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Moon, Light and Shadow

ART, POETRY, LOVE – THE MAGIC OF JOURNEYS

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Project Destiny

A Sub-par Reality?

backtothegrind

Journal entry: 18th July 2014

I have to say, it has been less than a week since I came back from the most meaningful two weeks of my life and I am having some difficulty settling back in. I’ve always understood that there is a HUGE difference between doing what I want to do and doing what I have to do but I’ve never felt the difference this acutely before.

Adjustments and change have always been a bit tricky for me to navigate and I’m aware that it’s not ok to crawl into bed at 7pm just so I won’t be alone with my thoughts. I wake up early as usual, all excited about my day and raring to go at 4am. Then I remember that I have to spend most of my day in an un-fulfilling role, and I hide under the covers until I absolutely have to drag myself out of bed.

Those two weeks felt more real to me than this reality. While I understand that it will always feel more rewarding and fulfilling doing what I want to do instead if what I have to do, the experience was so much more than that.  I remember, on our last day, as we were having breakfast together for the last time, most of us were thoughtful and a bit sad. We all already knew that our lives were forever changed by this experience.

As we talked about what we each be doing the next day I had shrugged and said “Oh well, back to the real world.” Then immediately realized how incorrect that statement was. My life, my world before the Creative Retreat, now seems like the false one. My life has changed in ways I never would have dreamed and my reality before those two weeks  seems unreal to me now. 

Today 20th September:

I am still having dreams about writing, being around our workshop table and having excerpts to read. In the dreams I hear Professor Funso’s voice: “You must think about what it is you are trying to say.” Then ‘Aunty’ Merle says “But what you really mean by that?”

I wake up with words I have to write down which I quickly forget when thoughts of the office weasel their way in. But I am writing every day.

This was one of the most incredible experiences of my life. Not just because of what I learned about writing but also because of the incredible people I met. I will never forget how it felt to meet and spend time with people who share this singular passion. We were all storytellers and it was an honour to have met so many brave, talented, interesting, warm and inspiring people.

Those two weeks have left an imprint on me. In so many ways. Since then I have added more value to my life by including more creative and purposeful endeavours.

Here’s to changing my life degree by degree.

Caribbean Creative Writers Workshop

In February of this year I received an email indicating that I was one of ten authors chosen to participate in Cropper Foundation’s Creative Writers Workshop in June. I was alone at home when the email came in and the feelings were completely unexpected. I felt like it was not really happening, and actually imagined that no one else had submitted poetry and so I was chosen to make up a quota. I had applied on a whim submitting six poems to compete with other Caribbean writers, never really believing that what I wrote could be seen as poetry.

I had never entered a writing competition before and had only shared my poems with one friend and anonymously on my blog. In fact, I’d never referred to them as poems and called them Scribbles instead. So, receiving that email and subsequently sending my acceptance letter was a pretty surreal experience. I felt like I was someone else, like a little kid about to steal cookies from the cookie jar, with the anticipation of something delicious and thrilling, and the fear of being caught where I wasn’t supposed to be. Was this really meant for me?

The workshop, sponsored by the Cropper Foundation, and organised in partnership with the Department of Creative and Festival Arts at The University of the West Indies (UWI), took place from June 29th to July 13th in the quiet seaside town of Balandra on the north-eastern coast of Trinidad. Over sixty applicants from across the Caribbean submitted fiction, non-fiction and poetry for a chance to spend two weeks with two incredible moderators,  novelist Dr. Merle Hodge (Crick, Crack Monkey and For the Life of Laetitia), and poet and short story writer Professor Funso Aiyejina, winner of the 2000 Commonwealth Writers Prize (Africa) for The Legend of the Rockhills and Other Stories.

I had no idea what was in store. A friend of mine had been a participant in 2008 and when sought she offered the best advice: Expect nothing. Appreciate everything.

I never imagined that my life would be forever changed.

Weekend Getaway

Grand RiviereWhere I will be for the next three days: In a gorgeous cabin on the north coast of Trinidad surrounded by friends, birds, flowers, trees, peace and quiet. The Caribbean Sea is a two minute walk away and best of all, we are still in the leatherback turtle nesting season. 🙂

Camera: Check!    Notepad: Check!   Paint & Canvas: Check! Check!

 

Phoenix Day

The Act Of Leaving

“I was surprised, as always, be how easy the act of leaving was, and how good it felt. The world was suddenly rich with possibility.” Jack Kerouac

Full Moon Yoga on The North Deck

The last Full Moon was on the 27th of March and I accepted an invitation to be a part of a Full Moon Yoga Session up at The North Deck, a cantilevered observation platform which extends out from a ridge high over our rain forest. This amazing tree canopy eventually makes its way down to the sea and the famous North Coast of Trinidad.

It was my first time up at The North Deck, and despite that fact that the yoga session took place at night and the Caribbean Sea was not visible below, it was magical being up there. I’ve always felt affected by the Moon…it’s simple logic to me really: I’m made up of 70% water, so why wouldn’t the Moon have some sort of effect on me as it has on every body of water on the planet? (Unfortunately, a few days before the Full Moon I’m unusually temperamental, but that’s a story for another day.)

