HER-story:

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

Saturday, August 12

awareness


"Love springs from awareness.

It is only inasmuch as you see someone as he or she REALLY is here and now and not how they are in your memory or your DESIRE or in your imagination or projection that you can truly love them, otherwise it is not the person that you love but the IDEA that you have formed of this person, or this person as the OBJECT of your DESIRE not as he or she is in themselves.

Therefore the first act of love is to see this person or this object, this reality as it truly is.  And this involves ENORMOUS DISCIPLINE of DROPPING your DESIRES, your PREJUDICES, your MEMORIES, your PROJECTIONS, your selective way of looking, a discipline so great that most people would rather plunge headlong into good actions and service than to SUBMIT to the BURNING FIRE of this ASCETICISM.

When you set out to serve someone whom you have not taken the trouble to see, are you meeting that person's need or your own? So the first ingredient of love is to really see the other.

The second ingredient is equally important to see yourself, to RUTHLESSLY flash the LIGHT of AWARENESS on your motives, your emotions, your needs, your dishonesty, your self-seeking, your TENDENCY to CONTROL and MANIPULATE.  This means calling things by their name, no matter how painful the discovery and the consequences.  If you achieve this kind of awareness of the other and yourself, you will know what love is. For you will have attained a mind and a heart that is alert, vigilant, clear, sensitive, a clarity of perception, a sensitivity that will draw out of you an accurate, appropriate response to every situation at every moment.

Sometimes you will be irresistibly impelled into action, at others you will be held back and restrained. You will sometimes be made to ignore others and sometimes give them the attention they seek. At times you will be gentle and yielding, at others hard, uncompromising, assertive, even violent. For the love that is BORN of SENSITIVITY takes many unexpected forms and it responds not to prefabricated guidelines and principles but to present, concrete reality. When you first experience this kind of sensitivity you are likely to experience TERROR. For all your defenses will be torn down, your dishonesty exposed, the protected wall around you burned.

...If it is love that you truly desire then set out at once on the task of seeing, take it seriously and look at someone you DISLIKE and really see your PREJUDICE. Look at someone you CLING TO or something you cling to and really see the SUFFERING, the FUTILITY, the UNFREEDOM of CLINGING and look long and lovingly at human faces and human behavior..."

- Anthony De Mello

from my early morning meditation

Friday, August 11

spirit


"Be patient.  Respond to every call that excites your spirit.  Ignore those that make you fearful and sad, that degrade you back toward disease and death." - RUMI

Thursday, August 10

get quiet

- do you trust your gut?  I do... -
"Learning to trust your instincts, using your intuitive sense of what's best for you, is paramount for any lasting success. I've trusted the still, small voice of intuition my entire life. And the only time I've made mistakes is when I didn't listen. 

It's really more of a feeling than a voice—a whispery sensation that pulsates just beneath the surface of your being. All animals have it. We're the only creatures that deny and ignore it. 

How many times have you gone against your gut, only to find yourself at odds with the natural flow of things? We all get caught up in the business of doing, and sometimes lose our place in the flow. But the more we can tune in to our intuition, the better off we are. I believe it's how God speaks to us. 

For all the major moves in my life—to Baltimore, to Chicago, to own my show, and to end it—I've trusted my instincts. I take in all the information I can gather. I listen to proposals, ideas, and advice. Then I go with my gut, what my heart feels most strongly. 

And I often tell friends: When you don't know what to do, do nothing. Get quiet so you can hear the still, small voice—your inner GPS guiding you to true North. " - OPRAH




Wednesday, August 9

the powers that speak through dreams


"She shows up just when you need her. She always gives you the support and counsel you need, and never judges you.

She is an amazing psychic advisor: she knows what the future holds for you, and she can tell you what to do and what not to do to avoid something bad or find the right job, or the right home, or the right partner.

She is a...healer who can help you to fix your body before you get sick, and who has the right medicine and nurturing to speed you into healing and recovery...She makes house calls at any time, and she never charges you a cent.

