HER-story:

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

Friday, March 31

I need to begin making photo albums for my daughter


in the arms of my beautiful aunt...

vintage snapshot from my baby albums 


Thursday, March 30

believe





...if you believe with all your might she'll make your dreams come true...

snapshots from shadows dancing on my walls (do you see the fairy?) and of my blessed little fairy goddess daughter 



Wednesday, March 29

my place in the family


"You do not have to be good.

You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert repenting.

You only have to let the soft animal of your body love what it loves.

Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.

Meanwhile the world goes on.

Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain are moving across the landscapes, over the prairies and the deep trees, the mountains and the rivers.

Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air, are heading home again.

Whoever you are, no matter how lonely, the world offers itself to your imagination, calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting over and over announcing your place in the family of things."

- Mary Oliver

a small corner of my world 






Tuesday, March 28

has every saint lost her wildness?


"...in 1450 a beautiful Celtic mermaid named Asenora swam ashore on the coast of Cornwall where a Benedictine monastery had recently been established. After removing her fish tail and hiding it among the rocks, she explored the area on foot and discovered the community of men. She made many clandestine visits – -

....Suspicious that Asenora was no ordinary woman but a mermaid, and greatly alarmed by her presence, the abbot of the monastery hid himself by the water and waited. He witnessed Asenora swim ashore, remove her fish tail and hide it in a niche in the cliff.

When she wandered off in the direction of the abbey, the shrewd abbot retrieved the fish tail, bundling it into his robe. He tucked it inside a secret compartment hidden under the seat of his chair, in the church. Without her tail, the poor mermaid could never go back to the sea, and soon the wildness of it drained out of her. Asenora was converted, and eventually became Saint Senara...”

excerpt from “The Mermaid Chair” a novel by Sue Monk Kidd @ 2005



Monday, March 27

eleven months on the new moon


my daughter has turned my life upside-down in the most blessed ways, showing me new perspectives...

stay wild my child...

selfie from a playful series


Sunday, March 26

you've got the wrong goddess


Sekhmet, The Lion-Headed Goddess Of War


"He was the sort of man
who wouldn't hurt a fly. 
Many flies are now alive
while he is not. 
He was not my patron. 
He preferred full granaries, I battle. 
My roar meant slaughter. 
Yet here we are together 
in the same museum. 
That's not what I see, though, the fitful 
crowds of staring children 
learning the lesson of multi- 
cultural obliteration, sic transit 
and so on. 

I see the temple where I was born 
or built, where I held power. 
I see the desert beyond, 
where the hot conical tombs, that look 
from a distance, frankly, like dunces' hats, 
hide my jokes: the dried-out flesh 
and bones, the wooden boats 
in which the dead sail endlessly 
in no direction. 

What did you expect from gods 
with animal heads? 
Though come to think of it 
the ones made later, who were fully human 
were not such good news either. 
Favour me and give me riches, 
destroy my enemies. 
That seems to be the gist. 
Oh yes: And save me from death. 
In return we're given blood 
and bread, flowers and prayer, 
and lip service. 

Maybe there's something in all of this 
I missed. But if it's selfless 
love you're looking for, 
you've got the wrong goddess. 

I just sit where I'm put, composed 
of stone and wishful thinking: 
that the deity who kills for pleasure 
will also heal, 
that in the midst of your nightmare, 
the final one, a kind lion 
will come with bandages in her mouth 
and the soft body of a woman, 
and lick you clean of fever, 
and pick your soul up gently by the nape of the neck 
and caress you into darkness and paradise."
- Margaret Atwood

Saturday, March 25

beautiful laughter

- 2013 mixed media on canvas from a series exploring painting as poetry and meditation -
"Keep squeezing drops of the Sun
from your prayers and work and music
and from your companion's beautiful laughter.

Keep squeezing drops of the Sun -
from the sacred hands and glance of your Beloved
and, my dear,
from the most insignificant movements
of your own holy body."
- HAFIZ



Friday, March 24

healing


"Buried in the recesses of your family's history you may find secrets. Due to cultural and societal prohibitions, these facts about the family typically remain repressed, as are the strong feelings associated with these secrets. There's considerable shame that prevents these secrets from being acknowledged and dealt with, so they become toxic to other family members.

