seeing wind

I just finished quilting a piece that has been in the works on and off over the past two years. Inspired by a random placement of scraps and falling within the parameters of my mandala series, the waves of circular hand quilting just kept spiraling out of the center,

P1140162

P1140160

resolving with a windmill effect of evenly spaced lines alternating directions from corner to corner…

P1140164

The thing about a quilt is that the time and space created with the stitching actually makes it possible to emerge with a completely different perception from that which it began with. It is possible to become so completely absorbed in the rhythm of the stitches and forget what the image actually is.  Only the color and texture of the moment are real.  For me, quilting stitches are the core energy of a piece, the thing that makes it truly come alive.  It is a profoundly intimate experience, hands moving to the wave of thread weaving in and out of fabric…

It was late last night when I finally put it up on the wall to consider what to bind the unfinished edges with, stared at the image for awhile like an objective observer seeing it for the first time, and went to bed feeling something familiar I couldn’t name.

seeing wind cropped

Nora and I had had another long walk deep into the woods in my neighborhood earlier in the day. I love the fact that neighbors offer access to their land generously and feel free to roam to my heart’s content. It was a gray day with swiftly moving clouds and the sound of wind marking our progress. The whistle and swirl of tree tops swaying soon became the rhythm guiding my pace. It is a sound that is out there and at the same time vibrating through branches and trunks through to roots deep in the earth. It is such a sacred sound, poignant in a way that makes me want to start swaying too. It’s been like this for as long as I can remember. The sound of wind in the woods always evokes the swirl of something deep in my belly.  And the spring warmth of the air moving inside my open jacket and the smell of pine and bark and dormant spring life was also making this particular experience a rich one.

Arriving at the pond, I watched the water rippling in this wind too.

P1140138

It’s such a direct way to ‘see wind’ this way. No amount of waiting to capture the swaying of tree branches can yield such clarity. Not for lack of trying though. I sat there with camera focused on the wildly swaying branches (yes, they really were swaying!)next to me and click, the image offered no hint of the rush of air that was actually there.

P1140140

Turning back to gaze at the truth of wind living in the pond, and as if it wasn’t enough to see the wind blowing across the water in one direction, a gust from another direction registered it’s presence perfectly like this…

P1140137

I was seeing wind.

Arriving home, I looked up into the sound whirling through the wide berth of sky above my meadow and saw two hawks riding the airstream of wind that was blowing there too, dipping and soaring like the elegant gliders they are born to be.

P1140141

I realize gazing at the quilt this next morning that the familiarity I feel is in seeing simultaneously the outstretched winds of a hawk in a cross current of air.  It is a unique moment to rest in. I am seeing wind here too. With this recognition, the telltale swirl in my belly begins. Synchronicity or coincidence? And, is it still art when the sight or sound or feel or taste of something registers so viscerally and then in the blink of an eye, passes?

Whichever, I do know I am now able to see wind a whole new way….

flavor

I went to a community book sale this weekend. I certainly don’t need any books, and certainly not any more cookbooks. But like a moth to a flame I was drawn to the table where all the available jewels of culinary wisdom lay in waiting. Circled several times while scanning the range of old and new publications. The first one to reach out to me was a brand new copy of “Hope’s Edge: The Next Diet for a Small Planet” by Frances and Anna Lappe, and I reached in to meet it. And even though I emerged with an inspiring small stack of findings, I knew this book would be the heart of the eclectic group….

P1140134

But I’ve been working my way up to it. Most of the weekend was spent digesting the contents of the one cookbook in this stack now sitting on my kitchen counter, called “Fresh Indian” by Sunil Vijayakar. Delightful! Full of simple adaptations of traditional Indian dishes with all the requisite herbs and spices that distinguish this flavorful cuisine. All the while making a mental list of what I have and don’t have in my kitchen. Need to get some more turmeric. Have lots of cumin and coriander, check. Plenty of both ground and stick cinnamon, ground fennel and seed, check. Chili powder and flakes, largely unused over the years but present, check. Mustard seeds, check. Curry leaves and garam masala, must acquire and play with these two I have no experience with. No cardamom at all. And that’s what I became obsessed with. I love cardamom. I always keep ground cardamom in my stock of spices and love to add it as that secret something to certain baked goods. Now I was focused on the use of cardamom pods that most of these recipes called for and spent time with Google learning more about them.

