adventures of a fearless (mostly) globe trotting seeker...
wondering, wandering, barefoot, nomadess

Saturday, May 29, 2010

No names

Tonight the moon still sets, women collect their gathering baskets, and somewhere, anywhere, she is still waiting. Waiting for his coat to alight on the back of the soft chair in the parlour, in a house that doesn't exist.

And he is every man. And she is every woman. Each story is the same. She comes to you now, as always, wearing a new masque, a new body, telling a new story. She has a thousand names. She whispers yours. You hold her in the wind and let her go.

at the edge of the village in the dust of the dust, the women collect their gathering baskets. their skin is dark blue as the dark blue corn they grind on the stones speckled grey and white. she is young and learning, her hands still get numb, sore and bruised. still, she is proud to be doing the womens work, the washing, the hanging of the white linens. it will not be long before the newness turns to resentment, not long before the honor becomes a chore.

it will not be long before the days of her life, the honor of duty become a fence that traps her beauty and the color of her dreams begins to bleed into the drab dusty earth of every day living. she searches the distant horizon for the man on the horse, for the messenger from somewhere far away. for the one who might come and take her away. to where she does not know. somewhere far from the names that shackle her.

daughter, sister, mother.

she longs to go where she has no names.


my first tantra teacher was a married man with children. i, too, was a married woman. we met in secret, in the old way, in the forbidden path. he said, leave your shoes outside the door. when you come in, you are only energy. you leave your life behind. when you leave, put back on your shoes. you are a wife and a mother again.

when i went home, i was surprised i could be so many people. i felt immortal. i had done the forbidden, and i was not dead. i felt more alive than ever.

Monday, May 24, 2010

The Perfume of Reckless Abandon

notes from joshua tree desert where i slept on a buffalo skin, ate the oracle and drank the moonlight:

sunday, may 16
joshua tree national forest, california

the medicine man says that snake medicine is about the sacrifice of shedding skin to transform. the snake must crawl out of it's skin, and there are a few moments where it is raw before a new skin forms and hardens to protect it from the demands of it's environment and during this time it cannot see, it is completely blind to predators, like a newborn baby. but it leaves the safety of it's old shell of skin because it must. because there is a deep natural calling to do so, to be in the rhythms and cycles of nature. it surrenders to risk the unknown because it's instincts say there is something essential on the other side of the safety of the known.

sunday, may 23
los angeles, ca

i ran into an old lover's lover sitting outside dance class in her van
she said, "it's kinda scary how grounded i can feel sitting in a car"
i melted into the feminine space of her presence
she said she talked to "our" lover the other day and he was sad to be leaving
a new lover to travel
she said she'd never heard him so sad about a woman before
well, i guess it wasn't me
breaking his heart

and i shed the skin of another dream
i take my feelings to the dance floor and begin molting
i am molting in the purples, reds and yellows of my emotions bubbling to the surface of my skin and i begin cooking from the inside out
from the canned heat of my unleashed
most innermost me
that has laid coiled and contained
waiting to re-introduce itself
the part i work so hard for nobody to see

the music vibrates my most innermost me
searching like tiny fingers my supple inside moistness
beating and hammering out my supressed s.o.s. with strobe light rhythm and precision
erupting like honeysuckle droplets of sweat
my sweat that rises like little waves cresting on the ocean of my skin
and i remember there is no end and there is no
just nakedly, unashamedly

and i see my friend sarah and our playfulness meets in our eyes
we are hooked like fish into a dance
and i pray at the temple behind her left ear
parting the soft curtain of her blonde hair with my
her temple smells of the left over morning bath offerings of raw coconut oil and afternoon female dance sweat
i dance at the temple of she

and i dance at the temple of he with a man
who is pondering whether this constitutes infidelity
this flagrant enjoying of each other bodies, breath and eyes while his wife is at home
we roll on the floor
like puppies wrestling and then
i am hovering above him
we are safe and enclosed in the wandering tent of my dark gypsy hair
we are
and our eyes meet in a dare and i say to myself...
"many lifetimes"
as i melt into him and we become one
for a moment
if you let this much love in you will feel it's loss

and how many of us are drying and withering up,
buying insurance policies
cages and prisons to guarantee somebody won't leave us
and we think it's because we don't show them all of
who we are
all of our hunger
and desire
to be sweetly fucked by life

