Friday, July 31, 2009

Crow Meditations

Today, after rising out of bed a little late (acceptable considering I’ve been quite tired lately and today was my day off), I tripped and fell face down on the floor as soon as I got up. Which to me seemed like a bad start to the day. Generally I find sleeping in to be terribly depressing. It doesn’t make sense, but if I wake up and it’s late, I am so upset that I have missed part of the day that I cannot find the strength to get out of bed, I just lie in despair and waste more of the day away. This summer I haven’t been sleeping in as late, due in part to the noise caused by having a three year old in the house, and also due to the fact that my concepts of time have changed slightly, as tiredness seems to settle in during the earlier hours of the evening, and my concept of what is late is shifted forward a bit.

It’s hard to imagine that one of the most beautiful hiking trails in the world can begin to seem tedious, but after hiking the same trail everyday it isn’t quite as exciting anymore. Not that I have lost my appreciation for it, because I am still just as enthusiastic as ever about the beauty of the trail and still find the inspiration to go there often. I guess my appreciation has just shifted over to a more softer enthusiasm, enjoying it not as something new but something that has become a bit older and weathered in my experience.

Today I was excited once again to hike a section of the trail that I had not done for a couple weeks. I was happy to get out and get some excersize and fresh air, and leisurely made my way over to the beach, picking thimbleberries all the way. I sat down on a driftwood log, looking out on the fresh ocean and still water separated by dark weathered rocks. I closed my eyes and sat still, clearing my mind and reaching a peaceful state but not trying to block thoughts from occurring. I opened my eyes every once in a while, just to survey my surroundings and appreciate the visual beauty that comes with the peaceful sounds and touch of ocean air.

I saw a crow, happily searching the ground for food and hopping about. It seemed perfectly content in what it was doing, enjoying this simple act that is nothing more than ordinary and everyday. This came across as a sort of epiphany to give me perspective on how I have been feeling about my life lately. I’ve felt at times throughout the summer that I’m not doing much with my life right now and aren’t accomplishing anything, which is not only a harsh judgement to give myself considering it is summer and I’m going back to school in the fall, but I also know that it isn’t completely true. I suppose a slower pace just takes some getting used to. I have always felt that people can do incredible things, and hope to do amazing things in my life. Not necessarily fame or hero worthy, but things that are fulfilling, inspiring, and leave a positive impact.

I’ve always admired animals for their simplicity. Birds are happiest just being birds, flying around and being free. Animals love to run, to just live out their lives in their natural habitat. I’ve seen expressions of pure glee on creatures of all sorts just doing what they know best, from galloping up a hill, splashing in a puddle, frolicking in the meadow, animals just need to be left to their own devices and they will be happy. Not to say that I think all animals of any one species are all the same, because that couldn’t be further from the truth. Individual animals still express differences and individuality, but not in the sense of being unhappy with who they are. Beyond basic means of survival, there are no responsibilities to fulfill, no competition for money, fame or success, and no constant striving for more. Animals know how to just be.

Although I have always been aware of this, seeing the crow, and another that flew over to join it, served as a quiet reminder. It made me think of my own position right now, and how a quiet and peaceful existence isn’t necessarily a bad thing. Although I don’t think people should give up ambition for consistency, I do think that most people are doing some admirable. I admire grandparents, parents, friends, anyone who shares an enthusiasm for life and for others. People’s kindness and compassion for others is the greatest inspiration I know.

And sometimes an elusive crow, just simply being and minding its own business, can be a peaceful reminder that not everything in life has to be big.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Postcards from a faraway place (located within my lateral orbitofrontal cortex)

Watercolour, marker, calligraphy pen, and india ink on watercolour paper.

Watercolour and india ink on watercolour paper.

Watercolour, acrylic, and metallic pigmented ink on watercolour paper.

Watercolour and marker on watercolour paper.

Watercolour, calligraphy ink, and india ink on watercolour paper.

Watercolour on watercolour paper.

Ink on paper. This is the only one that isn't a postcard, the rest will possibly someday travel in the mail to reach some special people.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

less than ideal

Soup served at a less than ideal temperature
Flavour barely peeking through
It has the potential to be so much better
But it’s not really worth the effort right now
So this will just have to do

Each small luxury
Comes along with a question
Am I really worth it?
Should I even bother?

When staying alive is your only goal
You start to redefine what being alive
Actually means

If staying alive is your only goal
You have already failed

If you only care to be alive
Nothing more
Than you only care to exist
But really, you aren’t alive at all
Bordering on the thin line of existence
Balance staggaring, weaving in and out
Of the realm of being real

If you don’t exist to anyone but yourself
And you begin to have your doubts too
Then who really knows?
What you are
Is a mystery not kept to yourself

Getting off the couch
Deciding to heat the soup up
For an extra 30 seconds in the microwave
Brings the flavours out more
Warms the soul
Balances the line just a little bit

Maybe I should aim for slightly more
Than mere existence
I should find out
What it actually means
To be alive

Sharp & Sweet

Licking honey off a sharpend knife
This lucrative tongue won’t stop
For the pain,
Mixed with sweetness
Is tolerable for the moment
Surely will be regretted later
Pain is sharper than memory


Lights softly twinkle
From a far away place
Somewhere someone is dreaming
Of another’s sweet embrace

A pulsating murmer
Echoing from afar
Is consistent, barely audible
A bumble of noise
To prove that beyond this
There is something more

Stillness is all around
Such a steady calm
Is almost discerning
Even breath is an event

I just discovered another sign
But it doesn’t really mean anything
For once I’ll say its just a coincidence
And I know that someone
Has left a borrowed trail to unravel.

Oh how we strive to impress

This toilet paper is oh-so-soft
Like a silken feather of the highest quality
Momentarily used to wipe away excrement

And this soap smells heavenly
Overpowering perfumes really do impress
As they are washed down the drain

You must be really well-to-do,
With your royal bathroom
Of temporary luxuries
Soon to be forgotten
Pollution to remain

Space Voyage

Floating endlessly through space
Calm as a smooth glass lake
Tranquility embracing the air around you.
Stars pass by like a carpet unravelling
Great secrets of the unknown.
Each one passes as a blur
A story told quickly,
Its impact to last forever.

Laser beams at rest
There is no fighting needed
Nor anything to fight
The night sky is yours for the taking
Eyes open wide, taking in as much as is within sight
There is always more, expanding
Larger than this mind can fathom.

Eventually we must land,
But this space is alluring
You can never see it all,
So much to never be discovered
Yet its peaceful effect
Leaves me content.