P1140133

Cardamom is grown in just a few places in the world with the specific conditions it requires. It is considered one of the most valuable spices due to its rich aroma and therapeutic properties. The seeds of the plant contain a variety of important minerals such as calcium, sulfur, and phosphorus. They also contain a volatile oil composed of acetic and formic acids. This volatile oil, which makes up about five percent of the seed’s mass, has aromatic and medicinal properties, and it is what makes cardamom so valuable.

Cardamom, and my fresh homemade ‘mother’s milk’ would become the core of my post cleanse meals.

But first, I needed to get some of these glorious pods. Excited to be the first one in our local whole foods coop early Sunday morning, I arrived home with, amongst a small stock of fresh vegetables, a small bag of cardamom pods (they ARE indeed expensive!), fresh mint and cilantro, a good size bag of ground turmeric, and a small jar of prepared galangal paste. Galangal is Thai form of ginger, something I typically crave when in Thai restaurants, and this particular jar radiated on the shelf when it saw me. Smile. I was ready for my first post cleanse day of full meals after eating broth and vegetables of the large pot of soup made to break the fast. Lunch became a small pot of this vegetable soup reheated with some brown rice, a few teaspoons of the galangal paste and some mother’s milk.

P1140126

Delicious! The flavors burst from this simple soup.

I can’t remember the last time I used the word flavor. Distinctive to the use of a little bit of something special, I realize that all my months of much needed comfort food lacked this particular feature. Comfort food after all, embodies the primary characteristics of blended, warm and consistent. Not at all like the bursts that one might associate with something unexpected and distinct.

Black beans soaking in an adjacent pot for making some simple Brazilian style black beans for supper, Nora and I headed out for our afternoon romp in the woods.

Walking slowly and scanning the surface for emerging shoots of all new things, I notice the burgeoning presence of precious trilliums and their promise of deep red burgundy just peeking out from the blossoms.

P1140127

But most evident is how the floor of the woods is now exploding with the leaves of trout lilies everywhere.  And then I see just one lone trout lily blossom with its delicate blossom hanging in wait for just the right moment to open and color the carpet of otherwise single leaves with its distinctive flavor.

P1140128

It is like the crocuses and daffodils that have emerged in the middle of the meadow. In the sea of vast rolling ground, these bursts of blossoms add unexpected flavor and focus to the view. A little bit goes a long way.

P1140065

P1140116

Preparation of the black beans is a satisfying affair of chopping onions and garlic, fresh scallions and parsley and allowing everything to simmer to a perfect amalgam. I grate just one large carrot and add to it four leaves of fresh mint torn to tiny pieces, fresh squeezed lemon, and set aside. Finally, the moment I have been waiting for, making a flavorful event of the already cooked brown rice. First, a few chopped mushrooms sautéed in just a hint of olive oil with three of the cardamom pods. Add a splash of mother’s milk and saute until mushrooms release their liquid and pods are soft. I push down on a pod with the back of the spoon and the many seeds release into the pan. Taste one. Kazam! It is a huge and intense burst. I realize too late after releasing all the seeds from the three pods that it will be way too much, that one would have sufficed for this single portion of rice I am preparing. I add about 3/4 cup of cooked rice and an equal amount of mother’s milk to the mushroom cardamom mixture, cook gently until liquid is gone and cover.

It is a simple meal that requires slow and easy.

P1140132

One bite goes a long way. I nurse every forkful, feeling how little food I actually need to fill and be satisfied and how much the flavor mitigates quantity required to feel nourished.

Hope’s Edge is about the politics of food. The consistent message offered from the authors’ exploration of cultures around the globe is that the scarcity of millions is controlled by just a few. It is a brilliant documentation of how hope for ending hunger might be found by embracing ‘living democracy.’ It is a simple concept that embodies the time honored question of “How do we discover our voices and use them to shape the larger world around us?” It is an inspiring text that gives context for considering all the life choices that have brought me to writing about something like flavor, while sharing a value as fundamental as food security with my community, and, how just one voice, amongst a world of voices, might truly make a difference.

white dolphin

It is a brisk walk in the 38 degree gray afternoon. It’s really all about keeping up with Nora and moving fast. It is not the day for a leisurely look around and notice what is there. It is about moving my body and feeling some heat in my bones. It is about moving enough to keep the toxins flowing out of my body in a productive way this last day of the nine days I have been cleansing. I do ‘The Master Cleanse’ (aka known as the lemonade diet) at least once a year. It is typically a ten day affair of giving the body a rest from its usual work of digesting food. It also allows for a complete re-set of habitual patterning at a cell level, and I never know what pattern is actually being cleansed each time I do this.

