Breathe

 

Although I wrote this poem in August, it feels appropriate for this week, this season…hang tough, let go, breathe and be kind, to yourself and to others.  Let us walk with grace and courage into this new chapter, and in community as humans, not enemies.

8/15/16 –

How things creep in over time and form a line
Pieces once pure now looking for a cure
Notice the way the dark endures
How resistance holds up against persistence
How constant exposure can lead to a rupture
How the search for contentment can lead to resentment
What takes up residence and pretends as permanent

Looking for closure in this part of the overture
Is there a point in building up to the breaking point?
Is there a part that’s essential in falling apart?

How deep are the wounds?
How dark are the tombs?
How dense are the rooms?

I’ve always been right here
Waiting for the sign to clear
Hoping a word I hear
Will remove every fear

In looking to be complete
I mistakenly compete
And then stumble on my own feet
Overheated in the street

I used to be exclusive and unique
And was always on a winning streak
Maybe I hit the peak
Maybe I let myself go weak
Or maybe it’s just a day in a week

Constantly eliminating can be so delineating
In the land of extremes I rarely know what I mean

Back when I was new and didn’t know what I knew
I want to get back to that place
Where I take care of my face
And mindful of my space
And live with more grace

Where there’s nothing I need
And I’m not always bleeding
Where I’m complete in my breathing

 

And to close…I share with you a few quotes from Anais Nin, from her journal circa 1940…

quotes – Anais Nin diary 1939-1944

“To say that the artist is not serving humanity is monstrous.  He has been the eyes, ears, voice of humanity; the transcendentalist who x-rayed our true states of being.”

“Man is forbidden to concern himself with anything but the struggle for bread.  If his capacity for dreaming, imagining, inventing, and experimenting is killed in the process, man will become a well-fed robot and die of spiritual malnutrition.  The dream has its function and man cannot live without it.”

“When I see the enormity of the machines in factories, I am not impressed.  It is material.  The human adventure, human receptivity, has to find a way to make one feel power, force, but not by mathematics.  I am not angry, but I seek desperately for the sensitive and human America.  But I feel anger and violence in the air.”

An Afternoon Captured in New Orleans

Mr. D. and I get out for afternoon walks fairly often, sometimes Audubon Park, sometimes just wandering through neighborhoods.  It’s a good time for us to discuss the week and ideas and generally what’s on our mind.  It’s treasured time together.

Most of time, I’m seeing the world through my photographer’s eye; but not always capturing, more observing.

Yesterday, the mid-afternoon light was just perfect, and the wind was calm, so I was in a mode to click away and capture what I see.  I’m especially delighted to see the Japanese Magnolias blooming again; always a welcome splash of color in winter.

Enjoy!

 

08/18/2004 – transformation, strength, seasons

There is a world on the edge of rolling
Over to the next season of living
To the next dimension we’re giving

A shift in the air is on the rise
No surprise

Though I still shiver when it shines
Drawing me out of time
Into a design I hadn’t seen, so sublime

Are you ready?
I am willing,
Strong and steady

How the Garden Grows

We’ve had *a lot* of rain here the last couple months, and things are very green and/or soggy.  Here are some of my favorite images of springtime in New Orleans and the places I go to recharge my soul batteries.

PS – the recording I posted about last month…it’s finished!!
It’s called ‘Home: Vol. 1’ and live to preview on the Sweet Jones website….if you’re curious 🙂  This being finished, I can now get back to regular blog/writing and pondering again!

PSS – Happy Summer Solstice!

Blessings in Disguise

I can already feel the tides shifting toward the positive as the new year begins trickling out into a flow.  In New Orleans, Mardi Gras season is in full swing, though this year, I’m a little more internal/creative/quiet.  As we get beyond mercury retro and Mardi Gras, and into that new moon and Chinese New Year (Feb 19), I feel the momentum will be picking up.  I am grateful.  🙂

1/23/15 –

We all do our best
I guess it’s sometimes maybe less
Than where we’d hope to be in time
Or maybe we were always fine
It’s just we hoped there’s more to find
Inside these vessels of blood and vines

In and out of stillness
As the grass grows tall around us
And the weaknesses we long to leave behind
They still intrigue the mind
Maybe we can listen for
The blessings in disguise

I know that I love to give
And life can be of service
But sometimes when my light goes dim
And chaos is the path we swim
Patience wears too thin
I hope you understand

Please don’t take it personal
This challenge universal
Humanity in growing pains
Insanity then back to sane
We’re all searching for
The meaning in our name

 

Here’s a collection from one of our recent strolls through Crescent Park in the Bywater neighborhood of New Orleans…plus a couple of Frady, one of our cats, because he’s too cute to not share 🙂

2015 dream a new dream

HAPPY NEW YEAR!
2015, dream a new dream.  Move deliberately and with care.
Find what it means to claim new beliefs and sew new seams
Into a tapestry that gleams with the hope of sun beams.

12/30/14

Is it all just talk, or will you walk the walk?
Will these ideas have a follow through?
Will they make a difference if made true?

