Pustules and playfulness- the artist’s dilemma


Tea Bowl (Chawan) # 21 in a series. November 2019, Whidbey Island Pottery is a craft that never ceases to humble one.  Humility - the word - comes from “humus” or “earth.” Digging clay, processing it into readiness for the potter’s wheel and then spinning it - twirling it -...

Living life in the present moment


the ferry to Friday Harbor on San Juan Island You are going to die. In Bhutan they say that contemplating death five times a day brings happiness.  When I was told about this by a friend this week, I was unconvinced.  It sounds macabre.  It sounds depressing.  It sounds morose. ...

mistakes


Sometimes things just do not turn out the way we had planned, or even dared to hope. The often-quoted phrase “Compare and despair.” is a valuable reminder to me that when I compare myself and my life to others, despair is usually the only result.  Needless suffering.  The thought-version of...

Warmth


Kai-the-dog and I have turned off our TV and stored it. The evening news is too hard to hear and I can get what I need from NPR on the way to work. Now, the light in our home is no longer blue, it is orange, gentle, soft. Kai-the-dog likes...

Finding


These days, as I age and slow down a bit, I am finding myself less and less inclined to rush past precious things in search of many or impressive or self-anesthetizing things.  I am letting go of things like board membership, speaking engagements, impressive job titles and things like …well...

Beauty’s becoming – a meditation on gain and loss


Whidbey Island Late-summer Tomatoes Our culture confuses beauty and glamor. They are different. Glamor sells, whereas beauty inspires.  Britney Spears may sell but Vanessa Redgrave inspires. Glamor is flawless whereas beauty can be centered in the very flaws of a thing, of a person, of a situation, of a life....

The shell and the red balloon


Shahnit's Shell When I moved to an island in the Salish Sea, a friend gave me some shells he had found on a beach one day.  We agreed that I would spend some time with them and, in time, find some shells and agate stones here on this island, and...

legacy


Totem Poles near my home on the edge of the Salish Sea We humans like to leave a mark behind which says :”I was here.” We wonder what will be left behind when we die?  Was it good people raised, big churches built, good sermons written, good art in homes...

Tenacity and Gratitude


The meditation loft over the study at Edgecliff House on Whidbey Island Way up above my study is a meditation loft. There are pillows and an electric tea kettle.  A hexagonal window looks out to the ocean off the cliff on which I live and so my pillow faces out...

Letting Go


NanNan's Letter Folder, later embossed with my name at ordination. I clutter my home with love.  Well, things really.  But they are icons of love – hard to let go of and yet...it is time to simplify.  It is time “to small” my life.  Small should be a verb. These...