Monday, September 9, 2013

I am a Dweller on the Threshold


It has taken four days to settle, to draw inward

 for a month-long stay at Ghost Ranch, New Mexico 

to compose stories...write this life....and 

it has taken four whole days, just to begin.

Four days---not to clear the mind, but

 to dampen the senses, relieve the quickened pace of

change that happens not in hours, not in minutes

but in moments.

I walk the heart labyrinth for guidance, asking

when and how (?) shall I begin,

for each afternoon brings shape-shifting light



and I cannot look away


from a leaf on sun-baked sandstone

a rattler coiled silently in the portal,

multi-hued outcroppings and shiny stone cliffs.

I wash my clothes and hang them on the line,



and cannot take my eyes off 

the deep blue mountains and gold sand hills,

the spires, and buttes and gypsum-strewn arroyos

the bones, stones, and dried piƱon wood. 

How (?) shall I begin?

I draw deeply the fragrance of antelope sagebrush, 

walk a couple miles to dinner each night, and poke

the earth's skin with my stick.

There is no stillness in this outer world:

animals and insects are jumping, running, fleeing,

above and below, in front of and behind

hummingbirds buzz, a deer poses




lizards sprint and rabbits dash

in my peripheral vision, ravens light 

and lightening strikes 

a dizzying theatrical performance, this earthly world.

Amplified and untethered, how (?)

how (?) shall I begin?




*Title: I am a Dweller on the Threshold  -Van Morrison

10 comments:

  1. I think you already have begun, my sweet. I think your brain (and heart) are as full as a soaked sponge. Just squeeze and see what flows out.

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  2. Over stimulation of the senses, but in a good way. I like your sponge analogy; thank you, friend

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  3. I can't think of anything to say that Lindy hasn't already. I'll be visiting Ghost Ranch next week, just for a day, and you have made me very anxious to get there. The writing and the photos are full of beauty.

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  4. If you've never been before, fasten your seat belt. The beauty is rather annihilating! Wonderful people, too.

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  5. Your words captured me...I was sorry when they ended. Beautiful, lyrical, soul-grabbing. You are so talented...thank you for sharing. I am deeply moved--and I needed this in this exact moment.

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    1. Writing teachers often tell us to figure out, who is our audience? After much thinking on this, I've found I've got one goal: to emote...to hopefully make the reader feel something. I am so happy this piece moved you!

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  6. Breathtaking images . . . . I won't even get into the fascination with the 4 days that it's taken you to settle, 4 being a number that speaks to orientation -- directions, seasons, etc. I am deeply envious of this experience you're having -- and taking it all in at the same time. My own mini-experiences with quiet (I'll write it) and space/light perception (since seeing the James Turrell exhibition are giving me even more appreciation of yours.

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    1. Oh Deborah...thank you for the idea! Of course, 4 directions. I'll have to work on that. It would fit in so well for a longer piece. Thank you for always making me think "further."

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  7. Now I know where you are. I've been there, although only passing through on my way to Abiquiu and beyond.

    In my living room, there is a copper basket filled of the sort of souvenirs I favor. A piece of those resonant red cliffs lies buried in the collection. I believe I'll bring it to the top, as a reminder that what lies within needs an occasional assist to become visible.

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    1. Yes, the red dirt. Today is the first day it rained in 7 days...and the different shades of red flowing into the dry arroyos is remarkable...which I had my paints! Thank for your lovely thoughts, Linda.

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