Season of Light

IMG_4754[Parliament Of Wolves]

It has arrived, the light I mean; daylight savings is a glorious time.  It means I can head out at six o’clock with the dogs to run or walk on the mountain while that amazing 24k light is pouring itself out heavily on the earth, molten and redemptive.  If it wasn’t so beautiful, I would feel affronted, or if I was wicked in my soul I would feel found out by it.  It’s that kind of light.  I know the light aims to bless, so I receive it as such; take up the wild rush of it as though I am drinking it, savage with thirst– I drink it up like a wild woman.

We are already hurtling towards the summer solstice.  Night is in decay while day grows robust and long.  I never get tired of these big shifts!  They’re tremendously energizing.  Just when I think I have nothing left to give our planet begins to tilt in a new direction and I feel it with every bone in my body, even the tiny bones, the anvils and stirrups in my ears seem to ring with the heaven of it all.

I sat with the dogs in the sagebrush tonight, simply sat, alone and happy as the sun did its setting and night began to take back the sky.  The dogs were digging for voles, running wild and kicking the dust off their heels.  I can’t remember thinking about anything important, I was more concerned with simply laying with the land and taking it in with my senses.

I spent most of my day at the computer, tippity tapping with my blunt little fingertips, editing images, submitting this and that.  It was a productive day, though I have nothing truly tangible to show for my time and effort.

I suppose that’s why I just sat there in the sun and sage tonight.  More often than not, I feel ruined by technology — dumbed and dulled by it.  Sitting out in the dirt and wind helps me to take myself back and allows for an indwelling of the senses which is where true aliveness resides for me.


Life is beginning to get crazy here.  The fire season always makes everything crazy.  Right about now is when I buckle up and hold on tight.  There’s nothing that can be done about the insanity of pre-season.  It must be so easy for people, for couples, who live near the base they work out of, but for us, it’s complete chaos from now until we arrive in the Methow Valley.

I am finding that this season will take more intention and attention from us which is difficult when plans have to be made last minute (that’s just how fire is, terribly last minute).  How do you prepare to sell a house and move your life and a small business to a different state in an Airstream trailer when everything is so darn last minute?  I don’t know how we do it.  All our important dates are laid out like glass shards in dirt, janky and hazardous, prone to shifting in the breeze.  We’re trying to get a grip, but we don’t know on what.  We’re all cut up by attempting to set it in order.

If I could change anything about this fire life of ours, I would make things less last minute.  It’s my only true complaint. I never feel like I get to say goodbye.  Hellos catch me off guard.  My very self teeters wildly for months on end.  I’m tippy with the undependable nature of wildfire and everything that comes with it.

Despite all the impending chaos, I am going to have a completely ridiculous day in the studio tomorrow after a little time off and a few days of concentrated computing.  I can feel it in my bones.  Something good is coming.  The very thought of it makes me stand up straighter, with my palms lifted to the sky, ready to receive and ready to give until I’m all gived out.

Buckle up, buttercups.  It is the season of light.


:::Post Scriptus:::

Robbie is coming home on Monday.  He’s been away six weeks.  I am happy.  I am happy!

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Rivers and Roads

IMG_4204 IMG_4211IMG_4224IMG_4237IMG_4262IMG_4267IMG_4285IMG_4347IMG_4436IMG_4485IMG_4622I can be guilty of waiting around for Robert to be the impetus behind my life adventures.  I can be so burdened with creative focus (which really can be a blinding burden at times, and by that I mean, all consuming so that everything and everyone else in life gets dropped completely and existence is the suffering and glory of getting out of bed, creating until I’m exhausted, and falling back into bed…for days and days on end) that I simply cannot pull my mind and body away from the work.  So Robert pulls my mind and body away, and we go launch our raft on a river, walk out with backpacks into a mountain range, hunt antelope in the high desert or chase chukar for days.  He’s a planner and it makes us both doers.

When he isn’t home for these long stretches, the planning and the doing fall to me.  It’s when my body breaks down after too many consecutive days of work that I snap out of creative obsession and realize I need to step away, for the sake of my mind, but also for the sake of my neck, right shoulder and back.  So I do.  If I can.  I  load the truck, load the dogs, pack the Yeti, and head for the highway.  Half the time I don’t have a clue where I am going; the vapors of wanderlust have shrouded my head like lenticular puffs sliding over a mountain peak in curving wisps.  I pull the truck around, take the one way streets out of the valley bottom, turn on my ticker, enter the stream of traffic on the highway and like a salmon headed upriver I drive, drive, drive until the land and sky open up and I feel myself come home.

It doesn’t have to be the mountains.  Sometimes there’s too much emphasis put on the mountains as being THE PLACE to connect with the thing we’re all trying to get a firmer grip on.  For me it’s all about space and a general absence of humanity.  I just want to go somewhere that no one else is, grab my scrap of earth, twine my fingers down into it, watch the clouds canter in and out of space, glass for elk, deer and antelope, watch the hawks hunt, listen to the river run, hear the sound of the human world fade away.  I want to slide into a hot spring and simply let my mind drift into the world of daydreams while the wind ruffles the junipers.

I want to be alone, or alone with people who know my heart of hearts and are alright with me being silent.  I want to be with my dogs and run free like they do.  I want to fall into rhythm with the sun and moon; live my living while it’s light out, sleep when the stars rule the night, wake up with a cold nose and start a stove with numb fingers.  I want all the sharpness to return to my senses, I want steel blades for eyes, ears that hear the grass clanging in the breeze and the sometimes terrifying sense of being watched by wild and hungry eyes (I’ve always said the times I have felt most alive is when I have been hunted by something unseen).