...these repressed feelings and behaviors get projected onto others in the family, who then act out these toxic feelings without being aware of their original source...

Sometimes the secrets are so huge that discovering the truth behind them changes someone's life around 180 degrees. 

...When these secrets remain buried, they end up being projected onto other people or passed along through the generations...The poisonous influence of family secrets can remain in the lineage for several generations, often enacted by one or more family members until there is active healing.

There are a number of resources for healing this ancestral karma, and it's often though the healing journey that someone finds out about these secrets. Once the secrets are brought out into the open, there's opportunity to release their hold on the family members, and subsequent generations will no longer have to carry them...

...Being secrets, they are often submerged under layers of guilt and shame yet are often acted out or projected onto others...

...The secrets, as well as the act of keeping secrets, continue to be forwarded until someone in the lineage is willing to tackle these issues and seek healing for the damage done."

- Dr. Steven D. Farmer

detail from a recent mixed media on paper 






Thursday, March 23

this


THE HOUSE OF BELONGING by David Whyte

"I awoke
this morning

in the gold light
turning this way
and that

thinking for
a moment
it was one
day
like any other.

But
the veil had gone
from my
darkened heart
and
I thought

it must have been the quiet
candlelight
that filled my room,

it must have been
the first
easy rhythm
with which I breathed
myself to sleep,

it must have been
the prayer I said
speaking to the otherness
of the night.

And
I thought
this is the good day
you could
meet your love,

this is the black day
someone close
to you could die.

This is the day
you realize
how easily the thread
is broken
between this world
and the next

and I found myself
sitting up
in the quiet pathway
of light,

the tawny
close grained cedar
burning round
me like fire
and all the angels of this housely
heaven ascending
through the first
roof of light
the sun has made.

This is the bright home
in which I live,
this is where
I ask
my friends
to come,
this is where I want
to love all the things
it has taken me so long
to learn to love.

This is the temple
of my adult aloneness
and I belong
to that aloneness
as I belong to my life.

There is no house
like the house of belonging."
- David Whyte

I woke up thinking of this poem...


Wednesday, March 22

tus quince mil encantos


"entre el cielo y el suelo hay algo,
con tendencia a quedarse calvo,
de tanto recordar,
y ese algo que soy yo mismo,
es un cuadro de bifrontismo,
que sólo da una faz,

la cara vista es un anuncio de signal,
la cara oculta es la resulta,
de mi idea genial de echarte,
me cuesta tanto olvidarte,
me cuesta tanto,

olvidar quince mil encantos es
mucha sensatez
y no sé si seré sensato
lo que sé es que me cuesta un rato
hacer las cosas sin querer

y aunque fui yo quien decidió
que ya no más
y no me cansé se jurarte
que no habrá segunda parte
me cuesta tanto olvidarte
me cuesta tanto..." - José M. Cano

mixed media from a series


Tuesday, March 21

the way he loves me


"How nice, I remember thinking. It will be so much fun to have Barry as a friend. I certainly didn't think we were going to fall in love...

Our relationship was unique from day one and quite unexplainable...I was overwhelmed by the way he loved me...gave into me, trusted me blindly, and loved me unconditionally...Never, ever, even for a second, under any circumstances, has he not been there for me. And that's pretty amazing. 

There was passion between us; love, support, honesty. There was never anything forced between us...the way he loves me is true and unique."

- Diane Von Furstenberg

detail from painted silk, circa 2003 or 2004



Monday, March 20

equinox


spring blessings...

this image of my beloved little fairy goddess was originally captured on Snapchat by my sister, Christine Sacasa and was then playfully filtered on a smartphone 

it may become part of a little book I am working on...


Sunday, March 19

silence


"Contain your experience with the Divine so that it does not escape you but rather shapes you. 

Be silent. 

Silence will help you avoid engaging in the games of competition and illusion that regularly seduce us in the outside world. Silence also helps you avoid distraction. It helps focus the busy mind - the mind that always has to be doing something, thinking something, the mind that always has to be otherwise engaged lest it become introspective and allow the soul’s voice to override its own. 

The silence I am describing is a silence that you use to contain the grace you receive when you enter the Castle of your soul. This quality of silence allows you to engage in discernment. 

