Stones Mood

Sympathy For The Devil

You Can’t Always Get What You Want

Moonlight Mile


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Set Them Free

Landscapes & NatureHappy October! New beginnings are here now post-eclipse! Whoooooosh! Ever-evolving change, growth and blossoming is an interesting and rich process. Yeah! I give thanks for the journey, even though it is extremely arduous at times and thus requires extreme self-care.

It’s all about perspective… yep, excellent reminder from an ally. I discovered that an important piece of my BLACK post was incorrect in that it was generated from looking at the picture of new, fresh, relational love from a negative perspective, and I’m delighted to be corrected into a more positive viewpoint, with heart-connection intact.

I began my first black painting last Saturday. I’m glad I pushed through my resistance to going because the class was excellent and fun, too. There were a few insights during Sunday meditation about the class and this work in progress. I’m grateful to have an excellent mentor in Professor Nash to guide me through the murky waters. He hears me, sees me, and allows me to do what I want, plus he stands by to support the implementation of my vision. There is very deep wish fulfillment in this process of learning to paint with him, as well as in doing sculpture with Susannah Israel. Actually, I adore all of my creative endeavors, although drawing poses more of a motivational hurdle that I’m working through now. Learning from a skillful mentor makes all the difference in the unfolding. So now I begin to glimpse the blessings and abundant wealth shining within and through the black of my life. There are gifts to be gleaned from the grief and death sitting upon my shoulder, along with the heart I wear on my sleeve.

I’ve been looking at my first painting for almost a full week and can see that it needs a lot of detail work, as the ideas have percolated up from the foundation of the piece. The technical challenges will be fun to learn about and attempt to execute. I’m excited about the work and the story that’s unfolding in this painting. It’s a cooperative, collaborative painting about love, too, which is satisfying. And it’s very black for real… feels pleasing to me, even though it is far from finished. I plan to add a corpse for good measure.

If You Love Somebody, Sting & B. Marsalis

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Occupy My Mind

Occupy, Rising Appalachia

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Science & TechnologyI am in a new painting class on Saturdays. I enrolled early, decided to drop it, then an African-American Art History class was cancelled, so I picked up the painting again. Then the teacher, Professor Cookinham, became ill and diagnosed with stomach cancer, sent a note saying class cancelled and chemotherapy expected. At this point, it was too late in semester to register for another class and salvage my credit load and educational grant.

I received an inner prompt to take action and wrote to three people, including the Chair of the Art Dept. at Merritt (my Botanical Drawing professor), asking if a substitute could be found. I also suggested the Art History Professor Nash, who is a painter and whose class (mentioned previously) had been cancelled due to low enrollment. She went down her list of candidates and received four “no’s” before she called Professor N, who said “yes” and stepped in literally the day before the next scheduled class (Saturday before last).

There are a few interesting pieces to this story puzzle that subsequently unfolded. C and N have known one another since N was a child runaway at the age of nine (over 30 years) and are like family. C gave N his first professional painting supplies, which set him on the path of being a painter. C has been teaching this Saturday painting class for over 20 years, and it has become a tradition at Merritt College. It seems very fitting and fortuitous that N step in to fill C’s shoes, so to speak. In my eyes, I was just an instrument of Spirit — a small cog in the big wheels of destiny. Initially, I felt happy about the outcome because the class was able to continue. It felt good to feel my agency and power as a mover & shaker in networking again. I also like Professor Nash; he’s a comic and brings much-needed healing laughter, love and joy as well as a cutting wit to his pedagogical pursuit.

However, being in this class has surprisingly re-stimulated intense grief about my beloved confidante Geoph Kozeny’s untimely and rather sudden departure from this physical plane. There is also sadness about my sense of being deeply misunderstood by someone I care about, leading to another perceived loss of heart-connection and intimacy. October 22 will be the eight-year anniversary of Geoph’s passing and the nine-year anniversary of my departure from The Farm and living a life within the counterculture, where I actually feel much more at home in many ways because of my alternative, free-thinking, free-spirited bent. Yes, Geoph died exactly a year to the day of our separation — an ending and what we thought was the beginning of redefining our 12-year relationship; little did either of us know what was in store only a few months later. Stage 4 pancreatic cancer diagnosis means emaciation and dead in three months; he made it through four months, trooper and Love Warrior that he was.

This also marks nine solid years of celibacy for me, as I seek to heal myself and explore new ways of being in love and intimate relationship with others. These years have been difficult and lonely. I still haven’t found my way back to residential community life. I’m fine with living alone because I enjoy solitude at this stage of my life and the space to follow my creative adventures. My primary focus continues to be on holistic healing, after a long period of illness. Yet, I believe a crucial component of that healing includes emotional intimacy, touch and sexualove — a deep void in my life. I don’t care to embark upon the casual sex, internet dating, superficial club scene, or polyamorous path either.  I like feeling free to do what I feel called to do and liberated to spend my time as I wish, to love whomever my heart wants to love in freedom.