She's fabulous fun and a great traveling companion. She makes you want to get up and dance, and sing, and play. She loves to fly off to exotic places...

She has wonderful energy. An hour in her company gives you a boost for a whole week.

She'll mother you when you, and your beautiful inner child self, need mothering, hold you when you need holding, and give you a shove when you need to jump through a hole in the world.

She knows you better than you know yourself, in your everyday mind. When she holds up a mirror in front of you, you don't notice the blemishes. You see a being of radiant power and possibility, your ancient and shining self. And in that moment of recognition, you begin to remember and live from your soul's purpose, the sacred contract you signed before you came into your present body.

...and you never say thank you, or remember her birthday. You ignore her advice more often than not...You forget the songs you sang together, and those nights of love and beauty...If you find the moon through the smog and city lights, you do not recollect that she flew you there...

If she were a regular friend, she might dump you as a miserable ingrate. This friend is beyond the ordinary, and she has the patience of an angel - but even the patience of angels is not endless. So if you won't take her advice, she might make less of an effort to warn you...Then the magic begins to flicker in your world, and you are more alone than you ever need or want to be.

...dreams require action. We must take action to honor the friend who visits and advises and travels with us in our dreams, but the most important is the one we find in the mirror - when our sight is clear: the ancient and shining self. 

Taking the right action to honor dreams is practical magic of a high order. Real magic is the art of reaching into a deeper reality and bringing gifts from it into the physical world. This is what we do when we honor dreams, and the powers that speak through dreams."
- Robert Moss


Tuesday, August 8

me la como entera


I woke up with this quote on my mind.

"The demon that you can swallow gives you its power, and the greater life's pain, the greater life's reply."
- Joseph Campbell

snapshot of the lion-headed goddess, Sekhmet 




Monday, August 7

full moon lunar eclipse


my exquisite grandmother transitioned on this day years ago...her love and sweetness continue to guide me... 

Estrella Maruca, I promise to publish your story in print one of these days...


Sunday, August 6

simplemente la mano nos damos y despues que murmure la gente

- Frida Kahlo and Chavela Vargas, 2013 mixed media on paper -
"Tomate esta botella conmigo,
y en el ultimo trago nos vamos.


Quiero ver a que sabe tu olvido,
sin poner en mis ojos tus manos.

Esta noche no voy a rogarte,
esta noche te vas de deveras.


Que dificil tratar de olvidarte,
sin que sienta que ya no me quieras...

Nada me han enseñado los años,
siempre caigo en los mismos errores,
otra vez a brindar con extraños,
y a llorar por los mismos dolores...

Tomate esta botella conmigo,
y en el ultimo trago me besas.


Esperamos que no hayan testigos,
por si acaso te diera verguenza.


Si algun dia sin querer tropezamos,
no te agaches ni me hables de frente,
simplemente la mano nos damos,
y despues que murmure la gente..." - Chavela Vargas




Saturday, August 5

si nos tentamos


"Paso que pasa 
rostro que pasabas 
qué más quieres 
te miro 
después me olvidaré 
después y sólo 
solo y después 
seguro que me olvido.
Paso que pasas 
rostro que pasabas 
qué más quieres 
te quiero 
te quiero sólo dos 
o tres minutos 
para quererte más 
no tengo tiempo.
Paso que pasas 
rostro que pasabas 
que más quieres 
ay no 
ay no me tientes 
que si nos tentamos 
no nos podremos olvidar 
adiós."
- Mario Benedetti 



Friday, August 4

words unspoken

- mixed media from a series -

"light reflects from your shadow,
it is more than I thought could exist,
you move through the room,
like breathing was easy,
if someone believed me,

they would be,
as in love with you as I am,
they would be,
as in love with you as I am,
they would be,
as in love with you as I am,
they would be,
in love, love, love...

and everyday,
I'm learning about you,
the things that no one else sees,
and the end comes too soon,
like dreaming of angels,

and leaving without them,

and with words unspoken,
a silent devotion,
I know you know what I mean,
and the end is unknown,
but I think I'm ready,
as long as you're with me,

being
as in love with you as I am
as in love, love, love..." 

