Monday, December 28, 2009

Say goodbye to another perfectly good decade

We of the Roman Calendar are about to say "goodbye" to the 2000s. I remember 2000 very distinctly. Remember the hysteria? What a thankful let-down that was. In 2000 I welcomed Ethan into my life. In 2000 I was horrified to welcome George W. Bush into my life. In 2002 we moved into our house in Norfolk, where we still reside. In 2001 was 9/11 and the world changed. In 2004 we welcomed Asherah. By this time my parents divorced, irrevocably altering my view of family, and what people are and are not capable of; and how they can change. It was a decade of highs and lows containing the most heart-wrenching lows, and glorious highs.

I am glad it's over.

During this time I lost myself. I suffered a traumatic birthing experience with Ethan, resulting PTSD that manifested as Post-partum depression, and had a year of living hell. I promised myself during that time to speak of this when it was warranted, to de-mystify this illness and help others recognize it and feel less shame if they have or have had it. So there.

During this time I gained a lot of weight, which I now realize was largely a way to insulate myself. To lose myself. Melting away those pounds this past year has been quite a journey. I've had to face myself once again stripped of those layers of security; readjust to being viewed as a "normal" person (weight-wise, in society's eyes) and generally face a lot of internal crap that wasn't too pleasant to face. But here I am.

I've realized more clearly who I am. What I want. What I believe in, and what I'll fight for. I've realized that there are some people who just don't "get" me. That the neat, cozy little community I've created for myself--which is so "normal" for me--is pretty outside the mainstream in many respects. I think this scares people. I've realized that rejection can still hurt; that even when you wear your difference like armour, proudly, there are still some seams in it; and you can still get wounded.

I've also realized that ultimately, this doesn't matter. If you are living your life as you believe it should be lived, and being a good person who is trying to make the world a better place, that's better than most of humanity is doing.

I look forward to the next decade. Do you? I think this will be the decade that I "become" the professional writer I want to be. I will see my son off to college before the decade is up. I will certainly be saying "goodbye" to some loved ones who will have lived long lives. Ari will still be steadfastly by my side; my best friend, my partner in scifi and general geekdom. He will no doubt be continuing to drive me batty every winter, and continue to never surprise me with any gifts :-) Asherah will be a teenager, and if she were truly to "rebel" I suppose that could mean she will be a conservative preppy studying to be a nun. Although Ari is convinced she'll get a tattoo and ride a motorcycle.

Time will tell.

Happy end of decade to you and yours!

Sunday, December 6, 2009


I wrote this several weeks ago, but it takes on a certain relevancy considering the recent news headlines.

What do *you* read in it? I'd be interested to know.


The Gods have no need of love
We are immortal;
love lingers not

Passion rides the ebbs and flows
like the curves of a woman's body;
Her lover delights in them

But soon craves the peaks
and shadowed depths of another;
She has become charted territory

Thursday, December 3, 2009

OPINION: On Tiger, Climate Change & Ethics in Science, & Troops

Well, what a news-packed and sad day or two it has been. I won't even mention the health care fiasco bill that is going down in flames or the six suspects in the CA gang-rape case who are are pleading "not guilty"--despite the fact that almost a dozen people looked on as the rape of a 15-year-old girl was occurring. Disgusting.

OK, maybe I will--since I just did.

But on to the big three. I'll begin with the easiest, beause frankly, I'm not sure how I feel about it...

More troops for Afganistan. (

I am torn between wanting all the troops to come home, wanting the horrific violence and injustice to end in Afghanistan, and ambivalence toward President Obama. (What a thankless job, President of the United States. Although I have been an Obama supporter, I always have to wonder a bit about people who would run for a job like this. But back to the point.) Since Obama has been pretty much anti-war during his political career, one can only imagine the kind of intelligence he has access to that would make him want to send in the troops. Perhaps to support the troops that are already there? (Speaking of thankless jobs...) Perhaps because there is good reason to believe that "victory" is close at hand? But I weary of war, and political posturing, and the destruction of lives, families, and culture that are happening all around the globe. I feel ashamed every time I hear of a vet that returns home to the U.S., only to find lost job opportunities, broken famililes, and medical needs not being met by the very country these vets have given their lives for...

On to climate change, and ethics in science. And data. And data manipulation. (

First, I must say that I am sad and disappointed and angry. All at once. In my world, there should be a special kind of hell for a "special" kind of traitor. What kind of traitor? Traitors like women who hate women (Hello, Sarah Palin and Ann Coulter.) Like supposed liberals who do things like compromise on womens' health issues, or conservatives who decry "invasive government" but are the first to want to get into your bedroom, dictate who you can and can't marry, and force-feed you their idea of religion.

