A silent Saturday morning full of nature’s beauty.
A silent Saturday morning full of nature’s beauty.
So… this morning I let Beaumont the Sheepadoodle write his own Dawlentine’s Day post! And yes, as always, I seem to bear the brunt of his… attitude.
It includes a poem he wrote just for you, his favourite peeps!
He asks that you puhleaaassse, pretty please with a dawgie bone on top, come and visit him on his blog so he can slobber you with Dawlentine’s Day love!
You know what to do… just click the link and c’mon over!
And below is my Valentine’s Day Love contribution!
The Spirit of the Wolf Clan ©2021 Louise Gallagher
spirit of the wolf clan running through my veins Fierce. Loyal. Fearless. streams of wildness flowing endlessly through the vast unknowing of the mysteries of life endlessly flowing through the untamed fires of my heart burning away all resistance to run Wild. Bold. Free.
The moon. The moon. Oh galaxy of night dreams…
Okay. So that line just wrote itself out when I started to type. It’s kind of a prequel to Spirit Wolf Clan.
Go where the prompt leads you and publish a post on your own blog that responds to the prompt. It can be any variation of the prompt and/or image. Please keep it family friendly. Prompts close 7 days from the close of my post.
The Spirit of the Wolf Clan is where the prompt took me – first to the poetry, then to the artwork.
All of its creative expression inspired by a prompt to write something, anything, about this month’s Wolf Moon.
Someone asked me yesterday how it is that I just seem to keep creating. How does it happen, they asked.
I don’t really have an answer as much as a sense of memory beyond this known world… A feeling of being open to the whispers of all of life flowing around me and feeling that presence stirring the creative forces deep within the crucible of my belly.
Once stirred, the forces start bubbling up in a wild dancing concoction of words and images weeping through every pore of my body, yearning to get out.
So I let them out.
Perhaps, told my friend, it is that I listen to the whispers and do not censor myself. I don’t criticize, condemn or judge my work-in-process nor in its relative completed state (relative because… well there’s always word for one more brushstroke or one more edit out of a word). I look at it through loving eyes and ask, “What are you here for me to embrace? What windows into my creative nature are you seeking to be opened?”
See, I believe that whenever we say something like, “I”m not very creative,” it’s actually our yearning to experience our creative nature calling out.
We can see through the window, we sense creativity — how would we recognize what we judge to be its absence if we didn’t? — but we’ve never opened the window to let the essence of its nature flow in and out and all around us.
Yesterday, I read a prompt. It stirred the creative forces deep within my belly. I looked through the window of my soul, deep into their depths and opened the window.
… and the spirit of the wolf clan flowed free.
Do pop over to Goff Jame’s place and open the window to his creative force. And once you’ve sated your senses there pop over to Eugi’s Causerie and immerse yourself in all the poetry and sights of the Wolf Moon.
“Creativity,” she said, “Is a muscle. Use it or lose it.”
At least, that’s what I remember the muse whispering in the sweet nectar of that space just before the dawn where I drift in blissful dreamland, just before Beaumont the Sheepadoodle comes and sticks his wet nose in my face.
It’s his signal. “I have to go. Out. Now.”
Of course, The ‘now’ when it’s -23C (-9F) with the windchill takes a few minutes to happen. By the time I’ve layered up, Beau is at the front door. If he could cross his legs I’m sure he would.
We went out. Walked the quiet, frozen streets for 15 minutes while he contemplated the perfect spot to do his business.
Beaumont is a master at picking his moments (and spots). If I’ve made him wait he’ll make me wait too.
But, back to the muse and her whisperings.
Since I can remember, I have loved writing prose and poetry. I’m not a rhymer. I just feel great joy experimenting with the words to create images and connections and ideas. I love playing in the flow.
On Monday, the inspiration to play came from a poetry prompt at dVerse.
Today’s challenge, should you choose to accept it, is to write a quadrille poem. If you’re new to dVerse or the quadrille, it’s simply a poem of 44 words (excluding the title.) You MUST use the word “way” in your poem.
I accepted the challenge and the words flowed.
The first line that came out of my pen was, “That’s no way to be a lady.”
I laughed and invited it to wait. “You’re much more of a #ShePersisted kind of prompt,” I told it and saved it in my #ShePersisted quotes file. I know it will be waiting for me to pick up the brush and start creating anew.
‘Cause that’s the thing about inspiration. It doesn’t have a best before date. It only asks that we take note and trust that when the time is right, it will be there inviting us to come alive in its vision unfolding.
