HER-story:

With words and images, I am telling my story. Through art, through sculpture, I am remembering HERstory...
CASIMIRA

Thursday, May 31

glorious adventure

2007 Untitled mixed media
"Life is either a daring adventure or nothing."
- Helen Keller


celebrating a glorious adventure of 57 years which continues...

Wednesday, May 30

Casimira Sacasa de Debayle

2007 "Great-Great-Grand-Mother & Muse" mixed media
30 de Mayo

Día de La Madre Nicaragüense

Felicidades Nicaragua


remembering and honouring every Nicaraguan mother

Tuesday, May 29

caged beauty

2007 Untitled mixed media on paper
"Taught from infancy that beauty is woman's sceptre, the mind shapes itself to the body, and roaming round its gilt cage, only seeks to adorn its prison." - Mary Wollstonecraft 1757-1797

after viewing part of a "beauty contest" last night

Monday, May 28

phenomenal Maya

2007 Untitled
Pretty women wonder where my secret lies.
I'm not cute or built to suit a fashion model's size
But when I start to tell them,
They think I'm telling lies.
I say,
It's in the reach of my arms,
The span of my hips,
The stride of my step,
The curl of my lips.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

I walk into a room
Just as cool as you please,
And to a man,
The fellows stand or
Fall down on their knees.
Then they swarm around me,
A hive of honey bees.
I say,
It's the fire in my eyes,
And the flash of my teeth,
the swing in my waist,
And the joy in my feet.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Men themselves have wondered
what they see in me.
They try so much
But they can't touch
My inner mystery.
When I try to show them,
They say they still can't see.
I say,
It's in the arch of my back,
The sun of my smile,
The ride of my breasts,
The grace of my style.
I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

Now you understand
just why my head's not bowed.
I don't shout or jump about
Or have to talk real loud.
When you see me passing,
It ought to make you proud.
I say,
It's in the click of my heels,
The bend of my hair,
the palm of my hand,
the need for my care.
'Cause I'm a woman
Phenomenally.
Phenomenal woman,
That's me.

"Phenomenal Woman" ©1978-2007 Maya Angelou

one of my favorite poems by one of my favorite authors

Sunday, May 27

Salvadora, Salvadorita

2007 "REGAL GREAT-GRAND-MOTHER" mixed media

Mama Yoya
I paint you in blue and sing you in red,
celebrating your roots in Nicaragua, France and Spain.

Abuelita Yoya
I dance with your wisdom and strength.

Salvadora
I honour you.

Salvadorita
I love you.

Yoyita
I understand and thank you....

excerpt from a series of poem-prayers in progress

Saturday, May 26

a woman imagines herself


"Imagine a woman who believes it is right and good she is a woman.
A woman who honors her experience and tells her stories.
Who refuses to carry the sins of others within her body and life.

Imagine a woman who trusts and respects herself.
A woman who listens to her needs and desires.
Who meets them with tenderness and grace.

Imagine a woman who acknowledges the past's influence on the present.
A woman who has walked through her past.
Who has healed into the present.

Imagine a woman who authors her own life.
A woman who exerts, initiates, and moves on her own behalf.
Who refuses to surrender except to her truest self and wisest voice.

Imagine a woman who names her own gods.
A woman who imagines the divine in her image and likeness.
Who designs a personal spirituality to inform her daily life.

Imagine a woman in love with her own body.
A woman who believes her body is enough, just as it is.
Who celebrates its rhythms and cycles as an exquisite resource.

Imagine a woman who honors the body of the Goddess in her changing body.
A woman who celebrates the accumulation of her years and her wisdom.
Who refuses to use her life-energy disguising the changes in her body and life.

Imagine a woman who values the women in her life.
A woman who sits in circles of women.
Who is reminded of the truth about herself when she forgets.

Imagine yourself as this woman."

“Imagine a Woman” © Patricia Lynn Reilly, 1995

Friday, May 25

mayan treasure

2007 Untitled mixed media study for sculpture
His birthday was quickly approaching and she needed to complete the sculpture...the Mayan gods and goddesses sent their ideas to her in dreams...

writings for a CASIMIRA piece in progress

Thursday, May 24

fashionable dress oppression

2007 Untitled mixed media
" Is fashionable dress part of the oppression of women, or is it a form of adult play? " - Elizabeth Wilson b.1936

I say it depends on the woman...

