knives and fire

KNIVES AND FIRE 2 (pic from wikimedia commons)when we met
familiar pull
your thick scent

your thick scent
gasoline and grease
grown man’s sweat

grown man’s sweat
uncovered longings
to have more

to have more
unrequited love
from afar

from afar
watched your love for her
knives and fire

knives and fire
from what could have been
when we met

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This poem is a haiku cascade made with verses of small (3-5-3) haiku poems. It was inspired by the Haiku Circus word prompt “smell”.

haikucircusbadge* * * * * * *

Thanks for reading.

Alice

divinations

Last evening, I attended a gathering at a local shop which serves the metaphysical community. There, one may browse among a range of books on various spiritualities and alternative healing arts, buy from an array of oracle cards or begin a personalized collection of pebbles to use in energy and healing work.

Among the shop’s wares may also be found colored candles, silver rings, pendants, pendulums, dream catchers, figurines, essential oils, fairy dust bottles, greeting cards and hand-carved wooden wands. There are also racks of clothing which tend toward flowing styles, lace and the unusual.

In a side room of this shop, one may sit on a red velvet chair across a small table from a local specialist and have a reading. One may have a photograph taken which reveals the colors and meanings of one’s aura. Healers versed in a number of approaches are available for consultation. Appointments may be made but walk-ins are welcome.

This shop also holds evening meetings on a variety of topics that range from a monthly get-together on extra-terrestrial influences and a spiritual weight management group to classes on Tarot reading and chakra balancing yoga.

The meeting I attended last night was a regular one lead by the shop owner. Its focus is to help develop personal intuition.

A GIANT PENDULUM (wikimedia commons)Last night, we suspended pendulums above charts to find direction and advice in response to our questions. We practiced getting answers to one another’s questions in addition to our own.

I had fun. I received intriguing answers to my question.

On a moment-by-moment and day-to-day basis, I usually know what to do next. Over the years, I’ve cultivated life habits that help simplify choices. I get up in the dark and put out bread to rise while I write. After the sun comes up, I do art and other things that require more light. When I get tired of sitting and working, I go for a walk.

Predictable structure and routine responses help keep new life decisions to a minimum. There’s less want of intuitive interventions in a life where one always plants in the spring and harvests in the fall and when you split and stack firewood during the dry summer and then burn it when it’s cold outside.

But in these fast-changing modern times, decisions are not so straight-forward. Habitual responses may. Intuitive approaches to decision-making can help guide a more fluid existence.

I enjoyed last night’s pendulum approach to releasing spontaneous and intuitive intelligence from the bonds of habitual thought patterns. Complex and multi-layered divination is possible with a pendulum in the hands of an experienced practitioner. But anyone can use a home-made pendulum to assist in decision-making.

These are some basics. One can use a carved stone plumb suspended from a silver chain or a pendant necklace as a pendulum. But a paperclip dangling from the end of any string will also work.

Hold your pendulum suspended from a loose wrist and begin by calibrating. Ask to be shown “yes”. Whatever direction it swings is “yes”. Then ask to be shown “no” to determine the direction of “no”. After this, ask a series of simple questions which you know the answers for. “Is my name Alice?” is one I used last night. Once your pendulum is calibrated, you can move on to other questions.

This simple method of using a pendulum for yes/no divination reminds me of a decision-making technique I’ve used for years to help me get past stuck points. I flip a coin. First I ask a heads-is-yes-and-tails-is-no question. Then I flip the coin.

There’s a crucial part of using a coin flip. I pause to relax before viewing which side landed up. And, while I pause and relax, I pay attention to my feelings. Most important of all, I don’t simply do what the coin says. Rather, I notice how I feel when I get my answer. If I have an impulse to toss the coin again to try to get a different answer, I don’t bother. I simply do the opposite of what the coin said. I follow my sense of relief, however small, in response to the outcome of the toss.

DUDE FLIPPING A COIN (wikimedia commons)Taking the time to flip a coin, relax and tune into my intuitive and feeling self has given me much useful guidance over the years.

Using a pendulum is a bit more elegant way than flipping a coin to focus and open channels to self-discovery. It may allow one to relax into intuitive frameworks and discover un-thought avenues to explore.