Once the discomfort of the first few days of de-toxing are over, I find that I can move even more slowly than I am used to, all day long, and still accomplish so much. I have been able to ride a wave of pleasure and peace even in the absence of eating the meals I so love to make. For ease of keeping the work of the cleanse a priority, I typically limit my interaction with the world beyond my home to work related activities. And so it has become a kind of retreat, a happy one in which I have given myself full permission for being in this peaceful place.

I feel the warmth coming into my joints while also anticipating what kinds of things I will make in the next few days to ease back into eating solid food. My last meal of creamed potatoes, green beans, and fish seems like ages ago already.  The cream butter wine sauce that coated the potatoes and became a broth for the chunks of thick cod to steam in was characteristic of the months of rich comfort food I had been craving.

P1140069

Thinking now of all the delicious and satisfying dishes made with full cream and butter, I suppose it was inevitable that my body eventually needed a break from that too…

I broke the cleanse today after only eight days because I just knew it was time. Now my bodymind is ready for something altogether different. The next few days will be about gently consuming fruits and vegetables in preparation for the body to fire up its digestive engine again. And I can’t seem to get the pure white homemade almond coconut milk that I call ‘mother’s milk’ out of my mind.

We are almost at the point where I know I will turn around and head back. Body still moving fast and mind still engaged with food. The flash of white to my left gives me pause. I notice it is yet another piece of the creamy pink quartz that seems to pop up and stud this landscape dominated by oxidized speckled moss covered granite. I stop and watch Nora forge ahead. Then turn, pulled to this piece of stone that from afar just appears as light against dark.

P1140113

The stone draws me in closer and just as I get ready to snap a photo that will hopefully capture some detail that is there, I see the turned head and eye of a dolphin looking straight at me. Well, dolphin is what immediately comes to mind anyway…

P1140114

White Dolphin. Again. Long established as a totem for me, the significance of the sighting surfaces from a deep place in me that has no rational explanation or words. As I continue to walk along the association between mother’s milk and white dolphin is present and strong. Didn’t I already write about this years ago? I can’t remember, but once home, the nagging suspicion leads me to the post ‘mother’s milk’ written on September 28, 2011** just weeks after starting this blog. Here I not only give the recipe for the milk, but share the details of a dream that revealed the magic of White Dolphin to me years ago. It is a surreal experience reading my own words and like a visitor, detached from the source of that inspiration four years ago, consider what today’s message might be.

Far away from the warm salt waters of its natural habitat, White Dolphin appearing in this unlikely context of forest and stone at this particular moment evokes the feeling of an eternal return. Not a path leading from A to B but rather the arc of the circle that always brings me back to the peace of exactly where I am right now, completely nurtured.

Sustenance has become multi-dimensional in a very real and tangible way.

**mother’s milk             September 28, 2011

I woke up this morning craving ‘mother’s milk’.  It is what I have named the luscious combination of almond and coconut to produce a creamy white milk.  I remember finding the recipe and knowing there was something significant about it and the first time I made this milk, it was magic watching the hard nuts and shredded dry coconut transform into something so white and pure!

It is the word transformation that keeps coming to me. A mother’s milk transforms nutrients from her diet into breast milk.  And an animal nurtured by mother’s milk is dependant on another for its basic survival, which is inextricably linked to affection and caring.

Now the memory of a dream from fifteen years ago comes to mind.  I am standing at the edge of a beach, dock & a boat.  Then I am in the boat in the middle of a body of water, and all of a sudden, white dolphins start leaping out of the water over the boat.  They just keep coming and coming and I am overwhelmed and thrilled at the same time.  One stopped and took my finger in its mouth.  I was afraid at first then relax and realize I am okay.   Then there is a baby dolphin pushing its nose down my shirt, trying to get to my breasts.  I realize that I have milk in my breasts, they are so full, so I squeeze some out and the baby dolphin starts drinking, then all of a sudden ‘he’ turns into a little brown boy, and I have the knowledge that this little boy will be human for awhile, but then grow into a great white dolphin.

I could spend the rest of my life trying to analyze this dream.  The message it brings to me is different every time I consider it.  Today I am feeling the awe of transformation and how it is mother’s milk that nurtures this Spirit to change form.  What a powerful metaphor for taking charge of one’s own transformation and ability to change!   So I will endeavor to stay open to where I am needing some change in my life today.  And I will make some ‘mother’s milk’ to honor this awareness.