You carry this silence within you, even when you are with others. It allows you to hold your center amid the chaos of your life; it keeps you clear so that you do not do or say things you will regret or make decisions out of fear. “

- Caroline Myss


Saturday, March 18

unexpected


"I don't believe in rules. I think it's the heart that should talk. The first thing about love is that you have to love yourself. No relationship will work unless you do...I wanted to be his friend. I thought he would be a good friend to have. But we were completely taken over by passion, and it was completely, utterly unexpected on both sides. That made it more exciting, because it was so unexpected...Yes, I do believe in soul mates."
- Diane von Fürstenberg

mixed media on paper


Friday, March 17

after a week of sleepless nights


"...Rumor has it that he was so taken with her beautiful eyes that he went out and bought over a hundred pairs of sunglasses for her to wear to cover her eyes whenever she left her house so no one would fall in love the way he did..."

- S. Daniels 

selfie snapshot: after a week of sleepless nights (motherhood)...no make-up, just gargantuan glasses and fun photo filters with my fabulous friend...



Thursday, March 16

no quiero que me bese


I walked upon a melting blanket of white spring snow under a crisp blue sky with my babe. Her little head rested upon my heart. Birds sang messages.

Forgive.

Let go.

Ignore.

The wind howled warnings. 

The woman emerged from the house. She tried to look away, but I was walking straight towards her. I smiled. We both said hello. When I leaned in to embrace her, the woman backed off and said she did not want me to kiss her.    

"No quiero que me bese."

This same woman welcomes kisses on her cheeks from the men she serves and works for. She giggles around these men as if she were being tickled.

"Si, Señor. Si mi Jefe."

Perhaps the woman is suffering from a cold or some contagious disease and did not wish to expose my child to it. She is most certainly suffering.

I wished her well and sent her blessings.

"Cuídese. Bendiciones."

This is not the first time this woman rejects my kindness and genuine affection. What hurts me the most is that she seems to resent and reject my innocent children.

She may have emotional and psychological issues. She may simply dislike me. She is definitely teaching me.

Forgive.

Let go.

Ignore.

Anger rose from my belly as I walked away. Why had I smiled? Why had I leaned in to embrace this hostile, unhappy being? When would I learn my lesson? 

My baby girl looked up at me and gave me a wise, soulful smile. I kissed her and kissed her.

Forgive.

Let go.

Ignore.





Wednesday, March 15

fruta


"Woman is like a fruit which will only yield its fragrance when rubbed by the hands. Take for example the basil: unless it be warmed by the fingers, it emits no perfume. And do you know that unless amber is warmed and manipulated it retains it's aroma within? The same with women: if you do not animate her with frolics and kisses, with nibbling of her thighs and close embraces, you will not obtain what you desire: you will experience no pleasure when she shares your couch and she will feel no affection for you." - Sir Richard Burton, circa 1886

excerpt from a delicious book my Latin Lover gifted me many moons ago

snapshot: watermelon, from a series of fruit 

Tuesday, March 14

tempted

- "Pomegranate Kiss" mixed media on paper circa 2007 -
Eve had the infamous apple

Persephone her pomegranate

...what is your fruit?

your temptation and pleasure?

"I said to my reflection,
let's get out of this place
...memories of it still
keep calling and calling
but forget  it all
I know I will
tempted by the fruit of another
tempted but the truth is discovered
what's been going on
now that you have gone
there's no other...
your body gets much closer
I fumble for the clock
alarmed by the seduction
I wish that it would stop
I bought a novel, some perfume
a fortune all for you
but it's not my conscience
that hates to be untrue
I asked my reflection
tell me what is there to do?
tempted by the fruit of another..." 
- Glenn Tilbrook and Chris Difford


Monday, March 13

los hombres que la amaban


Como a todas las muchachas del mundo,
también a Ella,
tejiéronla 
con sus sueños,
los hombres que la amaban.

Y yo la amaba.

Pudo ser para otros un rostro 
que el Viento del Olvido 
borra a cada instante.
Pudo ser,
pero yo la amaba.

Yo veía las cosas más sencillas
volverse misteriosas
cuando Ella las tocaba.
Porque las estrellas de la noche
¡Ella con su mano las sembraba!