- Romy Madley Croft

Thursday, August 3

tu compañía


"¡Amor, cuántos caminos hasta llegar a un beso,
qué soledad errante hasta tu compañía!
Siguen los trenes solos rodando con la lluvia.
No amanece aún la primavera.

Pero tú y yo, amor mío, estamos juntos,
juntos desde la ropa a las raíces,
juntos de otoño, de agua, de caderas,
hasta ser sólo tú, sólo yo juntos.

Pensar que costó tantas piedras que lleva el río,
la desembocadura del agua de Boroa,
pensar que separados por trenes y naciones

tú y yo teníamos que simplemente amarnos,
con todos confundidos, con hombres y mujeres,
con la tierra que implanta y educa los claveles." - Pablo Neruda

detail from 2013 mixed media on canvas in a private collection 

Wednesday, August 2

walking in the rain


"Don't threaten me with love, baby. Let's just go walking in the rain." - Billie Holiday

mixed media on paper


Tuesday, August 1

nine years


In the blink of an eye my baby boy turned nine years old, yet what was the meaning of my life before him? 

I seemed to have all of the time in the world.

I could indulge in uninterrupted sleep and extraordinary lovemaking.

I traveled. I was carefree. I was selfish and self-centered. 

I seemed content, but something - or rather someone - was missing. 

excerpt from my journal 

2009 snapshot of his 1st birthday; it is important for me to mention that all of the surrounding toys were gifts from dear family and friends 


Monday, July 31

all the rest of what I want with you




While doing some research for a series of mixed media, I stumbled upon these inspiring words of wisdom:

"There is something very satisfactory about being in the middle of something."

"...sweetheart, it isn’t lust; it’s all the rest
of what I want with you that scares me..."

"You were the weather in my neighborhood. You were the epic in the episode. You were the year poised on the equinox."

"There are lines of yours I know by heart. There are scents of yours soaked in my skin."

- Marilyn Hacker




Sunday, July 30

messages


I heard my name being whispered.


I looked up.


I read the messages in the clouds,


our secret love language of the skies.


The moon, the sun, the stars, the clouds...


...ours...

snapshots from an afternoon walk






Saturday, July 29

the truth is



"Nothing can shatter this love. For even if you took another into your arms, the truth is, my sweetheart, you would still be kissing me." - HAFIZ




Friday, July 28

imagination and kisses


"There are two ways to reach me: by way of kisses or by way of imagination. But there is a hierarchy: the kisses alone don't work." - Anais Nin 

snapshot: Peruvian feathers, grandmother's pearls, crystals and a rock my son painted blue when he was two...a corner of my world...

Thursday, July 27

loba


"A healthy woman is much like a wolf: robust, chock-full, strong life force, life-giving, territorially aware, inventive, loyal, roving. Yet separation from the wildish nature causes a woman's personality to become meager, thin, ghosty, spectral. We are not meant to be puny with frail hair and inability to leap up, inability to give chase, to birth, to create a life. When women's lives are in stasis, ennui, it is always time for the wildish woman to emerge; it is time for the creating function of the psyche to flood the delta...It means to establish territory, to find one's pack, to be in one's body with certainty and pride regardless of the body's gifts and limitations, to speak and act in one's behalf, to be aware, alert, to draw on the innate feminine powers of intuition and sensing, to come into one's cycles, to find what one belongs to, to rise with dignity, to retain as much consciousness as we can."

- Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estes

...a beautiful, wild wolf has continued to visit my dreams 

Wednesday, July 26

deep inside


"...but even so, just as he starts to leave, when he notices a bit of dirt under his thumbnail, he stops to scrub it out. Although she has never complained at all about his grubby appearance whenever he came in tired from the digs and sat drinking with her, she might feel differently now that she is going to take him upstairs.

He is glad to see the show again because it gives him time to anticipate and dream, to build up to a private finale. Though he doesn't fool himself. She has to have known for a while how much he thinks of her, and yet, kind as she always was when he told her all his troubles, he knows she has another regular man, more sophisticated, more of her world. As one more time he watches the extraordinary grace with which she dances, all that gauzy fabric whirling around her, his longing has a different quality now that he knows his desire will soon be met...