In a similar vein, I am SO mad at Phil Jones. Because I personally believe (REALLY believe, in the depths of my soul) that humans are having an impact on the climate, and that the impact is largely negative for human life and other life on which humans most rely. I also believe that a world's climate is an incredibly complex system that cannot be modeled well. However, on virtually any local level, a motivated person can find evidence that human activity is altering the world. (But for some perspective, humans always HAVE impacted their environment. It's what we do. We are animals that are consummate tool-makers, and our particular brand of intelligence motivates us to seek out what is new and novel, and adapt it to our liking. Other animals do as well. Just not on the scale we do.) So why did Phil Jones take actions that appear to be tantamount to fudging data and squashing research?

It remains to be seen the extent to which the above happened. But it does seem pretty clear that our friend Phil is probably not the greatest guy, and it is also a shame that he did not have enough faith in his research to let it speak for itself. Granted, there are global climate changes that occur irregardless of human activity--there were before humans ever got here. But again, it seems pretty clear that we are having a negative impact.

Perhaps he lost sight of what is truly important due to political pressure or his own need to be King of the Hill. Science is political. And every academic and others who collect and make sense of data for a living know that data need to be manipulated--not in the negative sense of the word--but "data manipulation" is, essentially, the process of going through your data, trying to make sense of it, and making it presentable and understandable for a variety of audiences. Most data can be made to support any position. It is a matter of what you keep, what you throw away, how you code it, and what statistics you use on it. Nevertheless, Phil has clearly now done exactly what a person in his position should NOT be doing--giving reasons for the opposition to throw out the human-environment impact theory en masse.

So I appeal to those of you who may not be convinced that we are having a negative impact--don't smugly sit back, feel vindicated, and throw your recyclables out with the trash. Do you really need scientists to tell you what you can probably see with your own eyes? What logic dictates? For example: Yes, carbon dioxide is "natural." It is in our atmosphere whether we are here or not. But we evolved within this ecosystem that had a certain ratio of CO to oxygen and other gases. If we upset that ratio when we could do otherwise, how can the result be anything but bad for us??

This is our only planet. Whether you believe we were given stewardship of it by God or Gaia; whether you believe we are here purposefully or by happenstance, we are here. Don't trash this wonderful gift that we will hand down to our children. Don't blindly decide to be "pro" or "anti" on this issue simply because your political affiliation, or religious affiliation--or any affiliation, for that matter--tells you to. Think. Feel. Then decide.

On to Tiger...

I thought I would end up writing the most about this, but I don't think that may happen after seeing everything I've already written above :-) Here is my one question to you all: Why are you surprised?

Powerful men always have--and always will--act in ways that are "outside" of what the rest of society is expected to adhere to. (Those on the "inside" however--the other power-brokers--know that they can behave any way they want, while publicly supporting "what is right.") Why do powerful men do this? They do it because they are powerful. They do it because they can. To wield power is to be attractive, and women (and some men, I don't want to discriminate *grin*)like attractive men.

So, I am not the least bit surprised that Tiger cheated on his wife. He is gorgeous, athletic, smart, and personable. He clearly has women throwing themselves at him. And at some point, the temptation must just have been too great. At some point, he decided the rules did not have to apply to him. Who can blame him? This is a person that has been told for his entire life that he is exceptional. You do the math.

I would have way more respect for Tiger and other powerful men if they were just honest from the get-go. If you fall in love with someone and want them to be your life-partner and have a family with them, but are not sure you want to be faithful, say so. There are plenty of women who, given the choice, would choose to be living a very comfortable life with someone they care about, even if it means he may not always be faithful. Not everyone of course--but let's face it--many women would.

So let's stop being so shocked when our public icons let us down. I am not saying they are necessarily bad people, I do think there is something about power and celebrity that alters a person's judgement on certain matters.

We are only animals, after all.

As an aside, take a note here Tiger et al. Don't sleep with someone you don't trust. As this situation has once again shown, today's declaration of lust is tomorrow's paycheck, talk-show circuit, and book deal.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Song of Self

(written in 2006)
song of self

too long have i basked
in the reflected glory of others;

or the promise of such.
spent too long waiting

for them to a forge a path
for me to follow.

i am done with the dirt
raised by another’s footsteps

ahead of me. i want to
return to the home

that is myself. i follow
the beacon of my own

I Think the Sisters Will Take Over the Earth

(written in 2002)
The Sisters Will Take Over the Earth

I think the sisters should take over the earth.