Los días de esmeralda,
los pájaros tranquilos,
los rocíos azules,
¡Ella los creaba!

Yo me emocionaba
con sólo verla pisar la hierba.

¡Ah si tus ojos me miraran todavía!

Esta noche no tendría tanta noche.
Esta noche la lluvia caería sin mojarme.

Porque la lluvia no empapa
a los que se pierden 
en el bosque de sus sueños relucientes,
y sus días no terminan
y son sus noches transparentes.

¿Dónde estás ahora?
¿En qué ciudad,
en qué penumbra,
en cuál bosque
te desconocen las luciérnagas?

Tal vez mientras escribo,
estás en un suburbio,
sola, inerme, abandonada...

¡Abandonada, no!

En tu ausencia
mi corazón todas las tardes muere.


- Manuel Scorza (1928-1983)

Sunday, March 12

intimate friends


"Like two golden birds perched on the selfsame tree, intimate friends, the ego and the Self dwell in the same body.  The former eats the sweet and sour fruits of the tree of life, while the latter looks on in detachment." - The Mundaka Upanishad

mixed media from my journals 



Saturday, March 11

irresistible


"She was so extraordinarily beautiful that I nearly laughed out loud...I fell in love with her at once.  She was like a mirage of beauty of the ages, irresistible, like a pull of gravity.  She has everything I want in a woman." - Richard Burton (1925-1984)

mixed media on paper


Friday, March 10

tell the truth now

- 2013 mixed media on paper -

"Do I move you?  Are you willing?
Do I groove you?  Is it thrilling?
Do I soothe you?  Tell the truth now,
Do I move you?  Are you loose now?
The answer better be - YES, yes...it pleases me.

Are you ready for this action?
Does it give you satisfaction?
Are you hip to what I'm saying?
If you are then let's start swaying.
The answer better be - YES, yes...it pleases me.

When I touch you, do you quiver?
From your head down to your liver?
If you like it let me know it...
Don't be psychic or you'll blow it...
The answer better be - YES, yes...that pleases me."
- Nina Simone


Thursday, March 9

mouth to feet


"When she closed her eyes she felt he had many hands, which touched her everywhere, and many mouths, which passed so swiftly over her, and with a wolf-like sharpness, his teeth sank into her fleshiest parts. Naked now, he lay his full length over her. She enjoyed his weight on her, enjoyed being crushed under his body. She wanted him soldered to her, from mouth to feet. Shivers passed through her body."
- Anais Nin (1903-1977)

detail from 2015 mixed media on canvas 


Wednesday, March 8

fiercely feminine


I celebrate women every single day.

I dedicate my life to remembering HERstory.

I am surrounded by fiercely feminine goddesses.

My grandmothers and their mothers and their mothers.

My mother.

My sister.

My aunts and cousins.

My friends.

My daughter.

I am fiercely and unapologetically feminine and a fearless roaring lioness when it comes to defending those I love.



Tuesday, March 7

Mimi visits my dreams


I dreamed with my grandmother last night. We were in a grand palace. A celebration was taking place. There was music and laughter.

My grandmother wore white and an enormous diamond ring that created rainbows all around her.  People gathered  as if to bathe in the dancing colors and light. 

A blonde woman whom I have never met sat nearby. She wore an ill-fitting white suit that appeared to be from the 1980s. She approached me and whispered:
"Do not ask me questions that make me uncomfortable." She had an exaggerated French accent. I looked down and noticed her worn, black shoes were at least one size too big.

I glanced back at my grandmother who smiled mischievously and winked...

Monday, March 6

pretending

- 2013 watercolor from the series titled "A Thousand Kisses Deep" -

"I saw you last night at the gathering,

but could not take you openly in my arms,

so I put my lips next to your cheek,

pretending to talk privately." - RUMI


Sunday, March 5

mariposas hambrientas


"Me siento morir en ti, atravesado de espacios que crecen, que me comen igual que mariposas hambrientas.

Cierro los ojos y estoy tendido en tu memoria, apenas vivo, con los abiertos labios donde remonta el río del olvido.