I began again on divining the essence of the ‘way’ to write my Quadrille. This time, the words settled onto the page like honey melting in a mug of hot lemon tea. The perfect blend of sweet and sour. Smooth and syrupy.
Okay. So it wasn’t as fast as honey melting in hot tea. It took several hours to get the words to sing within the parameters of a Quadrille. Exactly 44 words (not including the title).
But that’s the thing about creativity. It isn’t a once in a lifetime occurrence. It’s an, ‘I’m always flowing in and all around you’ kind of medium. Like the tide. Always ebbing and flowing. Constantly in motion.
My job isn’t to watch the waves roll in. My job, my passion, my creative urge is to dive in and ride the arc, carving my words onto the page like a surfer catching the break, swooping and dipping as she rides the curl, body balanced within the crashing swell until there’s no wave left to ride and she paddles back out to catch the next one and the next.
Creativity is everywhere. Creativity has no beginning nor end. It just is. A force of nature. A fact of life.
Which is why, I didn’t stop with writing a Quadrille. I painted it too.
Ahh…. that muse. She takes such delight in play.
Go Right ©2021 Louise Gallagher Thinking I’d find a shortcut to happiness, I blindly followed the road most travelled. The road veered left. My heart said, go right. I followed my heart. There are no shortcuts to happiness. There is only the way of the heart leading through Love.
And P.Ss — the song that was singing in my head as I painted happened to be a song written in the 60s by Malvina Reynolds and made popular by the great Pete Seeger.
Perhaps it will inspire you too!
When the email arrived carrying a link to ‘The Gift’ I wasn’t really expecting it.
Sure, when Ian Hanchet (the gift giver) commented on my poem “If I Could...” he wrote, “I was inspired to immediately pick up my guitar and melody flowed from me. I recorded it on my phone, but I need to become more acquainted with the rhythms of your poem so that I may do each phrase justice. Too bad my life just got super busy. Maybe Next week I can return to this work of wonder.” When I read his words I thought, ‘how lovely’ and promptly wrote back to thank him and to let him know how excited I was he liked the poem that much.
And then, I let it go.
Yesterday, Ian emailed to say he’d finished the song and included the audio link.
I cried as I listened to it. Not just because Ian is a talented musician with the kind of voice that makes me feel like I am sipping an after-midnight scotch in a moody, crowded jazz bar somewhere along a dimly lit side-street in Soho only those who ‘know’ can get to after going down a flight of stairs leading to a deep red door that opens into the mystical world of late-night jazz, but also because in his gift I received something beautiful and precious — The gift of being seen.
I wrote back to Ian after listening to what he calls, ‘our song’ – which in and of itself feels like a rare gem to be treasured always – and told him how special his gift is.
Ian’s gift also carried me back in memory to another gift of a song I received years ago from my dear friend, artist, musician, writer Max C.
In 2014, when I changed the name of this blog to Dare Boldly, Max had read my declaration of identity and felt inspired to send me a piece of music he’d written to accompany it. He asked me to record my voice reading the declaration and then, he put it to his music.
Like Ian’s gift, Max made me feel ‘seen’.
I hadn’t forgotten about Max’s gift, though I hadn’t thought of it in a long while. What I had forgotten, however, was my declaration of identity – it’s the one I share at the top of this post.
That’s what Ian’s gift brings me. Full circle back to remembering – I am the song. My song.
What a powerful and liberating gift. To remember…
We are each ‘the song’ of our life.
We are each, The Song Maker. The Song Singer. The Song.
Let us always sing outloud. Let us each sing of truth, beauty, kindness, hospitality, generosity of spirit, Love.
Let us sing each other awake in a world we create together of beauty, awe and wonder.
Thank you Ian for your gift of many gifts.
I revel in gratitude.
PS — along with being a musician, singer/song-writer, poet, Ian is an amazing writer, deep thinker, music historian and generous human being. You can find him on his blog, Vignettes and Bagatelles.
