It’s already the end of summer! I’ve had a wonderful summer enjoying more time in the country, soaking up the sun and the woods and enjoying the water. Even when I’m mindful and trying to be present, time still speeds by, and it’s hard to keep up with life transitions.
In the past week, we’ve also dropped Gabriel off at college. And Simone, who’s about to start high school next week, just celebrated her 15th birthday!
Lots of changes!
I’ve been in a reflective mode.
Here’s a short poem from my forthcoming book, The High Shelf, about just that:
Any moment, the red door.
Then, the leaves,
the many leaves, all yellow now,
they are so thin, I think I can feel them
ready to fall.
One breeze, and you:
or standing, alone—
What, what do we not become?
Though it’s not quite time for the leaves to fall, it is a time of transition. I’m standing in a space of wonder, letting time wash over me, looking back and also looking forward.
We are individually and collectively in a time of great change. How do we meet that change? What is our role in it?
As the climate crisis worsens without appropriate response and our nation tips into dangerous incivility and injustice, what is the role of our own voices? How do we stay centered, even amidst rapid change—both negative and positive? How do we use our voices and make art in the face of it all?
I’ve been reading two books about the dangers of scarcity and fear itself: Scarcity: Why Having Too Little Means So Much and Jumping at Shadows: The Triumph of Fear and the End of the American Dream When we experience scarcity, the first book documents, our body and brain react: we’re less able to make good decisions; our brain is less able to perform basic tasks; we have poor judgment. The second book explores how when we experience fear, even irrational, unwarranted fear, we also make poor judgments and often become dangerous to others—and even ourselves.
These books confirm what I’ve learned from teachers like Thich Nhat Hanh—that when we stay centered and connected to ourselves and to our breath, when we learn to combat fear itself, we become better—not less— able to deal with crises. If we can live from a place of enoughness and generosity, then we become better activists. If we can nourish ourselves, we can better nourish others.
So in these last days of summer, I hope you do what you can to nourish yourself and to support a more just, sustainable, loving world.
Perhaps, it’s a time for some extra rest, so essential for any forward movement. Here’s a blog post I wrote last year about the importance of rest.
Perhaps it’s a time for loving engagement–get involved with local activist groups. Reach out to help a friend or neighbor. Support a political candidate. Use your voice to advocate for change and show a different way.
This fall, I’ll be offering some programs to help you nourish and strengthen yourself and step into whatever your next (writing) chapter may be.
On Friday, September 13th, I’ll be offering a FREE a LIVE, ONLINE meditation & writing session. There will also be time for questions & answers. Come nourish your creative voice in community and get some free coaching from me. Mark your calendar now! The sign up for this free event is coming soon.
My memoir and essay workshop for women from 12:30-2:30 on Mondays in North Cambridge has two spaces left. Come engage with a supportive community of women writers. We explore both craft and process. The small class size allows for lots of attention to individual projects, and the class is open to writers of all levels.
My poetry workshop Monday mornings is now full
Reach out to me with any questions or comments, and as always, please share with friends.