A Community of the Spirit

Rumi. I always come back to Rumi. A poet who lived so long ago with words that make perfect sense now. This time it’s A Community of the Spirit. Every phrase of this does indeed make sense to me. This one – ‘feel the delight of walking in the noisy street and being the noise’ – calls me to be willing to speak up when called upon. And this – ‘close both your eyes to see with the other eye’ – speaks to the urgent need to see beyond what I think… Read More

In Summary…Staying Open

This past week in blogging and posting I highlighted what I’ve been doing this entire past month, that is, intentionally staying open – reading every thing I can get my hands on, listening and learning, sifting through, speaking up and writing it down. The word of this week (and actually this whole time) has been Enséñame. A prayer from Dr. Clarissa Pinkola Estés meaning ‘Show me. Teach me.’ You can read my short blog about it here. The poem of the week was Rumi’s Chickpea to Cook and I shared it on my… Read More

Speak Only Love

I attended a poetry reading a couple of years ago where a local poet, Ketu Oladuwa, read some of his work. All powerfully written. Spoken from a place of undeniable truth. One snippet cut me to the core and made me dig for a pen to jot it down. It was the following: Don’t fight to overcome fighting. Don’t politicize to overcome politics. Don’t convince to overcome self-righteousness. Step back from all of that. Look, listen and love. Then speak only that. I’ve revisited those words so many times in the years since,… Read More

Stillness in Action

This blog was initially written July 25, 2016. An addendum dated Sept. 21, 2016 follows. Our thoughts and patterns and structures create our emotions and become reality. I’ve known this truth for many years and repeatedly come back to it whenever I find myself in a place of fear, worry, anger and hopelessness. After reading headline upon headline in the past several weeks – gun violence, refugee crises, the escalating hatred and bigotry expressed during this election season – I could feeling myself swimming in those reactive thoughts and emotions once again. Thankfully I was… Read More

The Journey – by Mary Oliver

The Journey, by Mary Oliver – a biggie for me. Resonates deeply. Every day is a new start – a new facing off with the voices that shout their bad advice. I feel myself addressing those voices – thanking some for their past service, asking others to get the hell out and don’t come back, directing still others to go sit on the couch and take a nap for the afternoon. A conscious choice to move into a different flow with my own truest voice on the bullhorn. I’ve learned to recognize… Read More

Ode to Dad

Always a sweet, nostalgic weekend when Father’s Day rolls around. This year feeling a little silly so I wrote a limerick for my full-Irish father coupled with some new artwork. My pops, he was a true bowling champ Who weekly pitched spheres down the long ramp. His nickname was Shorty A real hoot, oh lordy. He would howl that his ball’s now a lamp. A close up showing his initialed ball – C.P.O. for Clarence Patrick O’Connor. His hole-in-one trophy serves as finial on top. The art piece that hangs near the lamp… Read More

A Palindrome for Pachyderms

Inspired by our time at Thailand’s Elephant Nature Park, I gave my brain a workout and created a poem in the palindrome style. Palindromes read the same forward as backward – a bit tricky, but fun to try and capture the essence of the message within the structure. This one – A Palindrome for Pachyderms – tells the story of elephants used and abused for the tourism trade who are rescued and given a chance to remember the wild. You can learn more about this transformation from my blog about our time at… Read More

Relax and Listen

We read voraciously in order to keep up with the ceaseless tide of excellent literature. We read to our babies and kids so they too can become lovers of good books. Rarely, however do we adults have the pleasure of being read to. I was recently reminded of how gratifying it can be when I attended a poetry reading hosted by George Kalamaras, Indiana’s Poet Laureate.  No need to turn pages. No worry of proper lighting. No 1.25’s positioned low on my nose. No ability to read and reread to dissect and… Read More

Stillness

“saunters an elderly lady in a bright yellow bonnet not even the screaming child next to her can shake her from the stillness of her dream.  detached from my body, yet more deeply rooted in it than I had ever been.  simply a moving meditation. I had to stop dancing to feel the dance.  whole new range of motion. strange forces would be set loose.”   Created April 11, 2013 with a copy of page 177 of Gabrielle Roth’s book, Sweat Your Prayers, and marker. 

Lyrical

“Lyrical is an airborne rhythm,  When our psyches take flight in the airy dance of lyrical, our imaginations are liberated.  Lyrical imagination is grounded in intuition which has been honed in chaos. Therefore we have to trust that whatever kooky schemes we come up with must have sprouted from the fertile soil of our intuitive intelligence.  Victims need not apply.”   Created April 11, 2013 with a copy of page 159 of Gabrielle Roth’s book, Sweat Your Prayers, fibrous paper, and colored pencil. 

Regina Leffers McCaleb, Ph.D.

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