Y tu, con delicadas pinzas de paciencia me arrancas los dientes, las pestañas, me desnudas el trébol de la voz, la sombra del deseo, vas abriendo en mi nombre ventanas al espacio y agujeros azules en mi pecho por donde los veranos huyen lamentándose.

Transparente, aguzado, entretejido de aire floto en la duermevela, y todavía digo tu nombre y te despierto acongojada.

Pero te esfuerzas y me olvidas, yo soy apenas la burbuja que te refleja, que destruirás con sólo un parpadeo."
- Julio Cortázar 

   ~~~

"I feel myself dying in you, overtaken by expanding spaces, which feed on me like hungry butterflies. 

I close my eyes and I'm laid out in your memory, barely alive, with my mouth wide open and the river of oblivion rising. 

And you, patiently, with needle-nosed pliers, pull out my teeth, my eyelashes, you strip the clover from my voice, the shade from my desire, you open up windows of space in my name and blue holes in my chest through which the summers rush out in mourning.

Transparent, sharpened, interwoven with air I float in a drowse, and still I say your name and wake you, anguished. 

But you force yourself to forget me, and I'm barely a bubble reflecting you, which you'll burst with the blink of an eye." 
- Julio Cortázar translated by Stephen Kessler 




Saturday, March 4

enter your sleep


"I would like to watch you sleeping, 
which may not happen.
I would like to watch you, 
sleeping. I would like to sleep 
with you, to enter 
your sleep as its smooth dark wave 
slides over my head

and walk with you through that lucent 
wavering forest of bluegreen leaves 
with its watery sun and three moons 
towards the cave where you must descend, 
towards your worst fear.

I would like to give you the silver 
branch, the small white flower, the one 
word that will protect you 
from the grief at the center 
of your dream, from the grief 
at the center. I would like to follow 
you up the long stairway 
again and become
the boat that would row you back
carefully, a flame
in two cupped hands 
to where your body lies 
beside me, and you enter 
it as easily as breathing in.

I would like to be the air
that inhabits you for a moment
only. I would like to be that unnoticed
and that necessary."
- Margaret Atwood

unnoticed and necessary...
air...breath...yes...to enter your dreams

Friday, March 3

more

- mixed media -
“I want to see you. Know your voice. Recognize you when you first come 'round the corner. Sense your scent when I come into a room you've just left. Know the lift of your heel, the glide of your foot. Become familiar with the way you purse your lips then let them part, just the slightest bit, when I lean in to your space and kiss you. I want to know the joy of how you whisper "more”... - RUMI

Thursday, March 2

attuned


"My life is fruitful and abundant. Just as the earth has its cycles and seasons, so, too, our own lives have times of planting, times of growth and times of harvest."


"So much of my frustration comes from my refusal to accept life's seasons as they come to me."


"An adolescent child enters a period of rebellion. This is necessary to full maturation. A project at the midpoint is sprawling and unwieldy. This, too, is necessary. A marriage enters a time of solo growth and trajectories as each partner pursues independent interests. However unsettling, this, too, is healthy."


"Not all seasons lie serene in the sun, yet each has its place. As I ask to be attuned to life's cycles, I feel my anxiety slipping away. I rest in the faith that all is unfolding according to right timing. I am where I should be when I should be. I am alert to the good of every moment."
- Julia Cameron

images: mixed media on paper from a series of work in progress





Wednesday, March 1

fertility


"When a woman feels alone, when the room is full of daemons,” the Nootka tribe tells us, "The Old Woman will be there.” She has come to me over three thousand miles and what does she have to tell me, troubled "by phantoms in the night”? 

Is she really here? 
What is the saving word from so deep in the past. 
From as deep as the ancient root of the redwood, from as deep as the primal bed of the ocean, from as deep as a woman’s heart sprung open again through a hard birth or a hard death? 
Here under the shock of love, I am open to you, Primal Spirit, one with rock and wave, one with survivors of flood and fire, who have rebuilt their homes a million times, who have lost their children and borne them again. 
The words I hear are strength, laughter, endurance. 
Old Woman I meet you deep inside myself. There in the root bed of fertility, world without end, as the legend tells it. 
Under the words you are my silence."
- May Sarton

snapshot of bronze sculpture suspended by pearls