...But it is not just the mechanics of what she does that impressed him. He has all he longed for now, even what he never quite understood before that he wanted. It is not just that she had made him happy. He is laughing to find himself lighter than air. And she has given him a deeper pleasure, too; as if reaching into the center of who he is, she has mined the gold that was deep inside."
- Susan Griffin

Tuesday, July 25

antes de ser maldita


" Te doy mi alma desnuda, como estatua a la cual ningún cendal escuda. Desnuda con el puro impudor de un fruto, de una estrella o una flor; de todas esas cosas que tienen la infinita serenidad de Eva antes de ser maldita. De todas esas cosas, frutos, astros y rosas, que no sienten vergüenza del sexo sin celajes y a quienes nadie osara fabricarles ropajes. Sin velos, como el cuerpo de una diosa serena ¡que tuviera una intensa blancura de azucena! Desnuda, y toda abierta de par en par ¡por el ansia del amar! "

- Juana de Ibarbourou (1892 – 1929)

Monday, July 24

motherworld


I am on this earth to mother: to nurture, to birth, to heal, to create, to mourn, to play...to dance the sacred, wild dance of motherhood, remembering HERstory...

"Avalon is psychologically a motherworld. It is the shadow of patriarchal consciousness, repressed and thus feared and distorted, as are any contents of the personal or collective unconscious that are denied. It is also the world of the Mother we once lived in if we were cherished in infancy; in growing up, we left this behind. This mother-world is personally prehistoric, before our own specific memories, as matriarchal history is also. Avalon as mother-world also continues to exist, side by side with rational consciousness, to be entered only when we alter consciousness by falling asleep and dreaming, fall in love, or are in a situation in which the veils between the worlds are thinner and we cross over.

...A model for the existence of motherworld and fatherworld exists as right and left brain psychology, in which the dominant left brain is rational, verbal, and linear, while the right brain is nonverbal, nonrational, nonlinear. The function of the right brain is less appreciated but has to do with images, emotional coloration of experiences, and song (if words at all); the right brain is open to alternative realities.

To cross to Avalon is to remember the archetypal Mother, the Goddess in her several forms and many names, to rediscover the feminine mysteries and the sacred in embodied experiences. Avalon exists where divinity dwells in nature and quickens in the pilgrim. Where there is feminine divinity, there is access to Avalon..."
- Jean Shinoda Bolen, M.D.

a favorite snapshot from a series 


Sunday, July 23

new moon blessings


the deliciously dark new moon whispers wisdom through dreams...

begin...

trust...

surrender...




Saturday, July 22

your absence


"You've so distracted me,
your absence fans my love.

Don't ask how.

Then you come near.

"Do not...," I say, and
"Do not...," you answer.

Don't ask why
this delights me."

- RUMI

2013 mixed media on paper


Friday, July 21

his love: the beginning of everything


"I fell in love with her courage, her sincerity and her flaming self-respect.  And it's these things I believe in, even if the whole world indulged in wild suspicions that she wasn't all she should be.

I love her and that is the beginning of everything."

- F. Scott Fitzgerald

2013 mixed media on paper


Thursday, July 20

the real lover


"The real lover is the man who can thrill you by kissing your forehead or smiling into your eyes or just staring into space.” 

- Marilyn Monroe



Wednesday, July 19

the way you make love


"There are so many words by Rumi that melt me straightaway into the heart pine floor. This particular line of words is so powerful and free of prediction that first it freezes me, forcing my eyes closed, and then instantly it infuses me with a kind of sweet slow burn that reminds me that I am so alive and so willing to take another chance on another new day. If this line had been spoken at Emmanuel Methodist Church when I was a girl in South Carolina I would not have been bored and scribbling bad poetry in the margins of the church program. I would have been mindful, engrossed, bowed, a devoted girl shepherd — imagining the future.” - Nikky Finney

--  “The way you make love is the way God will be with you." - RUMI --


Tuesday, July 18

same


"He's more myself than I am. Whatever our souls are made of, his and mine are the same."