I’ve recently discovered, kicking and screaming all the way, that love and emotional sharing from my heart unbound (from old, socially conditioned ways of loving) looks enticingly different from anything I’ve been taught or experienced before. Sadly, that intimate sharing has not been reciprocal, yet the possibilities were inspiring to me. It was an adventure and a new way that I knew nothing about with someone who genuinely rocks my world in more ways than one. I feel alright with greeting love with a beginner’s mind as much as I can bring and not knowing where I’m being led or what’s in store on the horizon. That said, I cannot handle another re-wounding in love, painful unrequited love, or more losses of people I care about from my life.

I am more than ready to lay the grief to rest and discover the joys of black through my art, and this is near… very near. I feel the closeness, change, transition into something new, where grief holds a clear place at the table and I’m at peace with her presence. I seek a committed, stable, congruent, healthy love relationship with an equal partner who sees me, gets me, mutually supports, protects, provides nurturing and care … who is sex positive, trustworthy, enjoys art and who is fun to play with. I have a huge amount of drive and energy, and I’d like to share my love with someone who can match me energetically… at least some of the time. :-) This someone appears hard to find in our world that has been dominated by thousands of years of war and distrust between the sexes, yet I do believe Spirit has brought this person into my field, strange as that may sound. We all suffer from collective trauma and psycho-sexual wounding. We are literally embedded within a sick, patriarchal culture of domination, hierarchy and competition, so why expect equal treatment? It’s naive to do so and eventually brings painful disillusionment… better to accept the real truth of what is.

A number of the students in the class are also experiencing sadness, as they are heart-connected to C as their beloved painting mentor-teacher (some for many years). It’s a challenging mix for me to participate in, to say the least, because I’m an empath and highly sensitive to what others are feeling. If I could withdraw from the class, I probably would. I know there are good lessons to be learned, but I’m not sure I’m up for the emotional pain when I’m in a healing mode. I don’t like what is happening to me now and wonder why the Universe forces me to have these difficult lessons in service, love and honor. I would like a little love, peace, comfort and joy, damn it! It’s apparently up to me to find it and/or create this within myself whatever the circumstances. I trust that, even though I definitely cannot see it now, this is all leading me to a good place.

There are other factors that add to the complexity that I won’t share here because they are private; there are many areas of my life that I keep private, of course. Even though I am exploring a very uncomfortable growth edge in practicing more authenticity, transparency and truth-telling, as an experiment in personal growth coupled with social change (being the change I’d like to see in the world), I’m actually an intensely private, sensitive and introverted person. Revealing myself makes me feel vulnerable, yet also grows my strength and my co-creative voice. It’s a good way to get in touch with my fragile humanity, which is then reflected in everyone else I encounter. I make big mistakes, and then I learn new things.

After visiting a well of sadness and intermittent weeping for three days, as my heart is breaking wide open again with perceived wounding and the crushing pain and cruelty of this life, I feel tenderness, compassion and love for the radical woman of me. I also know that I want to explore the color BLACK fully in my paintings, in my interior regions, in my mind, in the world at large. I want to reclaim the color black, so I will begin with painting canvases all black, as beloved Keith Richards would have it. I’m a product of my cultural conditioning and black is the representative color of mourning. I feel in mourning and deep despair again, so this is part of the desire to explore black. But I want to re-frame this color into something ALIVE instead of DEAD, despite the fact that I feel the death walking all around in constant, neverending wars and within my beingness.

Fuck all the colors, the fears and misunderstandings they bring about, the bright light and bullshit! This butterfly with new wings wants to return to my safe cocoon and look deeply into the black because in this moment when I close my eyes, that’s all that I see … that’s what I feel. BLACK is my vision now! I feel my interior blackness… devoid of color; it is rich, warm and fecund; it is wet, savage, wild longing and desire; it is freedom and terror intersected. It is beautiful, and it is also ugly and disgusting. I want to listen to the black to see if it will eventually teach me something new that I need to know to make sense of what is happening to me. It is beyond duality and definitions, labels, and everything else this crazy-ass Industrial Growth Society lays onto this basic, primary color that is me.

Black is comforting. It is familiar, yet different each time that I visit. I like the NIGHT. I would walk more in the night if it were safe for me to do so here; unfortunately, as a woman in the City of Oakland, walking anywhere around here alone at night would be foolish. I’m used to the thunderstorms of existence and the calm aftermath. It’s the way that I grew up. It’s the nasty pattern and the source of creative inspiration. I like sleep and the healing and escape into darkness. I like how black makes everything possible, even if I don’t fully understand how or why. Mystery looks black to me; it is the dark well of water and the wellspring of spontaneous upsurge. I’m happy with mystery. Black means rest and peace right now. I don’t have to choose any other color or play any other game. I can keep my colors to myself and live with dark mystery in the colorless void of my soul reaches.