I bought a day planner this year.  I’ve never had one before which is part of the reason I’ve been such a doggone flake part of my life (I think the other reason is simply that I like to feel free and sometimes forgetting seems like it takes me there).  I used to write myself little notes on scraps of paper that would flitter around the house and studio like giant pieces of confetti.  It was chaos.  Now, I’ve never been so organized!  I told a friend recently that when I look down at the pages of my day planner, swimming with fresh ink and penciled in messages (like a black bears claw marks on an aspen) I sometimes feel like every booking I make, like a civilized little human being, is bleeding my wildness out of me.

But then again, every day I shift towards a state of complete un-domestication, I mean I move entropically towards the state of being feral — tangled hair, wild eyebrows, flickering eyes, and the quaking desire to lope across foothills and drink from rivers.  I grow gradually unkept until I wake up one morning and the scale has tipped fully to one side and I need to break out, I have to satiate my need for space and freedom.  I love the things that keep me on the edge of tame, but I also like to buck it all off and gallop like cuss to a wide open place where nothing can own me.


Idaho has been top notch lately; sunny and warm between snow squalls and rain.  The hot springs have been boiling and tranquil, the antelope herds have been massive, the hawks have been claiming fenceposts and telephone poles when they’re not swirling around in thin air.  The mountain peaks have been nothing short of mystical — chanting life into the clouds up where they build and break open.  The foothills are already chirping with song birds, the magpies are building nests, I hear the song of the yellow-winged blackbird rising up from the river behind the house here and elsewhere, the steelhead are coming in — shining like bright polished sterling.  It’s always a good day to be Idahoan, but it’s especially good lately.  I’m not sure any other rivers and roads will bring me home, time and time again, quite like these do.

Time Is On My Side

Sometimes, when I get overwhelmed, I put this on and sway around for a little while.  I know.  That’s probably weird.

Snippets From My Journal:

IMG_3496Every morning we wake up and choose.  There are always things to be:

Courageous or cowardly.

Free or enslaved.

Unique or generic.

Truthful or false.

Hardworking or lazy.

Celebratory or covetous.

Supportive or envious.

This list continues to the horizon and wraps itself around the earth infinitely.  We are always choosing.  How you choose to be will follow you no matter where you go, no matter how far you run.  We make our beds and then we lay in them;   we sleep soundly on the smooth spots and feel our hip bones dig into the rumples as our legs stretch and cramp to span the rifts.

We sow our seeds and watch what grows.

And each of us lives with consequence and we all bear the burden and bliss of lessons in our hearts.


So much murk is coming clear for me in work, in my relationships, in my conscience.  I am learning.  Slowly and surely.  I’m old enough now to recognize there is a lesson in everything if you root through the details enough, if you take the time to earnestly seek the truth.  I’m not so much a coward to disown my wrong living and wrongdoing in this life.  I try to turn around and face it as courageously as I can, fix it if I might, forsake the actions and thoughts that led me to a bad place or to hurt others.  I do my best not to run, not from anything.


I have a firm grip on the concepts of justice and compassion right now.  These two things are vastly different from revenge and pity.  I’m thankful I chose one path and not the other, as hard as that choice was, at times.


A notion that surfaces daily here is the idea that we are all responsible for the state of our own souls.  We all have a metallic compass spinning round in our hearts and minds, we act according to our conscience, or against our conscience, every moment of every day.

People cry out, “Do not judge me!”  But the truth is, we have already judged ourselves; the guilt and shame lays waste to our hearts and minds.  Why not be free of it?  Why not own it all, your successes and your failures as a human, so that you can move forward and do your very best once more?

Is there something about yourself you cannot stand, something you feel shameful about?  Own it.  Fully.  Walk away from it every moment of every day.  Choose to be differently.  Watch yourself change and feel yourself grow.


I want to cloak myself in light which means I must peel myself away from the darkness, again and again.


Big things happen in life, in work.  Sometimes I feel afraid, I wonder if I am in over my head, I wonder if I am worthy of  it all, I wonder if I am capable of excelling brilliantly at the jobs given to me.  I never pretend to know what I am doing.  More often than not, I say yes and then I wing it — figure it out as I go along.  I’m never too proud to ask for help.  I’m never insecure about the degree of my experience, I am upfront about it, believing with all my heart that if I wasn’t truly wanted for the work, I would not have been chosen.  I trust myself to find my way and when I feel lost, I look to the light, walk out in the dark of morning to remember the North Star where it sits spinning on the just fingertip of God.

I tell my friends my fears and they remind me of everything I know I am, deep in my heart.

We all know what we are, deep in our hearts.  Sometimes we aren’t able to voice the truth of the matter yet, or we have forgotten ourselves, or if it’s an awful part of ourselves, we’ve repressed the thorny truth in some dank corner of our minds, but it’s always there, the knowing.

We improve ourselves or we don’t; we grow, or we don’t.


I trust in the work of my hands, in the place it comes from.

I trust myself.

I will never feel the need to wake up in the morning and crawl into the skin of another, to proceed pretendingly, to waste myself.  There is no meaning for me in any of this if it doesn’t truly come from me.

I will use my own sight, I will use my own thoughts, I will use my own words.

Even when I feel scared, I will work my truest and hardest, clear my throat, lift my chin and allow that bright thing that is only mine to share to rise up from me, ride through the tunnel of my chest and mouth into the sky and rest there like a constellation and not fade away.

Of A Feather

IMG_3959 IMG_3963Also for the shop, in a few moments: Of A Feather Bead Strands.  So much fun to make, so much fun to wear, and built in some seriously sublime color combinations.