Be Present

be present – 10″ x 10″ x 1″ – acrylic/mixed media on wood panel
{from the Mantras & Meditations series – available for purchase in my etsy shop}

To the Moon

Art thou pale for weariness

Of climbing Heaven, and gazing on the earth,

Wandering companionless

Among the stars that have a different birth,–

And ever changing, like a joyless eye

That finds no object worth its constancy?


Percy Bysshe Shelley (1792 – 1822)


Climbing, climbing, always wanting more, or something just beyond reach… living for the future… believing in “if only”… not stopping to breathe and see and touch and understand that everything in this moment is perfect and as it should be…




You can

die for it-

an idea,

or the world. People

have done so,



their small bodies be bound

to the stake,


an unforgettable

fury of light. But

this morning,

climbing the familiar hills

in the familiar

fabric of dawn, I thought

of China,

and India

and Europe, and I thought

how the sun


for everyone just

so joyfully

as it rises

under the lashes

of my own eyes, and I thought

I am so many!

What is my name?

What is the name

of the deep breath I would take

over and over

for all of us? Call it

whatever you want, it is

happiness, it is another one

of the ways to enter


– Mary Oliver (1935 – )

Winter Blossoms


blossom – 9″ x 12″ x 1″ – acrylic – mixed media on wood panel
{from the Mantras & Meditations series – available for purchase in my etsy shop}


We all have contained within us seeds of beauty, strength, compassion, understanding, creativity, love…  seeds that must be nurtured in order to blossom.  The trick is to discover the right environment within which to grow.  It’s not necessarily a place, but more a state of mind.

What does it take to get it just right?  Well, for me it all starts with honesty and self-acceptance; knowing that if I stay true to who I am, that is more than enough.


The Jewel

There is this cave

In the air behind my body

That nobody is going to touch:

A cloister, a silence

Closing around a blossom of fire.

When I stand upright in the wind,

My bones turn to dark emeralds.

James Wright (1927 – 1980)

Listen and Reach


listen – 10″ x 10″ x 1″ – acrylic – mixed media on wood panel
{from the Mantras & Meditations series – available for purchase in my etsy shop}


I have been thinking a lot lately about what’s most important to me and where I want to go next on this life-journey. Although I am energized by setting goals and making plans, I’ve never been one to make New Year’s resolutions.  If something seems like a good thing to do, I either go for it or put it on the back burner until the time is right; if it’s meant to be, it will happen.  Nonetheless, there’s something to be said for rituals that challenge us to step back and reflect on who we are –  our values, our dreams, and our intentions to bring the two together – and so I’ve been thinking about what kind of ritual would help me move forward in 2009.


It’s funny how sometimes that universal magic of synchronicity can weave together so many random threads.  As I’ve been working on my Mantras & Meditations  series of paintings, I’ve been focusing on being still and simply listening to my inner voice for words and affirmations that are meaningful and inspiring. The practice of creating art around mantras and meditations has been very grounding for me, and I have been sensing myself opening up to new ideas and possibilities.  In the midst of this focusing on words that shape being and action,  I came across a post that Leah, host of Creative Every Day and Art Every Day Month, wrote about Christine Kane’s practice of choosing a defining word for the year.  Instead of creating a long, onerous “To-Do” list of resolutions that inevitably fall by the wayside, Christine suggests that we create a one word theme that will serve as a guide and inspiration throughout the year – an annual mantra! 


I chose two words, because they represent a process that is very important to me.  First, I want to learn to Listen more deeply and fully, both to my inner voice and to the unspoken words of others. I want to turn off the static that surrounds me and tune into the messages that come in silence. Then I want to Reach – reach within, reach out, reach for, reach above, reach below, reach beyond the limits I have intentionally and unintentionally set for myself. Listen ~ Reach… my mantra for 2009.  It makes me feel that anything is possible.


What word would you choose? 

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