I love black lava, the cradle of fire from which life springs forth. I’d like to understand what it means to be black, although I know that I never will be able to understand. Just as no one will ever truly see and understand me, as sad and lonesome as that feels. I don’t need to understand. Let it be enough for me to hold myself with gentleness in the harshness of ignorance in this body and in this world. Let life teach me to love myself through my feelings of intense pain and heartache in the injustices. I hand my life over to black Spirit, sit in her loving lap of black goodness and know that She, the Dark One, loves me in my blackness just as much as when I am dancing in all my many vibrant colors. I AM BLACK and I WANT TO PAINT IT BLACK!! Anybody who doesn’t like it or wants to judge me WRONG or INAPPROPRIATE, who wants to assign erroneous concepts and labels to me, change or fix me can go jump in the black lake of black fire and BURN!

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Dance Still Bliss: Stand Tall

Science & Technology

In order to understand the dance one must be still. And in order to truly understand stillness one must dance. ~ Rumi

After the long hiatus, my first night out dancing in public last week to Electro-Bhakti beats experience guided by DJ Farzana was perfect for where I am at in my dance life — early evening hours; small group; safe, large and lovely venue at the Finnish-Kaleva Hall in Berkeley, complete with a wooden floor, a wall of windows flooding the room with light, energy and a cool breeze; and room to move and travel through space. I lost myself into a blissful, moving stillness for two hours (6-8 pm Thursday nights) and got in a good workout. My intention is to make this a regular, weekly practice.

djfarzanaBest of all, I enjoyed the pleasure of connecting with a dear friend and former neighbor my daughter and I lived next door to from 2008-13 — Andrea Prichett, a singer-songwriter, teacher and activist (her url link is below). She is the co-founder of CopWatch, a former member of Rebecca Riots and also happened to be my daughter’s History and English teacher at Willard Middle School.

I began listening to Rebecca Riots long before we moved to Berkeley and was introduced to their music when I lived at Sandhill Farm in Missouri. Today, I listen to their beautiful harmony as I complete the mundane, grounding, pleasurable chores of this quiet Sunday. Here are a couple of their lovely songs that are very special and dear to my heart.

Gardener, Rebecca Riots (Songwriter Eve Decker)

Stand Tall, Rebecca Riots (Songwriter Andrea Prichett)

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All I Really Want

Landscapes & Nature

A Rain Dance

Ai yi yi yi! 

I want rain!

And ________ (you fill in the blank) …. *smile*

All I Really Want, Alanis Morissette

“All I Really Want”

Do I stress you out
My sweater is on backwards and inside out
And you say how appropriate
I don’t want to dissect everything today
I don’t mean to pick you apart you see
But I can’t help it
There I go jumping before the gunshot has gone off
Slap me with a splintered ruler
And it would knock me to the floor if I wasn’t there already
If only I could hunt the hunter
And all I really want is some patience
A way to calm the angry voice
And all I really want is deliverance
Do I wear you out
You must wonder why I’m so relentless and all strung out
I’m consumed by the chill of solitary
I’m like Estella
I like to reel it in and then spit it out
I’m frustrated by your apathy
And I am frightened by the corrupted ways of this land
If only I could meet the Maker
And I am fascinated by the spiritual man
I am humbled by his humble nature
What I wouldn’t give to find a soulmate
Someone else to catch this drift
And what I wouldn’t give to meet a kindred
Enough about me, let’s talk about you for a minute
Enough about you, let’s talk about life for a while
The conflicts, the craziness and the sound of pretenses
Falling all around…all around
Why are you so petrified of silence
Here can you handle this?
Did you think about your bills, your ex, your deadlines
Or when you think you’re gonna die
Or did you long for the next distraction
And all I need know is intellectual intercourse
A soul to dig the hole much deeper
And I have no concept of time other than it is flying
If only I could kill the killer
All I really want is some peace man
a place to find a common ground
And all I really want is a wavelength
All I really want is some comfort
A way to get my hands untied
And all I really want is some justice….
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Venus Morning Star & The Age of Aquarius

Hemispheric View of Venus Centered AT 270 Degrees East Longitude

The planet Venus is in her Morning Star position in the east before sunrise during September. She lends a lovely, harmonious, cosmic energy to our mornings while she is Morning Star.

Queen Venus points the way to Mars and Jupiter appearing in mid-month in predawn twilight. It’s a great month to tune into these planetary, cosmic love energies.

Here’s a very fun observation to make this month: Venus before dawn. Venus is the brightest planet and third-brightest sky object overall, after the sun and moon. When it’s visible, it’s very, very prominent in our sky.

This month, Venus will exhibit its greatest brilliancy as the morning “star” for approximately one week, centered on September 21, 2015.