Or is it just a fleeting thought
A thing that can’t be taught
A light that can’t be caught
A fight that can’t be bought

But who’s keeping score?
It’s not a competition or a war

One day at a time, follow the vine
Detours and distractions sometimes just fine
Take your time because there is no time
But don’t let it tangle up your mind

Hold steady that sunshine
The hope of the innocent
Remember what it meant
The first time you dreamt

Doesn’t matter how it went
For 1000 others in the end
Your story has weight
Don’t let the words wait

It’s never too late
To rewrite your fate
In a state to create
And let that fill your plate

11/23/14 –

I am the graceful and grateful companion of God
Sat Nam, Wahe Guru
Each day I wake is a blessing
I walk in love and gratitude

With each step is forgiveness
With each breath is kindness
With each heartbeat is love

There is no hurry, there is no worry
Living in the now, I can say wow
Nowhere to be, nothing to achieve
Stillness is key and the faith to believe

Let fellow earth walkers do what they must
They follow their own rhythm to trust
Let go without reaction
Let God be in action
Call what you have now satisfaction

02/27/06

Think before you speak
Drink your truth and link
The worlds that always shrink
Swim before you sink

Time is on the brink
Life happens when you blink
Don’t let it go to waste
Savor the taste of grace

Remember the love you face
Expand your positive place
Let go, let go of the race
Don’t lose yourself in the maze

Remember to be amazed
By the caring and the crazed

Capturing Moments

I’ve been looking up at the sky my whole life, day or night, always fascinated.    This gallery is me finding the magnificent in the ordinary moments of the day.  Lots to be grateful for as we settle into the last couple months of 2014, reviewing and renewing, and setting new goals for a new year coming.

____________________________________________________
It’s the little bits you do for people
That let your spirit shine through
It’s the little bits of truth you seek
That carry you along your route
(that carry you back to your roots)

Bathe my spirit in light
Let my fields be a golden sight

Let us love before we fight
Let us live through this night
Let us listen to what is right
And be uplifted out of plight

Let us be gifted with second sight
From our sixth-centered eye
Let us be a spirit spy
Ever watchful of the sky

Ready to learn to fly
And hear the reasons in the why.

NCIS: New Orleans

Hello and happy Spring!

I’ll start by saying that it’s not often I’ll re-post and/or mix this blog and my band page.  But the news that follows, well it just had to be shared, because it feels like such a milestone for us.

At the start of this year, my husband and I began our 6th year as Sweet Jones, and it’s now been 8 years that we have been playing music together.  Piece by piece, with lots of patience, practice, perseverance, and gratitude, we shape and shift and build upon this musical dream.  The creative life takes time, and yet there is never really a set ‘place’ in the ‘future’ that we’re looking to land.  For us, it’s always been about the work, and enjoying that work together, one day at a time.  And with that work, we find rewards big and small along the way.
Well this week happens to be one of the bigger rewards we’ve found along this musical journey together.

We are immensely thrilled to let you know about some very exciting news!!!  Sweet Jones has been selected to be one of the local featured musical acts on the very first episode of NCIS: New Orleans.  The talented and funny Rachel Hsieh joins us on cello for this particular song.  We had a blast working with her and the set/sound crew for the show.  We look forward to more adventures like this in the future!  The show will be a two-part pilot to start.
Tune in to CBS on Tuesday, March 25th (7pm CST) for episode 1 and watch until the end, as we are in the French Market scene toward the end.  Yay!!!
Here’s a little article from USA Today about the show.

This was not our official wardrobe on the set, but one of the ‘sample’ looks we sent in for ideas.  You might say we like hats.  Maybe it keeps the good ideas from evaporating, and prevents the bad ideas from infiltrating.

Big, big thanks to Rachel for sharing her talents, and to our friend Kyle, who believed we were the right fit for the scene.

As for upcoming shows, quiet for the very moment (EXCEPT FOR TV SHOW!), but look to mid/late April for spring-time fun and Jazz Fest week shows 🙂  In case you haven’t seen the line up for Jazz Fest, Bruce Springsteen and Eric Clapton are among the headliners.  Wow, it’s going to be a big crowd this year.  Hopefully, the rains ease up and the mud dries in time 🙂

Happy Saint Patrick’s Day!  May Spring come soon, and may the luck of the Irish be with you!

Blooming Butterfly

Blooming Butterfly

Japanese Magnolia

Japanese Magnolia

Your Lovely Face

Your Lovely Face
I have not forgotten your lovely face
Nor your warm embrace
But life’s current pace
Has felt like a race
Or a high speed chase

Where each moment is faced
With some life to save
Where the breath must be brave
Like a calm inside a cave

As we live out each day
In a full-fledged blaze
And find out new ways
To survive the latest craze
And not get lost in the maze

We learn to see through the haze
We learn to soften our gaze
Adjusting to each phase
Of the moon and the sun’s rays

We let love be the praise
And let go of the colder ways
To forgive and to pray