Wednesday, May 23

forbidden necklace

2007 Untitled self-portrait detail mixed media...it was all about the necklace. She wore it, knowing it did not belong to her - that it never would belong to her, knowing it was forbidden. Through her own temptation and curiosity, she sealed her fate the instant she closed the gem-encrusted clasp. Such disrespect and self-betrayal would haunt her the remainder of her mortal lives. The necklace had been created for a high priestess and possessed magic and mystery which only a high priestess would understand...

excerpt from a short story written years ago

Tuesday, May 22

dreaming reality

2007 Untitled pearl & crystal
She dreamt with art.
She dreamt with him.

In a sacred circle she sat and provided the fire.
The light came through her flame.

She dreamt with silk and pearls.
She dreamt with him.

Where was he? What had he become?
A husband, a father, an old tired man in a suit?
No, he was a partner, a friend, a sensual shaman in feathers.

She dreamt with music and woke up to the poetry of his kisses and caresses.

Monday, May 21

gems of the soul

2007 Untitled ideas
The soul is made of gems...gems which each one is capable of retrieving daily...in a smile, in a thank you, in a breath...

excerpt from meditation journal

Sunday, May 20

black cherry pie

The cherry symbolizes wealth and good luck. Yesterday, he surprised us with a home-baked black cherry pie. Summer is almost here.

Saturday, May 19

healing the heel soul to sole

2007 my shoe
Fashion trends come and go...but how boring to follow and not lead. On the subject of heels...extreme flats can be rather uncomfortable and dangerous at times (read yesterday's entry). A shoe is a most personal accessory. A shoe is what protects our beautiful feet that take us everywhere. First and foremost, a woman needs to know how to be comfortable, yet stylish. She should be able to feel confident without stumbling and without cleaning out her savings account on shoes designed by men who shall never need to wear them. I admit to owning shoes I rarely wear...just once in a blue moon. What is women's obsession with shoes all about? How can we heal the heel? How may we save our souls and soles?...

"I don't know who invented the high heel, but all men owe him a lot." - Marilyn Monroe 1926-1962

Friday, May 18

motherhood in the park

2007 Untitled mixed media
It was a glorious spring day. The enormous tulips bowed in the breeze, opening up to reveal their innermost hues. The park had been taken over by children. Newborns in strollers, toddlers toddling – they were everywhere. Nannies and mothers, most of whom appeared to be pregnant – again, accompanied the blooming offspring. New life. Motherhood. Lifelong commitment. As she was contemplating these ideas, she stumbled. She fell hard and loud on concrete pavement. She sprained an ankle and bruised both knees, staining her designer trousers. The left side of her body received most of the impact. Her left thumb bled and became blue instantly. Her platinum wedding band scratched just enough for her to take notice. She was wearing flats and could not blame the fall on her shoes. The idea of Motherhood had painfully brought her to her knees – had bruised her and had caused her to bleed...

Thursday, May 17

purple

2007 Untitled color study for jewels
Purple - is fashionable twice -
This season of the year,
And when a soul perceives itself
To be an Emperor.
-- EMILY DICKINSON 1830-1886

or an empress...yes, a CASIMIRA empress

Wednesday, May 16

waterfall world

2007 Untitled mixed mediaThe jewel-encrusted cave led her to an enormous drape of flowing water. Behind the luminescent waterfall curtain she discovered another world...a world where butterflies spoke and angels painted...a dream where the ocean sang and the moon danced...

from a recent dream

Tuesday, May 15

princesa maya

2007 Untitled mixed media detail
La princesa Maya buscaba la respuesta en las estrellas.
Una noche de luna, ella por fin sabia lo que tenia que hacer. Comenzó a subir la pirámide hasta llegar a la luz...

excerpt from a short story

Monday, May 14

our Mother, who art in heaven

2007 "MIMI" mixed media detail
My Grand Mother Lillian left her earthly body four years ago today. I was with her the night before and the morning of this sacred re-birth...at her side, comforting her, praying with her. Her favorite prayer became the prayer that Jesus Christ taught his disciples. She taught me to pray it ever so slowly, paying attention to every word.

Our Father, Who art in heaven

Hallowed be Thy Name;

Thy kingdom come,

Thy will be done,

on earth as it is in heaven.

Give us this day our daily bread,

and forgive us our trespasses,

as we forgive those who trespass against us;

and lead us not into temptation,

but deliver us from evil. Amen.