Can you hear them crying?

Starved, half-crazed, taught to feel shame…
Wouldn’t you feel the same?
Can’t you hear them wailing?

Keening over another lost daughter
(because sons are better.) Or
Hiding their curves behind curtains—
Murder for “flirting.”
Can you hear them screaming?

“Save me from this rape!”
This debasement of body and soul
In the name of War. Or
Simply because “She asked for it—she was drunk, you know.”
Can’t you hear them coming?

Marching, heads held high…
Fists waving angrily to the sky—
“Give us back our children!
Our souls! Our planet!
We no longer fear…”

Can’t you see them coming?
Brown, pink, and beige—
Hair glossy black and silky straw…
Eyes furious.
They no longer tremble before your
Man-made God. Or
The things you do in His name.

Can’t you feel their wrath?

I cannot stop them now…
They’ve been too long denied.
Can you feel their blows?
Feel your own wounded pride?

You were all so arrogant,
Sure in your ways.
You were justified—used your God’s name.

Can you hear them?
They are whispering…
Plotting your demise.
Your ways are destructive—
Against life.
Against love.
And they want to be wise.

That tickle in your ear…
Did you feel it?
Did you hear the promise there?
I think it’s true.

The Sisters Will Take Over the Earth.

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Obligatory "Thankful" Post

I know that's a snarky title, but I just wanted to get your attention. I *am* thankful for a lot, and YOU should be thankful that I will not be enumerating it all here. ;-)

Suffice it to say, I am blessed with a wonderful family and friends, and am lucky to be employed and have enough food to eat and a roof over my head. That is so much more than most people in the world have.

I am thankful to anyone who is following my blog, and helping me become a "real" writer. I'm thankful for the upcoming opportunities I have to write, and to disseminate my voice.

I'm looking forward to having a few days off, and cooking Thanksgiving dinner tomorrow. And thankful for people to share it with.

I pray for those in the world who are not so lucky. And I hope that those who have "enough" are enlightened enough to share some of their bounty.

Blessed Be!

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Losing the Fear

It has been a huge a few weeks for me, in terms of my inner growth. So many little shifts and adjustments in my thinking; to how I interact with world; how I make sense of others' actions and how I integrate all of these within myself. It would be impossible to relay to anyone else how monumental some of these shifts have been. But there is one change that I can describe and quantify fairly well.

I am no longer afraid.

It's not like I'm not afraid of anything. I still have a fight-or-flight response, and am fearful of things that are truly horrifying--the prospect of losing my eyesight, eating lobster, or being held against my will by Ann Coulter spring to mind. The kind of fear I have lost is my fear of trying to manifest the kind of future I want. Before now, I never truly tried as hard as I could to write more and get my writing "out there" because I could fail. Because I could find out that I was not that good at it. And where would I go from there?

Now I am willing to risk it. I am ready for the prospect that I am not as talented as I would like to be. It's okay now. Maybe it's a mid-life thing. What do I have to lose by trying? I am already blessed in so many ways. If my writing career doesn't pan out, I still have an amazing family, truly wonderful children, and many strong and loving relationships with people I care about. I have lived through some really painful life experiences, and I have come out okay. And I am happy.

One of my best friends has this quote under her Facebook profile photo: "Life is too short to be subtle."

That is my new motto.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

Hecate's Will (Poetry)

I wrote this several years ago, but it seems appropriate to re-post at this time of year.

Happy Halloween!!

Hecate’s Will

I am That which lives in the shadows
And I am the Shadow.
Half My face sees the Sun –
The other half the Moon.
I call to those who follow the Shadow Path –
Be My hands and eyes and ears on Earth –
Help Me hold the Blade of our Craft.
Hold My Love in your hearts
Hold the Mystery that is Me
And reveal the Mystery
To all who seek It.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

POETRY--Water Meets Air

(Note: this was published in the February 2010 edition of Pagan Edge magazine:

Water Meets Air

“I am of the Water,” he said.
He raised his shiny head
above the water-line
and his nostrils flared open
to scent the busy wind.

“I am of the Air,” she said.
She swirled down on a draft
inclined a wing toward him
and inhaled his salty tang;
she hovered beyond his reach.

“I've been told to marry my kind,”
he explained. “I've been admonished
'Keep your thoughts here--in
our liquid realm--where you are
sustained, where you are nourished
and kept safe.' ”

He disdainfully shot a blast of water in the air.

