Friday, April 04, 2008


We wandered over the woods trail through quiet inner landscapes and as usual, I saw symbols everywhere. To clarify, litter is never just a scrap of paper thrown carelessly on the pavement to me. No, I am convinced the bold print: FREE!!! is telling me something about my life...The penny (heads up, of course) on the sidewalk must mean luck and so I'll pocket it eagerly. I search through clover visiting the park with the children, because finding a tender four-leaved shoot will tell me I'm on the right path. Passing the newspaper and cigarette shop on Main Street, I stop dead in my tracks at the hastily hand-scrawled, "Mind the Steps", because I am in process right now and I *do* need to pay attention to each and every step. I need to "mind" them. Yes, how did they know?

Rounding a bend and running into this tree, I crouched down and touched the wounded recesses of the trunk, my heart a fist in my throat. This was a "birthing tree"...the hidden inner life crowning painfully through the jagged-edged bark. I took one photo, then another, thinking about my own rebirth of late...I am reading the work of this fascinating thinker and one quote in particular gets at the center of things for me:

"Due to having made karma, rebirth consciousness arises. But we need not think of rebirth only in a future life. We are in actual fact reborn every moment with new thoughts and feelings, and we bring with us the karma that we made in past moments. If we were angry a moment ago, we are not going to feel good immediately. If we were loving a minute ago, we would be feeling fine now. Thus we live from moment to moment with the results of our karma. Every morning, particularly, can be seen as a rebirth. The day is young, we are full of energy, and have a whole day ahead of us. Every moment we get older and are tired enough in the evening to fall asleep and die a small death. All we can do then is toss and turn in bed, and our mind is dreamy and foggy. Every day can be regarded as a whole lifespan, since we can only live one day at a time; the past is gone and the future may or may not come; only this rebirth, this day, this moment, is important."
~Ayya Khema~

I don't know if I hold karma in a literal sense in my own beliefs--but, these words resonate for me...undeniably so. If each day is a new life, I am trying to live each one as fully as I can without worrying quite as much about what tomorrow--my next life--will bring, or what the last one I led--yesterday's--already has.

What I do know:
***today it is spring and I am writing my second book and sending the first one out to the agents I was {kindly} referred to (after my discussion with the first one led to the conclusion, "beautiful writing...fascinating have a gift and someone will take this on--emphasis his--but I'm looking for the next big commercial blockbuster and this is just too literary for me. Here are some names and tell them I sent you." (sigh, insert stiff upper lip here)
***I bought new notebooks for the writing still to be completed on the second manuscript--notebooks like those I was sure my characters would choose to write in. I bought myself a sari-patterned hand-mirror (a nod to a significant trait of the daughter in the book) and a collection of patron saint jar candles--just like these (which matter immensely to my mother character--though no more can be revealed just yet).
***The magnolia tree is headed into full-blossom and I've actually been able to get started on some garden work.
***Baseball season has opened up, with all that this entails.
***My words are being so channeled into the fiction that I am feeling quiet otherwise. Moved by the stark layout and speed of this web service and her amazing inspirations, I've started what I consider to be a visual scrapbook of my days. This doesn't mean I won't still be here sharing my words-words-words, it just provides me a different (and more frequent) way of sharing the view from where I'm standing. No rules--no expectations about what I'll put up over there--just a blank canvas/notebook page, which feels in some ways like overdue spring cleaning.

Another opportunity for rebirth...


Blogger Granny Smith said...

An amazing photo and a feast of thought in the accompanying prose. I hope you find an agent and a publisher who appreciate your gifts as author.

Best wishes

3:40 PM  
Blogger dailypanic said...

Tree photos never bore me. Cool pic.
Best of luck with your writing!

4:54 PM  
Blogger paisley said...

i haven't seen you name around lately,, so it was good to know it is because you are on a self fulfilling path... i really hope the book gets gobbled right up!!

10:47 PM  
Blogger GreenishLady said...

I read this post yesterday, and must have drifted off following your links and forgotten to come back and say how much I'd enjoyed it! I just loved your new way of reading "ordinary" words. ... "Mind the steps" Yes.

5:58 AM  
Blogger tumblewords said...

An absolutely astounding photo and accompanying prose! Good luck to you!

1:59 PM  
Blogger Left-handed Trees... said...

granny smith: thank you for the kind wishes!

dailypanic: tree photos never bore me either...i love them.

paisley: thanks for looking out for has been a very unusual span of months!

greenishlady: glad you enjoyed the links...minding the steps is right!

tumblewords: thank you so much for the good luck--i'll take it!!! ;)


11:53 AM  
Blogger Amber said...

Dude. THAT is a vagina. LOL! How fabulous! Talk about a sign. How about the message to own your woman self, and female power. ROOOAAARR!


8:24 PM  
Blogger daisies said...

there is a strength and resolve in your words that make my heart smile, thinking of you, much love, xo

4:18 PM  
Blogger Left-handed Trees... said...

amber: that's what i thought when i saw it! a birthing tree, right?

daisies: thank you for seeing strength in me...


12:41 PM  
Blogger January said...

I'm sure your work will find the right home, it just takes time.
Good luck with your writing, and everything.

2:04 PM  
Blogger kristen said...

susannah has been super inspiring to me too. i love this tumblr site - i've been trying to figure out how to incorporate this for myself as well.

11:47 AM  

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