Thursday, 28 October 2010

The work is the work - Save Our Forests

"...Being discovered is not the work...

the work is the work.

Ever and ever.


The above is a quote from the poem " Advice to The Outsider" from The Dangerous Old Woman by Dr Clarissa Pinkola Estes. Dr Estes is probably best known as the author of the life-changing Women Who Run With The Wolves.

It is a poem asking us to be tenacious "like the blessed yew tree" and "remember your treasure" becuase we never know when it will be needed and "when our gifts will be discovered".

This is about honing skills and being focussed on the work we are called to do, to do it to the best of our ability- not to worry about what anyone else thinks- to be true to our own path.

I came across this poem on facebook and added a comment to the burgeoning number of comments already left by women expressing their thanks for this wisdom:

"The work is the work- thank you- in the UK they are threatening to sell off our national forests to private developers- the fight against this is now part of my work..."

They, the coalition government, want to sell off a large proportion of Forestry Commission land to private investors. Caroline Spelman from DEFRA will be making an announcement outlining the exact nature of these plans shortly. Apparently there will be no sell-off in Wales or Scotland- so it's us English who stand to lose...

After the stories in the press at the weekend there is now a 20,000 signature and counting petition (which you can sign here)an ever-growing group on facebook (which you can join here) and now...silence, while people wait and think of how best to protest and campaign against this.

I am still unable to articulate properly how deeply I feel about this- almost tongue-tied. IT CANNOT BE ALLOWED TO HAPPEN. For so many reasons, including most importantly the environmental repercussions.This is OUR forest to keep. NOT theirs to sell. How dare they?!

This is about our natural habitat, our natural heritage, our freedom to roam, our future generation's right to have all of this...there are other deeper reasons which I will attempt to write about when I am able to...but anyone who knows about the deep green woods, who cares about dreams, who understands myths, who thinks about a nation's psyche...its freedom...its soul will wonder what will happen if our trees are cut down, the land is turned over for property courses...centre parc style holiday resorts...

"The work is the work"

My work is to be Sam's mum, finish my degree, keep writing and now to do something to stop our ancient forests from being sold off.

A quote from Women Who Run With The Wolves:

"There is much afoot at any given time that can make a shambles of spirit and soul by attempting to destroy intent, or by pressuring one to forget the important questions: Questions such as, not only what are the pragmatics of a situation, but also "where is the soul in this matter?" One proceeds in life, gains ground, reverses injustice, and stands against the winds, through strength of spirit."

Standing against the winds like that old yew tree...full of treasure.


Thursday, 21 October 2010

Threads for weaving

Persuading you to put on trousers this morning, even though you didn't really believe "surfers wear them at this time of the year too, y'know..."

Day 4 of feeling so poorly I can't do anything except tap and click on my lap top and read.

So thankful my Dad has been around to help with Sam.

Starting to feel inspired to write now that my brain has had a chance to rest and think because the whirling dervish who normally transports it has had final warning from her body that she needs to rest and get well.

Still buzzing.

Furious at the Comprehensive spending review and feeling more and more lucky instead of desperate about my current situation, and trying not to fear the future.

Disappointed that I am not performing poetry tonight as planned.

Needing some community, as ever.

Wondering if I can still plant bulbs in the front garden now there has been a thick frost?

Loving the Plum Village web site : "Breathe, you are online"

Looking for peace.

Striving to be a good mum.

Living in the moment and practising mindfulness.

Thinking about the Tor.

Wishing I was better with words.

Leaving the bags at the gate and running up the hill feeling free.

The veil is thin...Let Go

Love, Love, Love xxx

Wednesday, 6 October 2010

Are You Afraid of Virginia Woolf?

Yesterday I spent the afternoon in Richmond. I have been reading Virginia Woolf's a Sketch of the Past, from the book Moments of Being, a collection of her auobiographical writings. This is the second time I have tried to read Woolf, and as it is one of the set texts for a module I'm studying as part of my degree, I knew this time I would have to persevere. But until the last few days I have been looking at it as a mountain to climb- one that I was hopeful of appreciating the view, once I reached the top.

I've just drafted a review of this piece of writing, which does not come near to doing it justice. I never got 'it' before, with Virginia Woolf, never watched that film with Nicole Kidman, gave up reading Mrs Dalloway after three attempts. Decided it wasn't for me.

I will find the tiniest reason to go to Richmond as it is. I lived there for several years as a child and it is overlaid with memories which stretch right up to last week when I had a stroll along the river and visited Ham House gardens for the first time in over 30 years.

My reason for going yesterday was ostensibly to sit and read Woolf 'in situ'. Just an excuse really but I've known for ages that she started the Hogarth Press there with her husband Leonard, where TS Eliot's The Wasteland was first published. She lived there from 1915 to 1924. So I went and stood outside Hogarth House and tried to imagine it without the brutalist architecture nearby, and to tried to guess which route Woolf would have favoured to get to the river or the Green.

Her writing, once you get into the clause-ridden and heavily punctuated sentences (which become quite addictive to read after a while) is astonishing in its clarity and depth. The intensity with which she evokes her childhood in all its facets is unlike anything I've encountered before. Powerful stuff and deeply moving. I will definitely read more.

Worth the climb.

Tuesday, 5 October 2010

Writer's Block?

I'm not sure why I haven't been writing. I have been extraordinarily busy but that hasn't stopped me before. I've been thinking about writing a lot but not doing it.
I'm not short of ideas - quite the opposite. The two months since my last post have been crazy - full of new experiences, weekends away, celebrations and fun. Maybe I have been overwhelmed with it all. Maybe that is the answer.
I have been trying to get back to my daily practise of writing poetry and some kind of prose, jotting ideas down in my notebooks, and scrawling on anything resembling paper when inspiration strikes.
The final year of my degree has begun, and after the election in May, I am feeling very keenly that I have to make it count. Things are going to get very tough over the next few years, especially for single parents. My support network is limited and I am still 'homeless-at-home', living with my Dad. I have a renewed awareness of how lucky I am to have his support.
Writing is the way. I am convinced of it. How much blogging I am going to do this year is a mystery. But the block, if there was one, has gone. I am back and I am writing.

Love xxx