Lizards in the Leaves

Rustlings in the green....imagination, art, whimsy

Dec 6, 2011

Miscellany: WordFest, First Friday, Lily at the Window

Just a quick check-in to say the weekend creative writing symposium, WordFest, went splendidly. I had a wonderful time. It was hard for me to agree to lead a workshop for this event and I'm very glad I did.

You might wonder what was hard since I've written before about doing writing workshops. I guess it was the venue. My other experiences were working with The Maple Center for Integrative Health and for ArtReach. At the former, the context was sharing the ways writing helps when struggling with loss and grief. At the latter, it was informal - me and a bunch of teenagers usually. (And adults with teenage souls!)

At WordFest, I was offering a workshop for writers. Alongside academics with degrees and much more experience in classroom and workshop presentation and being published.  Scary. Oh yes.  But my workshop went well and the other presenters were warm and welcoming and friendly. So it was a good experience all 'round.

For the last couple of years, I've been trying to accept challenges that come my way. Even though it's scary, I'm ALWAYS glad I accepted. I learn and grow through each one.

At the same time, my fiber work was being displayed in two venues a couple of blocks away.  

Display at The Passion Window, my 2010 Freeform Guild Challenge shawl, felted vessels, textile necklaces & pins

Display at RiverWools, fingerless mitts, Florabelle hats, cotton scarves

...presided over by Birdwoman's Council Shawl.

John Salamone, my friend & weaving mentor, who moves very, very fast in order to do all that he does: weave magnificient pieces, create delightful window displays, and commit random acts of extreme kindness.

And now that  this busy weekend is  all over, now that I have NO commitments, I am ready to begin my annual Winter Retreat, something I started two years ago. It's 3  whole months when I accept no great responsibilities, take time for my spirit, my writing and art, tend my grief issues, and set my course for the rest of the year that follows. 

This year is especially important because of the turning sixty thing. I'm in liminal space right now,  a threshold before me. I feel it in my bones and soul. I need to honor this feeling, explore it and see where it leads me.

This picture of Lily astonished me when I saw it - the way the light just glowed, blue-violet,  from outside as this short day darkened.  This is the first time I have seen Lily, standing on this chair, peering outside.

This picture is particularly poignant as the mini-blinds were broken a dozen years ago, by Clover when she first arrived. And engraved in my heart is the  image of her sweet little face peering out at me whenever I was outside, whenever I arrived home.

Clover loved looking out there, and it seemed silly to replace the blinds as I suspected she'd just break them again. When she died, I remember thinking I might go ahead and get new ones.

I'm glad I didn't replace them. 




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