and then we resent this person, like the inmate resents the jailer,
but clings to the safety of their cell
we see this person as a sentence that encloses our truthfulness into silence
rather than worship them as a flower unfolding our fullness
a hummingbird teasing our nectar out

i pound my rhythms into the wood floor
worship with the bone-flesh-beat of my feet
and something rises and a scream comes crawling out of my mouth
like a baby testing the bravery of it's lungs
testing the capacity for the snap-shut-jaw,
the keep-your-secrets-to-yourself-jaw to unlatch and birth this sound
the scream neatly ties itself up to end in a ribbon of humming

truth is a sound, not a shared language,
just a vibration
truth is my own pungent sweat dripping onto my own
parched lips
it tastes like...
it smells like...
reckless abandon-
my favorite perfume

and there is this moment
(do you know what i mean?)
before i put on the skin of another meaning
of another dream
of another illusion
when i stand naked in the now
blind and vulnerable
closer to my soul touching the earth
where i just feel (yes) this is it
it is enough to be breathing
and i am thankful for
when i have fought Life for so long
is this heaven?

Tuesday, May 18, 2010

The Jasmine Garden

los angeles

monday, may 17

On the pedestrian sidewalk of this grey monday morning, i was seduced. i was compelled to stop and lose my senses in the full honeyed jasmine, with their tissue white faces and pink tender stems, petals parting just for my curious nose, petals still heavily dripping the morning dew. i lost myself to somewhere full of light and wonder. i breathed and sucked in the perfume until i was the smell. until i was the precious flower herself.
"I, Lalla, enter the jasmine garden...
where Shiva and Shakti were making love.

I discovered them,
and what is this,
to me, now?...

I seem to be here,

but really I'm walking.
in the jasmine garden."

"is this really real?"
-yoko ono

Saturday, May 8, 2010

embracing the energy of destruction and chaos, shit= fertilizer

this week there were four days of the most tremendous wind
it is springtime and besides just the pretty flowers
it brings destruction in it's awakening
the wind is like a reminder from the heavens and it sits upon me heavily
i try to lay low and hide in my house
i have things i don't want to lose
like my pride

i worry for my son
blood is real
he decided to drop out of high school
well, i did that too
and this week i took him to the exact same building
where me and his father applied for the GED 18 years ago, before i got pregnant
ain't that a kick in the pants
gypsy blood, deeply rebellious
the cycles and patterns repeating

the nature of the wind storm is chaos
it stirs things, uproots things
chaos brings the energy of change
which we so often fear
but also brings new perspective and possibilities

it is not easy to bow to the fire as it burns your house down
and thank the tongues of flame as they devour the lush greeness of the forest
leaving behind only charred stumps of trees,
decapitated blackened trunks and limbs
the ground scattered with brittle burnt offerings that cut the bare feet
where there used to be a lush damp carpet to walk and lay on

and yet this cycle brings new growth
and unexpected shoots of color
this destruction disturbs the patterns like a pebble disturbs the face of placid water
creating new ripples
new prisms of reflections

magic is born of disrupting the surface patterns
stirring the chaos cauldron
to see what emerges in the shuffle
in the spaces vibrating between what we have chosen to collectively see
and accept as the only reality

in india
kali is the mother of destruction
i have not chosen to love her
it is my nature to do so
a special color am i on the universal tapestry
a special note am i in the song of oneness
sometimes dark and sometimes light

in the crippled streets of varanasi, a city so old that it has three names
and they don't bother tearing anything down,
just build new things on top of the decaying masses of buildings
slowly sinking back into the sacred river that eats time
new growth sitting atop decay
unless you were a fish looking up from the water
where your perspective would be
upside down

they carry the corpses wrapped in bright silks tied to bamboo poles, they carry them on their shoulders as they run through the streets
only the untouchables can touch the dead bodies
family members follow behind
the carriers of death walk quickly, adamantly
they know the living will clear the way
the living will shrink themselves into doorways,
make themselves small
to avoid touching death