Ask questions of a pendulum or a coin. Then listen to how the heart feels about the answers. This is one method to focus and quiet the chattering monkey mind. It may allow one to be more open to direction and messages which arise from the heart.

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Thanks for reading.

Alice

PS: If you haven’t yet discovered the art (photo collage etc) and poetry of KENNETH BRAUCHLER (aka “KA Bryce” and “A Mirror Obscura”), wander over when you have time to get lost in a deep pool of the most gripping work being created today. He is a fountain pouring out mystery. I am especially drawn to his images.”The Moon” is one of his Tarot.

https://kabryce.wordpress.com/

 

and yet the mockingbird sings

raspy-edged ocean water
wells from the heart to be caught
in the throat webs of string bind
swollen too thick to call out

no one will come anyway
drowning in this hopeless cave
with eyes wide open nothing
can be done to help at all

and yet the mockingbird sings
butter dawn turns silver-blue
calla lilies beg plucking
  with cream throats held wide open

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Thanks for reading.

Alice

PS: This is the link to picture on wikimedia commons

we together here

640px-Rose_and_Honey_Beewe together here
spring sun warm hands and soft lips
cherry blossom sky

cherry blossom sky
lazy origami clouds
rose petals unfold

rose petals unfold
embrace nuzzling honey bee
soft buzzes tickle

soft buzzes tickle
fountains of laughter and sighs
we together here

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This is a haiku cascade poem. It was written in response to the Haiku Horizons word prompt “gift”.

THIS IS THE LINK TO HAIKU HORIZONS WORD PROMPT.* * * * * * *

Thanks for reading.

Alice

it’s not déjà vu

320px-Champagne_Chauvet-1923It’s not déjà vu if it’s all happened before. Slow-motion train wrecks are still train wrecks. Soft landings are a myth airline passengers comfort themselves with. Those who come late to a party are still at the party at closing time. It doesn’t take a psychic to predict the ending when watching a re-run.

I’ve stopped looking for a house to buy where I live. I’ve mostly stopped scrolling through house-shopping websites. So long as people are listing houses in my neighborhood for impossible-dream prices and there are still greater fools out there with borrowing capacity to buy them, what’s the point?

The last crumbs of nothing are snapped up by investment groups of local realtors to be flipped. Everyone I’ve talked is clicking their heels and shouting “always up” very loud with their eyes closed.

Through my former profession, I’ve developed a knack for communicating with those who live in alternate realities. But I’ve made it a habit not to go live there with them.

Those up to their elbows in pie, grabbing for cherries, become quite irritable when I point out the housing market bubble. Everyone in the Land of Oz wears green-colored glasses. I can either grab a pair and join the rave or go away.

458px-Emerald_City_of_Oz_coverBut I’ve never developed a stomach for the fizz of gambling among a folie à ten-thousand. So I wandered off to consider other life options at a safer distance. If my husband hadn’t landed this impossible job of his he loves so much, we’d be gone from this house-of-cards by now.

Last night, on impulse, I strolled through a real estate shopping web site. I saw that there are many more homes for sale in the area than there have been. Many have been languishing on the market for months.

When we first moved here, there was only one house listed for $300,000 in the county. There was nothing cheaper. And this one offering had been a homeless camp and was uninhabitable. From time to time, there’s a been a cabin in the woods behind town for under a half-million. But the rest of the houses offered for sale have been much more expensive. These have moved quickly into investment portfolios. Our neighborhood is sprinkled with expensive homes where no one lives. But last night I found several cabins in the woods listed for $250,000.

Last spring, we’d looked at an “as-is” first floor condo nearby for $315,000. We were told to hurry and make our best offer as the agent was collecting offers to consider. But we walked away after discovering financial management issues in the condo association. Last night I found its twin condo has gone pending after two months for $200,000.

The inventory of over-priced house trailers in parks which are now without rent control (up to $2500 a month) are accumulating.

The real estate market is still quite over-valued but free fall is well in progress.

I watched this whole greed-n-bust cycle play out in Seaside Oregon between 2006 and 2012. Back in 2006, I wanted a bigger home there. But people had become infected with this same old greed insanity. In a small town with nothing beyond seasonal tourism to support its economy, a real estate bubble blossomed, turned evil and swallowed the town.

