Last night, I had a bizarre synaesthesia dream in which I could see the colors and patterns of pain. My heel was throbbing, and with each pulse of pain, a different square square would appear in front of me, almost like a square of fabric, with colors and patterns. As the pain changed, the colors changed, and focusing on the images made the pain less intense.
When I woke up, my heel was actually aching. The pain that I live with is not intense or debilitating. It’s mostly just the aches and pains of aging. I go through cycles when I feel like everything is inflamed, and then long months of low-grade aches. I’m not spending a great deal of time thinking or worrying about the aches lately, so the dream is interesting, perhaps just a manifestation of the momentary sensations. But I’m really grateful for the crossing of senses that the dream offered me.
- Shiny new semester with a clean slate.
- Chicken corn noodle soup for supper with crusty rolls, and Jon who made it
- Three day week
Daughter, the songs of women
are the first words of children
—Abby E. Murray, in Rattle Magazine
“Our vitality is inextricably bound up with creativity. Like a tree whose expression is fruit, giving our gifts is what keeps life pushing through our veins. It’s what keeps us feeling alive. As anyone who has strayed too far from their creativity knows, without it every corner of one’s life can fall prey to a terrible greying spread. As Kahlil Gibran writes about trees in an orchard, ‘They give that they may live, for to withhold is to perish.” —Dreamwork with Toko-pa
“If we want children to flourish, to become truly empowered, then let us allow them to love the earth before we ask them to save it. Perhaps this is what Thoreau had in mind when he said, “the more slowly trees grow at first, the sounder they are at the core, and I think the same is true of human beings.”
“We must rapidly begin the shift from a “thing-oriented” society to a “person-oriented” society. When machines and computers, profit motives and property rights are considered more important than people, the giant triplets of racism, materialism, and militarism are incapable of being conquered.” ―Martin Luther King Jr.
Ursula LeGuin, in the Introduction to The Left Hand of Darkness:
The artist deals with what cannot be said in words.
The artist whose medium is fiction does this in words. The novelist says in words what cannot be said in words.
Words can be used thus paradoxically because they have, along with a semiotic usage, a symbolic or metaphoric usage. (They also have a sound—a fact the linguistic positivists take no interest in . A sentence or paragraph is like a chord or harmonic sequence in music: its meaning may be more clearly understood by the attentive ear, even though it is read in silence, than by the attentive intellect.)
“I think being motivated is naturally built-in to one’s vocation. When you walk a path you love, there is something deeper calling you forward on it, like a beautiful question that can never be answered. In the hard times you may turn away from it, but a part of you knows you’ll always turn back because you can’t give up on what you love, even if you try.
In the end, I think the real work is not finding inspiration, but attuning to it. So when I’m not feeling inspired, I know somewhere along the line I’ve been distancing myself from life. This feeling of being separate from ‘something greater’ is usually brought about by numbing habits; so I’ll take myself to the forest and let my senses be reawoken and warmed back to life. I think pleasure is really the gateway to feeling connected and inspired.” —Toko-pa Turner
“Then one day I was walking along Tinker Creek and thinking of nothing at all and I saw the tree with the lights in it. I saw the backyard cedar where the mourning doves roost charged and transfigured, each cell buzzing with flame. . . . The flood of fire abated, but I’m still spending the power. Gradually the lights went out in the cedar, the colors died, the cells un-flamed and disappeared. I was still ringing. I had been my whole life a bell and never knew it until at that moment I was lifted and struck.” —Annie Dillard