She eyed his magnificent scales,
marveled at his streamlined shape
and ached to touch his sleek body.

She buzzed her wings in agreed displeasure.

“I've been told to marry my kind,”
she responded. “I've been scolded
'Keep your future in sight! Your
destiny lies in the sky, among the clouds
with your kin, where you are cherished,
where you are safe.' ”

She cawed her resentment to the heavens.

He drank her in with his eyes,
those lovely curves; graceful wings--
to lose himself in her embrace...

He slapped at a wave in frustration.

“I am the Water!” He proclaimed,
“But I burn who cannot burn;
I fly who cannot breathe the air for long,
I thirst to be joined with you.”

“I am the Air!” She responded in kind.
“But I soar aimlessly; my keen eyes
never settling on my desire;
my dreams for you floating helplessly away.”

She landed next to him on a seaweed-strewn rock.

Eye found eye; fin to wing they touched.
He wondered at the wind through her soft, strong feathers;
She admired the sturdy grace of him.
“When,” she whispered hoarsely, “can Air and Water dare to join?”
Her eyes sparkled with salty tears.

“In future times,” he answered tightly, “our kin shall finally see...
that Water and Air are but two poles on one continuum--
that the poles are not fixed, and the continuum but a circle.”

“In future times,” she echoed, picking up his thoughts,
“our kin shall know the truth-—that Air and Water are but
two elements among many, and there is strength and wisdom
in combining the best of all.”

In the darkening sky above,
lightening snaked across the orange clouds;
and the ancient rock stood in silent witness.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Poetry--"Her Heart is Deep" written this past Spring

Her Heart is Deep

I know this woman, and her heart is deep.

She loves long and laughs hard--
and sometimes loves hard and laughs long.

She folds those she loves into long, soft embraces;
kisses her children with sweet chocolate kisses;
and pulls others in with her smile.
But her heart is deep; and it resonates with echoes of times past.

In the well of her heart, she held promises of love; fanciful dreams;
plotted courses through her present; made maps for the future.
(But the terrain was unknown, and unscrupulous men plotted to lead her astray.)
And her deep heart was too kind to know this.

With her scars and new-found knowledge;
she set forth for other lands. Her eyes shone like fog lights;
cutting through the swirling mists and calling lovers to her side like a siren...
But her bruised heart was deep; and kind men left pieces of themselves there;
could not fully find their way back from her depths...
(She did not really have control of her heart then--and could wield it as a weapon.)
And for this she now sorrows.

In her cryptic heart she learned to find refuge from all sorts of intimacies--
(But her heart was deep, and it was hard to see this.)
She had learned to protect her heart--
And with her brave face and her compassion and her loving ways;
no one knew the depths of her heart; and no one saw her secret pain.

But now the woman has learned to laugh again; love again; cry tears of joy--
But her heart is deep; and it carries those secret scars and holds arcane secrets.
You can not see these from the surface...
Because to see her now is to behold love...

Children seek comfort in her shade;
friends vie for her ear; and lovers wait to lie with her again.
(No one knows that she holds her hands aloft when alone, letting damselflies alight
on her upturned hand; no one knows that in secret,
she can make an unknown cat purr from across a room or alley, simply by staring at it;
no one knows that she catches dandelion fluff on her tongue as if it's ambrosia.)

No one knows her utter contentment in these simple joys--
These are among the secrets she keeps;
In those watery, fertile depths
of her too-deep heart.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

Autumn is

Autumn Is

Autumn is
Cinnamon; spicy and bittersweet

It is
Burnt Umber, and harvest gold

It feels
Tired, and restless
And ready for slumber

Autumn is
Wood Smoke and warm sweaters

It is
Leaf piles, and school buses

It demands
Re-assessment, turning inwards;
Curling up

Autumn is
Closure; and new beginnings;
It is the fire of your Spirit
It is water that sustains you
Autumn is remembrance;
And planning,
And seeding,
And feeling,

Autumn is
Centering yourself

It is
Possibility, and promise

It demands movement
To center of the spiral

Autumn is within you
Embrace it


Sunday, September 13, 2009

In Praise of the Late Summer Sky (2009)  

Just a snippet I composed in New Hampshire this summer, after staring at the night sky on Lake Winnepausakee.

In Praise of the Late Summer Sky (2009)

Life provides exquisite moments of clarity;
it is a blessing to recognize them when they place themselves before you;
like a buffet waiting for you to sample your favorites or discover something new...

