An afternoon at the local park while Mary was in town. Beers and watermelon and little ones playing in the creek, Rupert fell in (or maybe it was Henry) and we ate crisps and caught up, and I laughed lots. She’s such a joy of a friend, and having all these old friends nearby and in the hills we grew up is pretty wonderful.
My friend Sophia writes a very lovely Tiny Letter, a blend of her special kind of courage, good humour and insight. It’s one of my favourites.
Last week, she talked about the idea of TEMPERANCE, having drawn the card from her tarot at a time of expansion and movement. I was struck by the way she brought such beauty and compassion to that card, that concept, during such a hard season (we’re all in it, surely - this unfolding of the year and the heightened emotions of a busy and prickly summer).
‘temperance embodies an attitude of finding order in chaos. of allowing. of patience. it signals an ability to hold and merge opposites, find meaning in loss, and dance through pain. there is an alchemy that is born now that we have completed our journey through Temperance. something new is created when we allow things to be as they are, when we let life happen and still rise up as ourselves -- it is a subtle form of magic’.
It’s something I keep coming back to, trying to let life happen and still rise up as myself.
You can subscribe to her L O V E L E T T E R S right here.
Closing in on the year, taking some time to catch up on things, reading, making lists, thinking through ideas and setting intentions. I love these in-between days and in-between times.
I went to an especially sweaty and charged yoga class this morning and it was a real time for transitions, each pose, each sequence. After ten years of practice I mostly jump back into plank from crow pose. And today I was thinking about that moment of transition, when one thing became another - rising out of the balance and using all my strength to open out. Maybe it was the heat, but I loved the letting go and trusting, knowing that I had worked to this pose, this change. It was a nice moment of alignment.
A morning in bed and out the back in the shade reading this gem. Such an easy, engaging and punchy-fun book, I like Busy a lot.
We had a brilliant afternoon with friends, at my sister’s house, food and bubbles and lots of kids running around. We’re nearing 20 years with these loved ones and really, what a team.
So poignant - I love the way this poem feels gritty, like the cold ground it references. It’s still warm though, tender and precise, everyday beauty and sadness layered in small moments and memories.
I've pulled the last of the year's young onions.
The garden is bare now. The ground is cold,
brown and old. What is left of the day flames
in the maples at the corner of my
eye. I turn, a cardinal vanishes.
By the cellar door, I wash the onions,
then drink from the icy metal spigot.
Once, years back, I walked beside my father
among the windfall pears. I can't recall
our words. We may have strolled in silence. But
I still see him bend that way-left hand braced
on knee, creaky-to lift and hold to my
eye a rotten pear. In it, a hornet
spun crazily, glazed in slow, glistening juice.
It was my father I saw this morning
waving to me from the trees. I almost
called to him, until I came close enough
to see the shovel, leaning where I had
left it, in the flickering, deep green shade.
White rice steaming, almost done. Sweet green peas
fried in onions. Shrimp braised in sesame
oil and garlic. And my own loneliness.
What more could I, a young man, want.
This week has taken its toll. Grief layered upon grief, this time the kind where you lose your heart through the floor. When finding words and catching your breath feel too hard. I flew up to Sydney to be with a friend because it’s the only thing you can do, when things fall apart. When I left ridiculously early Sunday I took a moment with this clearing sky, this expanse of bright beginning and felt the weight of what that might mean for Soph.
A good one, especially since I managed a run, and a coffee with my mum and then laughed with joy at the Stirling Christmas Pageant, then a nap and a wine and then a talk at the local library with Behrouz Boochani (via Skype from Manus Island). He spoke so beautifully and intelligently, his writing has moved me so much and been such a powerful insight into this traumatic story of our country.
Afterwards Luci and I had a wine and dinner at the pub, a cool Hills evening and talked through all the important stuff.