"ram nam satyahey" they shout
it means only the name of god, ram, remains
you were living all you truly owned was your body, when you die you don't own even that. all that is left is the name of god, all that is left is the desire to create.
through death we desire to create again
one gaping mouth is eternally birthing and devouring us all

through death i am reborn

through despair i know hope
through self doubt i find self worth
through wounding i taste forgiveness

and then the cycle reverses and the snake moves counterclockwise to eat its own tail

through hope i know despair
through self worth i taste self doubt
through forgiveness i taste wounding

forgive me father, forgive me mother
for i have sinned
for i, like all others, have fallen short of the glory
and am stumbling backwards toward it
begin again

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Cowgirl Love Junkie

i wake the serpent in her hole
poking with a stick, laughing like a lunatic
stirring the shakti pot
the honey
the amrit
comes oozing out of my sacrum in a slow serpentine crawl to my heart
pressing her in all directions so she bruises and cracks
and the honey oozes out
and creeps up the back of my neck to tickle
sweet treacle on my tongue
i remember
love is
i can smell and taste it

i put butter on my burnt toast
and cream and sugar in my black coffee
because i like my darkness to taste rich, creamy and sweet

i worship the everyday moments that transcend
the veils are flickering thin
is the homeless woman on the stoop mary the mother of jesus?
is jesus on the cross in agony or ecstasy?
i have seen the same expression on my lovers face as he chokes his seed into an explosive release
and drops sweaty and panting onto my chest
for the moment
until she surges and rises within

i am a cowgirl love junkie
riding the train
shooting innocent passengers with my
love gun
wake up bullets

Monday, May 3, 2010

The Hunger, the Holy Grail

This was an email i received from a student after a retreat, i asked her permission to share the exchange. she shares nakedly about healing an eating disorder and sexuality. she titled her email "inspiration". the work is waking us up, opening us up to crack and spill the secrets and emotions we have nursed in fear and shame for so long. freedom and inspiration from mental and emotional bondage, stripping ourselves of the old clothes of family patterns and global dogma that doesn't fit us any more.

her email:

I hate the way of certain women

You know the ones...they talk of big concepts; Goddesses, union, energy, truth
But they act like the little girls of my elementary school days, giggling about boys (now called 'lovers'), clothing (now for yoga), and the color pink.

I am still an outsider, not quite understanding their language or culture.

We learn to wake up kundalini by having orgasms, but I already know how to have an orgasm. We're supposed to be powerful and wild, but I'm afraid to express myself except in front of my male lover(s)...and then I cry tears of joy and gratitude, I shake the prana out and the salt water roles down my face for he and I to taste.

So, I think I'll just sit here with the boys (men) who now feel awkward and guilty about their penises. Eventually, I will blend into the wall, small enough to slip through the cracks...

I would like to wrap myself in purple. It's really the best color, and that seems to designate me as "woman." I also have breasts, despite trying to starve them smaller. But, I am somehow not of the female species.

It's not that I don't love women...I love their long hair and curved shape.

I once had a female lover. I decided that I belonged with her...but she was only half-human (like my 'half-head' disease that brings such pain)...a mirror, she learned to be me with such skill that I could no longer see who was who, until the day she decided that she finally owned enough of me. By then it was too late...with her went my heart (which began to beat so slowly as it got smaller) my breasts, my hips...and life was slowly sucked out of me until I could not even see myself. I nearly disappeared...and even the bleeding head was not enough.

But, I often curse the God who said "no" when I wanted to return to the ash. I was still too big to fly away. To that I say, "fuck you, God." He is probably laughing now.

I often say to my yogi friends, "I've fasted enough for many lifetimes." I know hunger.

But, what am I hungry for? Certainly not those women. I fear them as much as I fear myself. The men are better...find me one with a heart that has space for me. I'm bigger now though and my size twos are tighter.

As a child I was happy to fold myself into a little ball to escape the monster. Ball Pose...comfortable but not very convenient. I have to make peace with my size, and my power.

One-hundred-twenty is the number they chose for me...and the trick is to not be bigger or smaller than that number. This means I also like 'size two' and the more vague, but important designation of 'XS.' I remember it being far more simple to count the numbers of food; twelve almonds, four raisins, one tablespoon of GrapeNuts. Emergen-C is only twenty, Vitamin Water is one-hundred for two. I recited the numbers over and over again...never having to write them down.

Sometimes I pray for that voice to return...the left brain that tells me what not to put in my body (sugar, salt, oil, grain). That voice knows that avocados are bad news. The voice still speaks to me but I have learned to filter some of it.