 - Emily Brontë


Monday, July 17

bite

- mixed media -
"She's my girl...She's my blue sky.  After sixteen years, I still bite her shoulders.  She makes me feel like Hannibal crossing the Alps." - John Cheever (1912-1982)

Sunday, July 16

exquisite misery

This little sketch is a mixed media from 2011.

"My love has made me selfish. I cannot exist without you. I am forgetful of everything but seeing you again - my life seems to stop there - I see no further. You have absorbed me. I have a sensation at the present moment as though I was disolving - I should be exquisitely miserable without the hope of soon seeing you...I have no limit now to my love...Love is my religion. I could die for that, I could die for you."
- John Keats

exquisite misery...an interesting concept 


Saturday, July 15

beautiful


"She was beautiful, but not like those girls in the magazines. She was beautiful, for the way she thought. She was beautiful, for the sparkle in her eyes when she talked about something she loved. She was beautiful, for her ability to make other people smile, even if she was sad. No, she wasn't beautiful for something as temporary as her looks. She was beautiful, deep down to her soul. She is beautiful."

- F. Scott Fitzgerald

Friday, July 14

salty smiles

- mid-1970s - Rehoboth Beach, Delaware -

The beach holds memories of sand castles and salty smiles. It is where I need to begin telling my story, telling her story...with Father Sun and Mother Moon...

excerpt from my journals

Happy Birthday Dad, I love you beyond words!


Thursday, July 13

under pressure


"Courage is grace under pressure."
- Ernest Hemingway


Wednesday, July 12

done


"I’m a princess cut from marble, smoother than a storm.

And the scars that mark my body, they’re silver and gold.

My blood is a flood of rubies, precious stones.

It keeps my veins hot, the fire's found a home in me.

I move through town, I’m quiet like a fight.

And my necklace is of rope, I tie it and untie.

And now people talk to me, but nothing ever hits home.

People talk to me, and all the voices just burn holes.

I’m done with it.

This is the start of how it all ends.

They used to shout my name, now they whisper it.

I’m speeding up and this is the red, orange, yellow flicker beat sparking up my heart.

We're at the start, the colors disappear.

I never watch the stars, there’s so much down here.

So I just try to keep up with the red, orange, yellow flicker beat sparking up my heart.

I dream all year, but they’re not the sweet kinds.

And the shivers move down my shoulder blades in double time.

And now people talk to me, I’m slipping out of reach now.

People talk to me, and all their faces blur.

But I got my fingers laced together and I made a little prison, and I’m locking up everyone who ever laid a finger on me.

I’m done with it." - LORDE


mixed media from a new series, 2017





Tuesday, July 11

the way he looks at her


remembering my beloved grandparents on their wedding anniversary 

Monday, July 10

waiting for your soul to shake


"I will be waiting here...
For your silence to break,
For your soul to shake,
For your love to wake!"

- RUMI

a corner of my desk: crystals, pearls, a river rock and a sterling cuff 



Sunday, July 9

full moon


did you look at her tonight and think of me? 

she knows.

the moon knows your secret wishes my dear.

and your soul whispers to me in dreams.

snapshot of the full moon from my bedroom window tonight 

Saturday, July 8

relationship


received this passage after my daily ritual of morning meditation, prayer and yoga...

and my dear, if the word *god* turns you off, simply substitute it with one that connects you with the Divine Life Force that resides within...

"The only beloved who can always be counted on is God. The ultimate partner is a divine one, an experience of ourselves that is totally supportive and forgiving. Until we know this, we keep seeking sustenance from men that they cannot give us. Most men and women today are wounded. The search for some one who isn't in pain is unreasonable until we ourselves are healed of our own dysfunctions. Until then, we will be led to people as wounded as we are in order that we might heal and be healed together. What this means is that NO PARTNER can save us, deliver us, or give meaning to our lives. The source of our salvation, deliverance, and meaning is within us. It is the love we give as much as it is the love we get. The passion we need to feed is our relationship to God. This is ultimately our relationship with ourselves.