But don’t wait until then to spot the queen planet Venus. She’ll be in good view all month long, rising before dawn’s first light. Earth Sky Astronomy

The Fifth Dimension’s music was an influence in my childhood, and I remember a holiday pageant at Ballast Point Elementary School in Tampa, Florida, where I sang some of their songs as a member in the choir. This is a fun video from 1969 in celebration of Venus, Love, and the Age of Aquarius. Let the Sun Shine In! Open up your heart and let it shine on in. Why not?

Venus and The Fifth Dimension send me off in love to pump iron at the gym. This Love Warrior is in training and loving it! Tonight is the first Electro-Bhakti Dance in Berkeley. Oh yeah.

The Age of Aquarius, The Fifth Dimension (1969)

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Empathy Calling From Above

Calling From Above – Bassnectar

Empathy, by Lorin Ashton

Love, love, love, love, love
I find you’re something…
Love, love love love love,
I find, I find
Love, love, love, love, love
I find you’re something wonderful
Love, love, love, love, love
I find, I find
I find you’re something…
Pulma Gary Payton, Live in your rotation
all your plexy clad Im stepping back up on your station,
keep style elevating, you feelin the sensation
To a higher zone, you are not alone
i know no perimeters, frequency, no limiters
we multiply integers, we back and forth so limitless
I’m positive, negative combined with infinity
you can grab a vine on a line, this is synergy
Love, love, love
Anything you feel
Love, love, love
I can feel too
anything you feel
I can feel too
To a higher zone (hands high) *repeat
Hands high, hands high (love, love, love, love)
Anything you feel
Hands high, hands high, (love, love, love, love)
I can feel too
Hands high, hands, high, hands high (love, love, love, love)
Anything you feel
Hands high, hands high (love, love, love, love)
I can feel too
Hands high

Empathy, by Bassnectar



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Amazon Womyn

Families & PeopleTo honor all the womyn-born-womyn who love womyn, whether we be lesbian, bisexual, straight allies, celibate, two spirit ….

For the womyn who bleed, birth and menopause in the dominator culture of patriarchal oppression, lies and hatred.

To honor the 40th and final Michigan Women’s Festival, and it’s transformation to a new form in the coming years.

To honor all womyn rising to our full power, glory and potentials.

To the integral blossoming of the Life-Sustaining Society.

To womyn’s sacred art, spirituality, love, wisdom.

To our gorgeous bodies, in all their many forms, that give, work, succor, nurture, heal, inspire and create divine love, joy and bliss.

Amazon Womyn Song!

Amazon Womyn, Fly! 

Amazon Womyn Gonna Rise Again!

We got the FEMALE!

No more hate in my name!

No more greed in my name!

No more death in my name!

No more rape in my name!

No more war in my name!

No more genocide in my name!

Amazon Womyn, Fly! 

Amazon Womyn Rise!

We got the POWER!

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Changes in Artful Flow


I’m thankful for a new friend I met through Facebook networks this week. Meganne Forbes is a Visionary Watercolor Artist in California. She graciously allows me to post her painting (above). I find her work inspiring and very beautiful.

The Artful Life Studies

Next week I begin my second semester of studies at beautiful Merritt College campus in the Oakland Hills. I will continue work in Botanical Drawing with Sheila Tobin-Metcalf, who also heads up the Pollinator Project and Art Club, and in Ceramic Sculpture with Susannah Israel, who is “one of the most fascinating artists working in the field today,” according to the California Conference for the Advancement of Ceramic Art. Also enrolled in a Painting class, plus Cross-Fitness Training to augment swimming/yoga/walking/dancing regimen.

Honu, by Lotus

Honu, by Lotus

That said, I’ve also had struggles in the past day concerning two class cancellations due to low enrollment and disappointment, course & schedule changes around that. Energetic detours aside, I feel super excited about getting back to work in the studio and continuing work on projects, including Pollinator Project and Our Hands series.


“Our Hands” Series – #1: Monarch-Time-Machine Matrix, by Lotus (inside of hand)


“Our Hands” Series – #1: Monarch-Time-Machine Matrix, by Lotus (outside of hand)

Blog Post Schedule Change

Needless to say, my blog posting schedule will be changing with school beginning again. It’s been a productive summer with almost-daily blog posts, and I’m happy about this! I intend to post about once a week through the end of the year, while giving myself permission to change my mind about this as I get into a new schedule flow.


“We Come from the Earth, We Return to the Earth, and In Between We Garden” Plaque, by Lotus

I am also in the process of saying “good bye” to one of the best summers of my life and these lovely, long, lazy days of contemplation and creativity in the warm sun. What a great summer with plenty of personal growth! Oh them changes! I affirm that the Universe works in mysterious ways, and I trust the journey and the Great Mystery.

Change, by Tracy Chapman

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