I’ve already put the 3/4 cup of (raw organic) almonds in a jar to soak.  They will soak for about 8 hours to remove the enzyme blocking agents necessary for allowing the body to digest the almonds fully.  When ready, put the soaked almonds in a blender and grind for 10 seconds.  Then add 3/4 cup of (organic unsweetened) shredded coconut and about 2 cups of warm (not hot) water and blend for 1/2 minute.  Then fill the blender with warm water and blend again for at least another minute. I strain this mixture through cheesecloth into a wide mouth pitcher first.  The first time I did this it was a little clumsy, but quickly learned just the right size of cheesecloth that would allow me to pour and capture enough of the pulp to squeeze out the milk that is in the pulp.  It takes three or four rounds of pouring and squeezing to empty the blender, yielding about a quart of milk.  Pour it into a glass quart jar for storage.  It keeps in the refrigerator for about a week.  It will separate some if it sits a long time (like mother’s milk!), but just shake it up when you are ready to use it again.

A few facts:  contrary to popular myth, coconut milk does not transform into bad cholesterol to clog up arteries. In fact, cultures around the world that depend on coconut as their main source of fat have been found to be free of heart disease. The principle fatty acid in coconut milk is lauric acid, which is the same fat found in abundance in mother’s milk and is known to promote normal brain development and contribute to healthy bones. It also has important anti-carcinogenic and anti-pathogenic properties and is less likely to cause weight gain than polyunsaturated oils.

Almonds are a good source of antioxidants. Research affirms that it is, in fact, a good alternative to breast milk. Almond milk has nearly four times the nutrition of cow’s milk except for vitamin B6. In other words, one cup of soaked almonds plus four cups of water will be equivalent to cow’s milk nutritionally (with the exception of vitamin B6). It will last in the refrigerator about the same period of time that cow’s milk will. It only takes two tablespoons of milk from a young coconut to supplement the vitamin B6.

In addition to using this milk in all the usual ways, it is great to cook with, making curries and stir fry’s and brown rice pudding.  Enjoy and feel nurtured…. I know I will….

wilderness

Today I was dancing with wilderness. With the warm sun rising earlier and earlier, and the promise of a beautiful spring day coming through the open window, Nora and I take off for a first thing in the morning walk in the woods. It’s time to explore a little. We head down the access road that will lead to a pond hidden in the woods.   I’ve only been there a few times. It is our Walden pond in these parts. It is deep enough into the woods to feel completely isolated from human sounds, yet the presence of human is there in the single stool that sits perched at the edge. It invites a sit.

P1140089

Fixed gaze on the water, the illusion that the world is upside down is disorienting, while realizing that everything is a reflection of something.

P1140087

P1140071

The invitation is to rest and contemplate

P1140072

but I am restless. Nora has disappeared into her play land and I call her back, re-direct her with the command “this way” and we head up another path leading deeper into the woods. The path follows a stone wall, portions of which actually have stone wall on both sides. As isolated as we are, the presence of human intervention is here, someone built these walls. Deeper in, the walls become even more present, turning and configured in a way that suggest more than just a boundary.

P1140083

There are so many of them!

P1140080

Was it just a single person, a family, a community?   My mind begins to fill in the gaps between the questions and I get it, this was once true wilderness for these inhabitants. But now, even with the silence and the reclamation of the earth back to what it must have been before this intervention, I still don’t feel wilderness. Not yet.

Continuing on the path, complete silence is met with a sense of complete unknown. This is the tipping point for me. The edge where I feel the sense of something wholly other than human. I think of the bobcat that was found dead on the road nearby recently. That bobcat surely lived in these woods. There is a flash of the barest hint of fear as I think of what is ahead, pace slowed to almost stop in anticipation of turning around, thinking, this is far enough. But the flash is already long gone and I forge ahead. So, this is wilderness. The feeling that I could be the only human that has been here, completely at the mercy of this place now. The feeling dominates, even knowing this is not technically true. Civilization after all, is just around the corner.

For now, I marvel at the organization of this natural world, vine art, fungus beauty, and tree spirit….