It's not as easy as a good date, as much fun as sex, or as dramatic as romantic tension. It is work. Personal growth, recovery, religious practice, spiritual renewal - whatever words we care to use - these are the keys to our return to sanity and peace. When we have reclaimed our wholeness, we are ready to face the worldly beloved. Until then, we will look to a romantic partner to give us peace rather than remember that our role in the relationship is to BRING peace, by receiving it from God allowing him to spread his peace through us to all mankind.

How often I have betrayed myself, forgetting - or more accurately, resisting - the twenty minutes of meditation, the hour of reading, the spiritual meeting or recovery group that would prepare me for the roller coaster ride that always lies potential in an intimate relationship. Part of our problem is that we expect love affairs to always feel good. They don't. Actually, relationships don't feel good anyway. We feel good. Unless we are centered within ourselves, we cannot blame a relationship for throwing us off. No man can convince a woman she's wonderful, but if she already believes she is, his agreement can resonate and bring her joy.

This is our function in each other's lives: to hold the space for each other's beauty, that our beloved can leave us and we still feel in his absence how beautiful we are."

- Marianne Williamson





Friday, July 7

beyond


"You meet another person and there are qualities in that personality which offend you and there are qualities which attract you - some qualities seduce you - some qualities repel you - some qualities sexually excite you - some qualities revolt you - some qualities interest you - some qualities fascinate you - some qualities bore you. It's only when you can see through all that veil...through all your own desires... Beyond Sita walking in the path that you can see beyond all that to where the other being is." - Ram Dass


Thursday, July 6

siempre existes dondequiera


"Porque te tengo y no -
porque te pienso -
porque la noche está de ojos abiertos -
porque la noche pasa y digo amor -
porque has venido a recoger tu imagen -
y eres mejor que todas tus imágenes -

porque eres linda desde el pie hasta el alma -

porque eres buena desde el alma a mi -
porque te escondes dulce en el orgullo -
pequeña y dulce -
corazón coraza -

porque eres mía -
porque no eres mía -
porque te miro y muero -
y peor que muero -
si no te miro amor -
si no te miro - 

porque tu siempre existes dondequiera -
pero existes mejor donde te quiero -
porque tu boca es sangre -
y tienes frío -
tengo que amarte amor -
tengo que amarte -
aunque esta herida duela como dos -
y aunque -
la noche pase y yo te tenga -
y no."

- Mario Benedetti 


Wednesday, July 5

sin saber cómo, ni cuándo, ni de dónde, te amo


"No te amo como si fueras rosa de sal, topacio o flecha de claveles que propagan el fuego:

te amo como se aman ciertas cosas oscuras, secretamente, entre la sombra y el alma.

Te amo como la planta que no florece y lleva dentro de sí, escondida, la luz de aquellas flores, y gracias a tu amor vive oscuro en mi cuerpo el apretado aroma que ascendió de la tierra.

Te amo sin saber cómo, ni cuándo, ni de dónde, te amo directamente sin problemas ni orgullo:
así te amo porque no sé amar de otra manera, sino así de este modo en que no soy ni eres, tan cerca que tu mano sobre mi pecho es mía, tan cerca que se cierran tus ojos con mi sueño."

- Pablo Neruda

***

"I do not love you as if you were salt-rose, or topaz, or the arrow of carnations the fire shoots off.

I love you as certain dark things are to be loved, in secret, between the shadow and the soul.

I love you as the plant that never blooms
but carries in itself the light of hidden flowers;

thanks to your love a certain solid fragrance, risen from the earth, lives darkly in my body.

I love you without knowing how, or when, or from where. I love you straightforwardly, without complexities or pride; 

so I love you because I know no other way than this:  

where "I" does not exist, nor "you,"
so close that your hand on my chest is my hand, so close that your eyes close as I fall asleep."

- Pablo Neruda translated by Stephen Tapscott

snapshot - bronze sculpture suspended by endless unconventional pearls and vintage silks