Other days I pray for myself to return. The prana in the kiss of the new lover. The ability to drive a car on an open road. The young musician who moves audiences to tears with little old ladies wanting to touch the hands that created that music (was I a saint?). The painter, the writer, the scholar, the yogi, the purple Shakti Queen.

In truth, I long for love. I long to be remembered by those certain women. I don't want the lover(s) to forget my taste. I long to be wild and powerful...and I hope that the world has space...

my reply:

very beautiful
please write more
it is important for yourself and others
yes claim your power
it is the holy grail
it is not always easy
but, like joan of arc
and all the witches, saints, martyrs and mystics before us
it is the road to walk
to meet ourselves
we cannot blame the world
or god
even though sometimes we have to
to get by
to take another breath.

Love gun

los angeles
sunday may 2

back in los angeles
crash landing back home like a mule kick to the head

i went to an ecstatic dance group this morning and the room full of people made me recoil. i did not want to be so close to so many. i felt like i wanted to cry and so i just laid on the floor and wrapped my scarf around my head to make a tight blindfold. i laid there shutting everything out, with drawing my senses inward. then i felt like a baby laying in a crib. i realized i longed to be touched. i longed to be touched by everyone in the room. i wanted to lay there in my blindfold and have hundreds of fingers trace my body and not to see anyone. just touch for the sake of touch, for comfort and pleasure. the freedom of blindness. i realized i wanted to get off. to release the tidal wave inside me. i took off my blindfold and began a very intimate dance with a man, sniffing each other like two dogs meeting for the first time. the animal body remembers things i have tried to forget. when they come back to life i feel big.

the charge of sexual energy in the group of 16 people i am leading in a tantra circle this month builds as we practice yab yum with a commitment of celibacy.
the surge is intense and i feel so much of everything that it wants to split my skin open
like a ripe fruit offering its seeds to the earth
i want to cry
i want to fuck
i want to eat chocolate
i want to discharge this fullness threatening to devour me

i would weep if weeping could hold me
i would give all my belongings for the certainty of sadness
but it is more than that
it is sadness mingled with joy and pleasure
with anxiety and fear
they are all threatening to burst but remain clouds shifting in my inner sky
it is not one thing
it is everything
i have asked to hold more
and here it is
here are all my emotions and my students emotions
the human stories that are moving through us all like a swift river
the charge of the sexual energy accelerates the flow of current and makes us more aware of our masks

what is tantra?
it is embracing my whole self
the rising of the wildness i have repressed and the balancing of that with the laws of the world
i walk the line
i walk feet naked to my path
i walk the tightrope
and lick the honey from the razors edge
it is not this way or that
one step at a time, i must stay very awake
no one can give me a book with the answers
no religions, dogmas, philosophies
the libraries are burning
the world is morphing

there are volcanoes erupting in iceland
the earth is pushing her fierce emotions upward
splintering the skin of the known landscape with the fires from deep below
just because we cannot see the fires doesn't mean they aren't there
a student said, "i've been on so many trips, but they were all the wrong ones"
i said, "how many trips does it take to get to the center of your tootsie roll pop?"
all those trips were born of longing
it is a mystery when we will reach our destination since it is most likely we are already there but just confused by our surroundings
not matching our preconceived notions
the sacred books are burning
the sacred book is life
the sadhana, the practice, the pilgrimage, the meditation is just living
the shrine is the human being
keeping my eyes open
not slipping into old patterns of coping and surviving that have kept me numb for so long

as i awaken
my skin feels too tight
so i slither out
like a snake
the serpent who rides my spine in waves of contraction and ecstasy
and i journey on
in my shapeshifting skin
to begin again
and to begin again
to burn my last dwelling place because i outgrew it
i step lightly into the plunging skydive of the unknown
this burning pushes me to take the leap like i've got a
love gun pressed to my head
my stomach leaps like an elevator
i look for new ground
i root to expand

some things are so good that they are worth doing twice
i find an old lover and feel the heat move between us
he plays a sad song full of hope on his guitar and i finally cry
tears spilling out of my eyes and sliding like a sweet relief down my burning cheeks
and i worship him
and us
the sacred text is our bodies
and our determined attempts at unconditional love

begin again