light balances dark
we can mend something
a hole in a sock, a loss in our neighbourhood,
a friendship, a garden,a path,a fence,a picture,
we are menders fixers creators visionaries.
lets not wait for tomorrow
mend something today.

*******

lifting our faces to sky rain and lightning

Exif_JPEG_420

Black swamp wallaby pauses
ears twitch head turns.
what do you observe my friend?
what approaches ?
standing on tippy toes it snavels the bird seed.

A virus disrupts the world
spreads its vaporous claim over all
grinding the machine to a halt.

Here in the forest
black trunks sprout green leaves
cutty grasses vines ferns pokeroot and tiny tree seedlings
thicken and swell over charcoal ground,
great emptiness where once life thrived.

Every day demands my attention in a new way.
how easy life was before new years eve
when the forest was vibrant fecund bustling with lives,
snorting weaving nesting whistling burrowing plodding napping bounding chortling
and I;
I was able to wallow in their field of busyness
heart immersed in their stories
delighting in their families.

They were my narrative my kin my foundation
post fire I am stripped raw with grief,
heart sore for all that is lost-
peppermint sheoak bush cherry and ancient angophoras
wrens honeyeaters red neck wallabies…

I follow fox ,why are you barking ?
where are you going?
your family are they alright?
I worry over baits and guns.
hello sleepytime bush
you have returned
so many medicines lost
so many lives.

Still, burrows are being dug
nesting sites explored,
goanna wombat skink turtle bandicoot echidna come to tell me they are here.
I am grateful many kin have survived and our work continues,
greeting the sun
kissing the earth
lifting our faces to sky rain and lightning
shivering shaking twitching singing grumbling snoring blinking
dancing life on earth.

I am the less for this tragedy
yet I have to be greater,
to keep singing their Being
honouring their Song
their return after fire.

The virus is unmaking our world
yet unmaking has a most worthy purpose,
every hand; every knitter sewer hat maker artist sculptor cook understands
that there are times when we have to undo and re make.
Sometimes the mistake turns out to be a blessing showing us a better way .

In the early lockdown (which passed unnoticed in the forest)
a friend talked of how eerie it was to hear no traffic,
the air was clearer and birdsong sweeter.
‘I think I hear the Earths heartbeat’, she said.

This could be hope full
and gave me pause to imagine,
perhaps people were tuning in to a deeper resonance
of earth and heart …….
earthearthearthearthearthearthearth

.