P1140082

P1140085

P1140084

After awhile, it feels like enough. We turn around and head home.

pruning

Driving the scenic roads to and from my new home these days it is impossible not to notice the red sheen out there. All the trees that are ready to burst into green are shimmering with it. Even this last round of ice and snow seems to serve only to accentuate this phenomenon of the lifeblood sap of these trees reaching the very tips of their extremities.  This morning’s view is full of imminent burst…

P1130976

In anticipation of this first blossom, I have been pruning the apple trees that live here. Enlisting the expertise of a local consultant and learning the art of removing what no long needs to be there. I am suspending disbelief that the space we are creating between limbs and buds will only encourage new growth.

P1130988

I have to trust that the scars that are left will heal over beautifully.

P1130987

It is amazing the amount of wood on the ground right now. And it is amazing how beautiful each one of these trees is. Each one has such strong character.  Their names finally come to me as I walk and greet each one this morning.

Meet Claire.  She occupies the center of the meadow and her elegant shape is unparalleled.

P1130980

Gus lives at the edge and reaches out with persistence to touch the beauty of Claire.  He is a giant, old and soft and intimidating.

P1130979

Juliana is in the center of the five, unassuming, simple, and already easy to take care of.  Her steady ground allows her upper limbs to dance with grace.

P1130981

Sally is a bit defiant.  She is also at the edge like Gus, but reaches away toward potential adventure beyond the meadow.  Her riotous curls will require quite a bit of work to get her ready for new growth…

P1130982

And last but not least there is Simon.  He firmly brings up the rear in his position at the furthest edge of the meadow.  He’s a bit of a goofball with spiky hair and gangly limbs and I smile every time I see him.

P1130985

I realize I can appreciate their beauty up close because there is a perfect amount of space between each one, giving me perfect perspective to take in their individual essences. Unlike orchards where the trees are planted for efficiency, Claire, Simon, Juliana, Gus and Sally enjoy the freedom of the full breadth of their energetic bodies, while still be clearly connected to each other. It is only from a distance that they can be seen dancing together in the meadow…

I’ve been told it will be a few years of this effort of pruning and shaping before the fruit of the labor will be born. Smile. In the meantime, I am enjoying the process of getting to know each one of these beauties intimately.

firsts

It is such a potent time of year. Spring. Snow melting. New growth. Resurrection. FIRSTS. It is also the time of year that both me and my brother and each of our first borns came into this life.

We have some pretty potent family history too.

The story goes like this. My mother was given a due date of late March when she was pregnant with me. I ended up being born on April 3, ‘Maundy Thursday’, at 12:31 pm under a full moon. Two years later she was given a similar due date for her pregnancy with my brother and he was born March 24, ‘Maundy Thursday’, at 12:30 pm under a full moon. As if this wasn’t enough of a ‘coincidence’, I was given a mid March due date when pregnant with my daughter. She was very late, and literally did not emerge until the moment my brother walked through the doors of the hospital where she was born, on the day of his birthday March 24th. The famous line in the birthing room that day was from the attending midwife who took one look at Molly’s over cooked red skin and said, “It’s almost as if she was waiting for something…” hmmmm….

I was talking to my mother a few weeks ago on March 24th and she reminded me that it was also my bother’s birthday. I’m sure I sounded a little exasperated when I said, “I know Mom!”, thinking to myself, as if I would ever forget my own brother’s birthday! It was later in the day that it hit me, that perhaps what Mom was alluding to was the fact that we each gave birth on this same day…and with the spirit of sharing in celebration, sent her this favorite photo of mine that embodies the very essence of love between child just recently born and mother….of me and my daughter when she was just three months old.

Molly & Mom 001

These potent threads tie us to each other and to this time of year when the birth of color and birdsong and anticipation is really strong.

My parents came to spend this past weekend of birthday, full moon, and Easter with me this year. The better part of one whole day was spent making pata, the cherished Albanian pie that my grandmother used to make. The family has continued the tradition since she passed with their own versions made with frozen phyllo dough. However my grandmother made her pata with homemade phyllo dough and I have been determined for this to be my way too. I’ve been experimenting for years and recently tried again. As if to resurrect the spirit of this dish that has held such meaning in our family. I’ve met with some success; a miraculous re-creation of something that has brought back a rush of childhood memories sitting in my grandmother’s kitchen with just one bite. Photos sent to other family members evoke sighs of memory and desire for this food we love.