“The Moon is believed to represent our intuition, mind, emotions, creativity, sensitivity, and the great feminine power. The Full Moon brings closure, death (to a situation or feeling), change, rebirth, and manifestation. It is a time where we can reflect on those things that no longer serve and give ourselves honor and nourishment in releasing them. The Moon corresponds to the element water and invites us to remember our connection to the oceans held within earth, as well as the oceans of water contained within our own bodies. Water invites movement, flow, a breaking through of built up physical, energetic, and emotional resistance. Water is the element that soothes and calms through steady, cool dissolve.” 
It is believed the Full Moon day can bring spiritual clarity and inspiration from the Divine. The gates to true knowledge are opened within our hearts and we have the greatest opportunity to achieve peace and absolute freedom. I was especially hoping for this to be true that night as I really needed some clarity after a doozy of a weekend. 
I had done some research about the power of this Full Moon and was ready to release what no longer served me and was weighing me down, to take responsibility for what had happened in my life and what was happening (good and bad), and to review and rejuvenate my relationship with myself and with others. The full moon is a time of illumination and I was ready to draw upon the clarity that comes from introspection even if uncomfortable truths were revealed. I was going to let them be a catalyst for change.
The Yoga was Vinyasa Flow, a version I had never tried before and I hadn’t actually practiced my Yoga in almost seven months. I was a bit concerned that I would not hold my own but it was amazing: my body just took over and fell right into it. After an hour or so, we were all lying on our mats resting and letting the energies do their work so I started reviewing what I had planned. As I stared at the Moon through the canopy of branches and leaves above me, I let go of hurt, anger, doubt, fear, insecurity, and feelings of unworthiness. Then I invited love, faith, hope, and clarity into my life. The wind started to blow as I watched the branches above me dance and then all of a sudden I felt the wind on my face and leaves falling on and around me. I reflexively clutched the large leaf that landed on my tummy, as my tears flowed. It was an amazing experience. One I hope to carry with me to the next Full Moon.

More about my life with Yoga can be found here.

Sources:

Tonight’s Full Moon in Libra


The full moon in Libra peaked this morning at 2:30 a.m. PST. Considered one of the most potent full moons of the year, the unique planetary arrangement happening this week creates a powerful play we can take part in here on earth.

How to harness this enormous energy in your life? Here are five energetic concepts in full swing during the full moon in Libra. Tune into them closely and choose to interact with them positively.

Release what is no longer serving you. What are you holding onto that is over and done? What is still weighing you down that you have no use for? Relationships, objects, grudges, clutter?

Take responsibility. The full moon is historically a time of harvest. A time to reap what you sow. Take responsibility for what has happened in your life and what is happening. Good or bad, own your part. This empowers you to move forward courageously and clearly.

Review and rejuvinate your relationships. Your relationship to yourself and your relationships with others. The full moon is a time of illumination. The clarity that comes from introspection can reveal uncomfortable truths. Let them be a catalyst for change.

Conflict is more possible during this full moon. Bring awareness to anger and choose harmony over harming with every word you say and every action you take.

Change is the only constant with this moon. Things are highly charged and in a high state of flux. Soften to the waves of change. Draw on your flexibility. Break yourself open and set yourself free.

Source: http://intentblog.com/5-ways-to-harness-todays-full-moon-energy/

happythankyoumoreplease

I posted this video on facebook today while watching a film called happythankyoumoreplease. I hadn’t heard about it before but watched another film written and directed by the same person, Josh Radnor, a few days prior, so felt like giving it a shot. During the movie, I heard this song and posted it on my page with a caption which read: “I received a gift today.” I did that because the song’s first few lyrics connected with me:
what are you so afraid of?
why are you feeling scared?
what’s the worst that’s gonna happen?
I know I’ve been holding myself back, out of fear mostly. Fear of the unknown, fear of opening myself up to love, fear of getting hurt, fear of failure. All of these fears were filling my mind and stopping me from moving forward, toward new adventures. They were taking up so much space in my mind and heart, leaving little room for appreciating what I do have and what I do know, and even less room for hope and promise. The song was a reminder to be open and to be brave and welcome new opportunities. I had to share it.
Ten, a few minutes later, one of the main characters, Annie, said: “About a year ago, I was in this cab, and the cab driver, this Indian guy starts telling me all sorts of stuff… He said, ‘You have great potential in this lifetime, and the key to your life is gratitude, you do not give it enough thanks.’ And I said, ‘Well, how do I do that?’ And he said, ‘Simple, say thank you!’…And he said after I say thank you, I should say more please… So that gratitude in the universe is eternally abundant.. so, I’ve been giving gratitude a shot. Thankyoumoreplease, thankyoumoreplease…” 
That quote resonated with me as well, as a reminder to do what I know: appreciate what I have, and welcome more.
Ok, so by this point I’m liking this unassuming little film, even if it’s simply because the characters are trying to find their way through life like everyone else, bungling and bumbling, like everyone else, fearing life, like everyone else. Like the other film I saw by Radnor, I understand what he was trying to do, and even though sometimes the dialogue seems over written and cliched, two additional quotes I’ll take away with me, just because I’m a hopeful romantic.
Sam #2: “It’s not easy to be adored – you in particular – you have a tougher time with it than most, I get that, but I want you to give it a try. Think of it as an experiment. I promise I will be very wonderful at adoring you Annie. It an area where, I think I got a great deal of talent. You’re worth the adoration Annie, you’re worth it, and the fact that you don’t believe it, has nothing to do with whether it’s true or not, it is true for me, and that is all that matters. “
Annie: “Sadness be gone, let’s be people who deserve to be loved, who are worthy, cause we are worthy.”

I Only Wish You Love

There you go again,
chasing down that road.
I’ve held your hand
and watched you do this,
time and time before.
Now this time has come,
and you can walk alone.
I won’t right you when you stumble
Nor catch you when you fall.
I won’t kiss or hug away the hurt
from bumps or bruises.
This time, on my own and from afar,
 I’ll celebrate your joys
and mourn for you your losses.
Fare thee well, my friend,
as every time before,
I only wish you love.

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