Sunday, May 13

mother's day

2007 Untitled mixed media collageMother, all that you have given, all that you have sacrificed.

Mama

Mamita Linda

Mammy

Mamasita Mia

Mommy

Madre Adorada

Mom

Ma-Ma

Mama Diva

Mother, every time I utter your name, I express my love and gratitude for giving me life. You are so right, every day is Mother's Day.

Saturday, May 12

the stray animal

2006 Untitled mixed media on paper detail
...she had a mane of wild black hair and dark eyes that seemed to have seen too much in one lifetime. One spring day, the stray animal just wandered into our lives, arriving on our front door wearing a lavender ribbon...Mothers have a way of welcoming stray animals into their hearts and homes...

excerpt from a short story written a long time ago

Friday, May 11

red velvet & spider webs

2007 Untitled mixed media photographic study
They sat in the red velvet seats of the old theatre. It was the only theatre that offered guests chilled bottled mineral water from France. How wonderfully odd to view a modern film in such a vintage venue, she thought.

Does Marie-Antoinette know he is Super-Man, she asked.
- He is Spider-Man, she whispered.
Is he Frodo, she asked.
- He is Sea-Biscuit, she laughed.

They all laughed...for over two hours, they laughed, sitting in the red velvet seats of the vintage theatre in the midst of Manhattan...laughing and laughing...

Thursday, May 10

the ghost

2007 Untitled mixed media

The ghost descended upon the house deciding it belonged to her and nobody else – ever. She sang in the morning rain and danced under moonlight, blowing kisses to the wind, loving being visible to only a few.

an excerpt from a poem-short story I wrote in 1989

Wednesday, May 9

she wears a feather

2007 "FEATHER" sketch

she wears a feather

she says it reminds her of her power

of both Father and Mother

Sky and Earth

she wears a feather and soars

Tuesday, May 8

ancient oceans

2007 Untitled mixed media
“...My mother tells me,
you were always old,
Grandmother,
even as you bore three children,
making your way each day
to the market,
feeding mouths open and needing you.
Your home was always by the ocean,
watching waves.
Sometimes as night descended,
you could hear the water weeping endlessly...”

excerpt from “Grandmother” a poem written by Lisa Williams

My beloved Grand Mothers, Maruca and Lillian shared a sacred connection with the ocean as I do...the three of us are ancient oceans...

Monday, May 7

can you be happy?

2007 Untitled mixed media detail
Can you be happy – truly happy – for another person?

Sunday, May 6

great moments

2007 Untitled sketch
"In great moments life seems neither right nor wrong but something greater, it seems inevitable."
-- Margaret Sherwood

Saturday, May 5

saludos

2007 Untitled mixed media

Saludamelos - a todos Mi Muchachita....


She visited my dreams, as always, with a message...I felt her love surround and protect me all through the night.

Friday, May 4

angels in dreams

2007 Untitled mixed media

Where do angels live?

How do angels sing?

She asked me in a dream...

Thursday, May 3

Lillian Ada de la Cruz

2007 "MIMI" mixed mediafirst born daughter
the essence of
father and mother

priestess of earth
blessing the planet
with your birth

goddess divine
i honour you
grand mother and muse of mine

Wednesday, May 2

planet earth as mother

2007 Untitled mixed media detail
"Making Family" - a poem/prayer by Jamie Sams

"Earth Mother teach me of my kin,
Of Hawk, and Dove and flower,
Of blinding sunlight, shady knoll,
Desert wind and morning showers.
Teach me every language of
The creatures that sing to me,
That I may count the cadence of
Infinite lessons in harmony.
Teach me how to honor
The Sacred Spaces of all,
Gently melding with the whole,
Answering the whippoorwill’s call.
Steamy tropics to glacial ice,
To thundering ocean tides,
In every grain of desert sands,
Your beauty forever abides.
Oh, Mother of every kingdom,
Let me claim my family’s love,
From the whales of deepest oceans,
To the Winged-ones, high above.
Expand my limited vision
Until I can truly know
The missions of my Relations
And the blessings they bestow."

© 1994 Jamie Sams

Tuesday, May 1

MAY of MOTHERS

2007 Untitled mixed media detail
May belongs to Mothers.
May I celebrate you for 31 days ?
I sing to you and give you praise.
May of Mothers...for women who nurture and give unconditionally.