Last night I lounged and nibbled on the Milky Way as she spread herself across the moonless sky.
I cast wishes for future success and happiness as I reacquainted myself with shooting stars;
I shuddered with surprise and joy as the Loon's mournful call echoed across the lake...

I celebrated my ability to hear and see these gifts as the wonders they are--
moments out of ordinary life that allow me the perspective to be in the moment,
to enjoy all that I have,
and to seed the garden of my future.

Saturday, September 12, 2009


I wrote this one in 2006.


Do not despair. I speak
to you,
who desperately claws against
the blackness.

Why do you inhabit this life?

I know,
it seems a prison of disappointment.
Of sadness and failure.
I hear
your tortured whisperings.

What have you done in this life?

Or one past, to deserve this?
You are not alone.
I feel
what you feel.
I know the icy, soulless hands
that tighten around
your throat. Threatening,

To engulf you.
Why am I here?

I have traded my life;
Traded infinite bliss so that
I can save you.
I eat your sorrow; consume it and digest it.
I replace it with hope,
and the rainbow
of possibility.

Will I always be here?

For you, yes. And the others
who dare imagine I exist;
That I can be called upon
in times of
desperate need.

I am eternal.

"The Woods Spoke to Me"

This was my first published poem (aside from the contests I used to win as a kid ;-) ) It was published in newWitch magazine in 2003.

The Woods Spoke to Me

I should have been doing laundry,
but the Woods spoke to me thus-
Feel the dry, sad leaves
crinkle under your feet.
See if you can catch
the sigh they make,
Now that their lives are ending.
Resolute that they will rejoin the Mother
in a warm embrace.

Come, the Woods said, come…
Follow the flickering lights
as they dart through the branches.
The Sun does not penetrate here.

You are new to this place.
Don't your fingers ache
to touch these prickly bushes?
To discover the wild berries
that grow here?

Look how I've left myself
exposed for you.
Dropping the leaves,
letting dead branches fall.
Sucking back the vines and ferns
into myself.

Coyote will not harm you-
Fox is shy.
Squirrel will show you the way.
See him dancing for you
at the edge of the yard?
The brothers and sisters of the Woods
heed my commands.

Follow the broken light
into the shadows,
where your footing is unsteady.
Breathe in the crisp air,
the dank earth,
Let it nourish you.

Squint your eyes,
and you will see…
Me, the Lord of the Woods
in all my majesty.
Darting through the costumes
of the leaves-
Waiting for you.

Join me in this place
you know is home.
For you are kindred…

I should have been tending to the house.
But the Woods spoke to me.
Oh! The Woods spoke!

A snippet from my poem, "Interview with the Faerie, Part 1." I've begun shopping this one around, looking for a place to publish it.

The full text is LONG. 1,723 words long. Hence, the snippet.

He began:
Faeries are not all cute and innocent,
Like your people have suggested
for several hundreds of years.
We are not all female,
And harmless; with flowers for clothing
And cute, pointy ears.

We are not here for your amusement,
Or to do your bidding!
We are not about
Leaving dewdrops and sparkly dust.
Do not think you can control us…
We are not a race of beings you should trust…

At this point, to my surprise,
He pulled a small cigarette from somewhere…
(Within His breeches? Or by magic?)
And on cue, an armed dragonfly
zipped over to Him in a flurry of iridescent wings,
rubbed two legs together, and it lit.

‘Himself’ sighed and took a long draw….
Blew sweet smoke rings right in my face.
(UGH—I tried not to cough!)
“Your Highness,” I prompted
“What about the belief that Your people
Originate from the Emerald Isle?”

He raised a perfectly arched eyebrow,
Blew another puff of smoke at me,
And continued…
My people reside in Ireland, to be sure—
We have a long and colorful history there.
We defeated the evil Formorians eons ago,
And Our seed flourished in that fertile land
We were masters—and mistresses—
Until the humans set foot on Our sand.

My people and yours lived in harmony;
We took from you what we desired,
And in return shared Our magicks.
But some power-mad of your kind conspired,
with men who thought themselves “holy”
And you know what then transpired…

//end of excerpt//

Waddya think?? Comments welcome and encouraged. Whaddya think of the convention of using different typeface for the two 'voices'?

First Post

Need to post something to see how all this looks. THEN I need to try and not spend all of my free time in the next few days "tweaking" the appearance. Time that would be better spent writing, or doing other semi-useful things such as sleeping and going to work.

I should also mention that if you find this blog and my name sounds familiar, you may have been linked to my former blog, "a slice of reality," now defunct.