P1130950

pata

So I shared the process with Dad this weekend, a first since my grandmother passed. Together we made qupe e mish (onion and meat) pite (pronounced ‘pata’, also known as byrek). We slow cooked in the oven a pound and a half of locally grown stew beef in red wine and chopped onions. Cooled, the beef is cut into small pieces. More fresh onions are chopped and sautéed in water. The onions and chopped beef are added to whisked eggs to become the filling between the layers of phyllo dough that has been stretched together with butter between each layer to form a bottom and top crust. It is not something that can easily be made from a recipe. It has to be experienced. Sharing this experience with Dad was like a new beginning within an ancient lineage of tradition.

I woke this morning to the sound of morning doves for the first time this spring. Anticipation of this first warm spring day was met with patches of melting snow, rushing water, and navigable trails in the woods during the first real hike of the season. More firsts. Nora and I were out for hours. She led the way of course and I dawdled and took in the infinitely potent scenes of ice meeting water, snow meeting trail, objects re-emerging, surfaces of both dead and alive trees pulsating in the warmth of the sun, and variations of emerging green….

P1130965

P1130956

P1130961

P1130974

P1130972

P1130969

P1130975

quickening

The woods call and Nora and I are more than happy to respond. The snow has been receding slowly but steadily for the past few weeks and we are able to actually walk on bare ground to the edge of the woods. I have long since run out of kindling and am excited to fill the bag I have brought along. With sun shining off the relatively unmarked white carpet in front of us, Nora races off as we cross the threshold into the forest proper. And I take only a few steps to realize that snowshoes would be welcome today, my foot sinking well beyond the top of my boot. Not wanting to go back, I forge ahead slowly, alert to where each step takes me both horizontally and vertically. I abandon my kindling gathering mission and follow Nora now tracing our familiar path down to the brook. The snow is lightly crusted with a faint dust, crunchy and soft at the same time. It doesn’t take but a minute or two before the magic of this place begins to resonate. Looking down, as if to confirm, there is a green heart smiling back up at me.

P1130924

Aside from a few piles of scat and Nora’s tracks, there is very little evidence of movement on the ground other than the sprinkling of pine needles, leaves, and wind strewn branches. So imagine my surprise when I round a bend and see an orchestration of dropped leaves on the surface in perfect sync with what would be a rhythm of footsteps in the path.

P1130927

As if they were carefully placed to create this path. Except there are no footsteps. Just shallow indentations that might be the shadow of snowshoe tracks, from a month ago? Mine?  Someone else?  These leaves didn’t just blow into place in each of these spaces. Did they? I feel a quickening in my heart that silences the mind that searches for a rational explanation. There very well could be one I suppose. But it doesn’t feel that way at all. It simply feels like magic afoot.

My heart quickens a second time as I encounter the pile of strewn branches littering the end of this trail of leaves. Clearly there is a downed branch or two from the stormy winds of late. But the concentration of twigs and smaller branches all in this one spot are crisscrossing and layering in a way that also feels like something orchestrated.

P1130928

I will be able to fill my bag and then some from this one place. After checking in on the brook

P1130932

and taking in the still winter scene of the pine forest below,

P1130931

I return to this veritable treasure trove of wood for the taking, fill my bag to capacity, and begin back up the path of leaves.

P1130935

Now I am noticing the ring of melt around tree trunks, as if the heat of each these living breathing trunks is consciously clearing the way for spring.

P1130936

The quickening I feel this time comes from a clear thought of, ‘these trees know exactly what they are doing’. I turn to look back and as if in answer to this thought, I am shown another smaller path of leaves like breadcrumbs making a path deeper into the woods in another direction, this time with no indentations or tracks at all. There is no mistaking the magic of this particular sighting, same leaves, same deliberateness of arrangement, as if the trees are writing music to herald the coming of spring.

P1130933

I recently completed renovating the porch room which faces east and takes in the full breadth of woodland edge that calls. Rearranging the furniture was a challenge. It was all about where the couch sat and how it would be angled. After trying so many variations, I finally found a place that allowed all the other pieces to simply fall into place like puzzle pieces.

P1130943

Significantly, this included leaving the entire east window wall without anything at all.

P1130944

Sitting in the sweet spot of the couch, I look out and see the reason why. The large tree that sits right outside this room is now, majestically, the center of the space between me and the edge of the forest. She anchors and at the same time literally becomes part of the room with her presence. Her energy is so strong as to have orchestrated even this, an arrangement of furniture. She has provided quickening for this indoor space I love to be in almost as much as the woods, empowering the room to spring to life and become animated.

P1130942

I suspect these episodes of experiencing quickening are going to be pretty constant now until the mass of gray outside becomes spring green….