Overnight, everyone became a realtor. Every house and apartment became a quintessential beach house with upside potential and a peak of the ocean from the toilet or the roof. Everyone who could, booted out their renters and made their complexes into expensive condos with granite counter tops and stainless steel appliances.

Heavy equipment roared on the hills behind town. Those bulldozers were carving out high-end subdivisions for mythical rich high-tech workers from across the mountains who were all supposed to want a dear little beach cottage to retire to. Rivers, their watersheds thus destroyed, flooded roads and lower-lying homes with debris during storms.

This greed insanity turned ordinary housing for ordinary working folks into an impossibility. There was a protest in the downtown streets by locals who couldn’t find affordable housing.

Anyone who could, moved away. The local newspaper lost its editor because she got the boot from her apartment and couldn’t find housing. Service workers and their families lived doubled up, in garages, in sheds and in trailers camps in flood hazard areas.

Back then, when we went house shopping, we found nothing for under $300,000. And this was for a tiny soft-floored shack without a foundation in a wetland that had been a drug camp.

In the end, that bubble burst. Housing prices went into free-fall and hit with a splat. As the crash unfolded over a few years, those new-hatched realtors became less effervescent and chummy. They became more irritable as well. There were realtors and “cash investors” who were caught holding properties they’d intended for one more flip.

The neighborhoods for the rich carved into the hills behind town haven’t sold. Vacant lots are grown thick with new alder. Many condo-ized and lip-sticked apartments also didn’t sell to the intended chumps. Some were bought up by the county and converted into affordable rental housing.

TRAINWRECKAnd our little beach house might be worth a quarter of its supposed value at the peak of the insanity. After some work. On a sunny day. But probably not.

I’m watching a re-run in my current beach town. People here are sure that there’s an endless supply of rich high-tech workers just over the hill who all long for a dear little beach cottage to retire to. Local service-workers are moving away or living doubled-up in garages and sheds and campers. Everyone has become a realtor and realtors have been playing investor. They’re irritable.

I know how this all comes out. We are in free-fall here, kids. I just don’t know how fast it will go, when we’ll hear the splat or if I’ll even want to live here by then.

* * * * * * *

Thanks for reading.

Alice

dust particles

Ahead and behind lays an infinity of time as dust particles. I feel happy and lucky. But I’m also filled with the ache of longing. My lifetime career has been clipped short. Beyond the daily maintenance chores of home and hearth, I’m bereft of goal and purpose. There is emptiness.

And this is good.

I’m fortunate to have the luxury to spend my days with walks and spiritual meanderings, writing and artistic creation, the making of vegetable soup and the baking of bread. But, in a culture patched together out of profit margins and leverage, cars and highways, text messages and aps, grabbing and going, my efforts have little value. I’m lost at the bottom of this mud puddle of materialism.

This is good.

I have no end-users, no consumers, no customer base and no paid advertisers. Neither have I financial conflicts of interest to twist and distort, deafen and blind, corrupt and poison my wanderings. No one cares what I do or when I do it. There are no secrets to conceal.

This is good.

Freedom comes when locus of control is found inside rather than outside. Freedom comes when desires for victories and things are replaced with longing. I’ve become a river of longing that flows within a silent ocean of emptiness.

This is good.

Longing keeps my weeping heart open wide. I’m a fetus who awaits birth, an adolescent growing forward into an unknowable future and, in the same moment, my life-clock plays out its last few ticks. I gaze upon impenetrable darkness. Ahead and behind lays an infinity of time as dust particles.

This is good.

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Thanks for reading.

Alice

jim and betty were tired

1 JIM AND BETTY WERE TIRED2 OF PAYING RENT3 THEY WANTED A HOME4 A LITTLE LOVE NEST5 WITH ROSES6 AND ROOM FOR A GARDEN7 BUT PRICES WERE SO HIGH8 THEY DECIDED TO WAIT* * * * * * *

JIM # 24

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Thanks for reading.

Alice

PS: To read more Jim Comics, go to my “HOME” page and click on the “COMIC” tab. If you’d like to read them in order, scroll back in time till you reach the beginning. The prequel is “When Nola Left Betty”.