Thursday, July 26, 2007

moving inward, moving outward

"Take care of the small circle around you. When you have succeeded with them, then move outward one small step at a time." - Audrey Hepburn

The circle narrows, even as it has always been wide... focus comes. Regular calls, offering to help each other in our daily lives, meeting over drinks... to talk, to connect, sharing meals and movies at home. Reminding each other of what is most important, while allowing the freedom to try, fail, rest, try again.

Recent weekend trips to Yosemite, with dear McClellands, camping on the Merced River, and time alone for Dan & I... as well as a 'rip-roaring' weekend in Paso Robles with wonderful Amanda & her delightful brother & parents... I am warmed by the life of these dear friends we have. It's amazing to know such people & share laughter, hopes, pains and "aliveness" with them. It also thrills me to share beauty and revelation. The craggy glory of Yosemite or the brilliant blue of the sea & sky from Hearst Castle... both were moments of glory to share and bask in with my Dan and those precious ones around us. I am awake in it - I see it. And I realize... this is IT.

"For attractive lips, speak words of kindness. For lovely eyes, seek out the good in people. For a slim figure, share your food with the hungry. For beautiful hair, let a child run his or her fingers through it once a day." - Audrey Hepburn
Currently watching : Viva Las Vegas (1964)

Thursday, July 19, 2007


I am haunted by two artistic endeavors lately:

1. The film "Little Children". Painful, bleak and beautiful, Dan and I wept at the incredible ending. Our choices for today. Choosing now. The agonizing past, but always... the future. Compelling, it stays with me, hitting me in the last moment of the film full force... with truth.

2. The book, "Falling Man", by Don DeLillo. The most chilling account of 9/11 in subtly nuanced ways. A cathartic, mesmerizing read for me. The image of the Falling Man haunts my dreams, as the brutal, loss-of-innocence threshold I crossed on 9/11 marks my life since.

"Although the wind
blows terribly here,
the moonlight also leaks
between the roof planks
of this ruined house."
- Izumi Shikibu (Japan, 974?-1034?)

"This poem reminds that if a house is walled so tightly that it lets in no wind or rain, if a life is walled so tightly that it lets in no pain, grief, anger, or longing, it will also be closed to the entrance of what is most wanted.
" - Jane Hirshfield, "Nine Gates"

Currently reading :
Falling Man: A Novel By Don DeLillo

Monday, July 02, 2007

Preservation Hall Jazz Band

They played a free show at Stern Grove yesterday - such a spectacular park it is, deep in a ravine, lush green, tall Eucalyptus trees, lush foilage, and, today, bright sun.

Local Lavay Smith opened with her big band, as we savored a fresh picnic sweet Amanda prepared. Then Preservation Hall Jazz Band began ( New Orleans' legendary band. It's a dream of mine to see them in Preservation Hall when I finally make it to New Orleans. This, a rare, free show of classic Dixieland, Ragtime and Jazz.

By the end of the show, we were dancing on a log (a felled tree beneath us), alive with the spirit of the music. The entire park, hundreds of people, were dancing joyously as this Southern symphony of men played on, a number them almost a century old, now childlike souls beneath the swaying trees of Stern Grove.

"The gradual transformation from an attitude of self-hatred to a spirit of self-acceptance is what occurs in the process of trying to be honest." - Brennan Manning in "A Glimpse of Jesus"

Currently watching : Designing Woman (1957)