What I Want. ©2021 Louise Gallagher
I want to live in wonder to see the world fresh as a new born slippery wet and squirming from the birth canal falling into arms of love holding me safely wrapped in swaddling cloth sewn with velvety silken streams of laughter and joy flowing all around me. I want to live in the awe of life unfolding right here, right now in this moment giving birth to possibilities awakening within the unfathomable beauty of the world pounding through my veins pumping my heart full of the mystery of this morning reincarnating itself within the dark of night passing through star lit skies and moonbeams streaming into day bursting at the seams of my anticipation of the wonder of it all when I open my eyes, wide and stretch my arms even wider to that place where my heart breaks wide open to catch falling stars rain drops and tears I want to scream above the howls of wolves on full moon nights and wind swept mountain tops don’t you dare cry for me Argentina there are no tears needed to wash away this wonder of living beyond the limitations of my fear unravelling in the fullness of every courageous step I take to drive me far from that place where I believe fear will keep me safe from feeling the slings and arrows of fate there is no arrow that can pierce my heart when my heart is open there is no riptide that can pull me under when my arms are open wide and there is no wind that can blow me over when I stand strong strong enough to hold on to only love because I know there is nothing to fear but fear itself and I am born to be wild wild beautiful free. I am born born to be free to cry and laugh and say I love you because I love you is my battle cry my morning song my heart's delight and nothing can stop me singing I am fearless and fierce enough to let life get the best of me because that that is what I want to live in the endless wonder of being me.
I enjoy putting words to my paintings. Yesterday, when I had finished this one, my beloved asked me, “What kind of berries are those?”
Red, I replied.
And thus…. a haiku was born.
This morning, as I sat at my desk and watched the night sky fade into reds and rose and blue, I snapped the first photo.
And another haiku was born.
I am fascinated by the haiku form — both by its endurance through so many centuries and its compactness inviting the author/reader to say something about nature and life in so few words — the form is precise – three lines with a syllable count of 5 / 7 / 5 to equal 17 syllables in total.
From the website, Poets.org — “the philosophy of haiku has been preserved: the focus on a brief moment in time; a use of provocative, colorful images; an ability to be read in one breath; and a sense of sudden enlightenment.”
It’s a great form to test and stretch your creative muscles.
The painting of the berries was an experiment with watercolours, acrylic ink, spray ink and Inktense watercolour pencils.
Listen to It All ©2021 Louise Gallagher I want to listen to it all to the sun rising into the indescribable blue of infinity full of whispering clouds floating within the sweet nothingness of endless sky falling into the story of forever kissing the far-off horizon where it dips down to touch the untold mysteries of the sea diving deep deep into the silence of the womb of mother earth’s divine creation. I want to feel it all deeper than my skin peeled back to reveal my blood flowing red my heart beating wild in love with the ecstasy of being alive in this world of beginnings and endings forever tied up in the stories we tell so that we do not have to listen to the beauty of the silence that yearns to be heard above the cacophony of our human noise. I want to listen without knowing I am listening to anything other than life unfurling in all its mysterious beauty and unfathomable cruelty impregnating the darkness and the light with the wholeness that rises up to embrace me when I listen deeply to it all.
If I Could Give You My Heart ©2021 Louise Gallagher If I could I would give you my words plump and full of promises dancing in the ecstasy of never having to leave you without words If I could I would paint you the sunrise bold and fiery colours streaking across the sky full of morning delight threaded with gold melting like butter upon a piece of warm buttered toast If I could I would sing you a song of sunset full of sun-bathed mountains stretched out across the horizon like a dragon sleeping at the edge of the world where sky tumbles into the sea and the moon rises high and pulls the night up into a sky full of stars falling like snow melting your dreams awake If I could give you my heart would you listen deep to the beat of its silence echoing throughout the vastness of time wooing your fear of falling asleep like a lullaby spun into a cradle of love that can never break If I could give you my heart would you listen deep?
Yesterday, I entered my studio without any clear idea of what I wanted/needed to create or without having heard what the muse was whispering into creation.
I opened my art journal to a blank page. Threw down some colour and text and lines. And took a breath.
A deep one.
I closed my eyes, let my conscious mind sink down, down, into the crucible of my belly, into the font of where creativity rises up to inspire, cajole, exhort me into being wildly, joyfully present to all that is present where ever I’m at.
And that’s when I felt the murmurings.
Of words. Of song. Of flowers and trees and birds and life flowing.
I started to draw and paint and when I was finished, she appeared.
I told C.C. “She’s my Frida Kahlo meets Marie Antoinette.” He laughed and asked, “Where’s the cake?”
“Her cake is the words she spins into stories the flowers breathe in,” I replied. (I might even have been a little flippant. But the muse didn’t care…)
And thus, the words appeared… Her words grew into the stories flowers told to chase away grey skies and cloudy days.
This morning, when I sat down at my desk, I didn’t know what I was going to write.
I closed my eyes, took in a breath and watched it sink with my conscious mind floating on air down, down, down into the crucible of my belly. The busy places in my heart grew still. The stuck places melted… and that’s when I felt the murmurings.
Of words dancing and sunrises melting and hearts listening deeply and breaking open to love.
And the words guided my heart into creative expression.
The story of all life holds beginnings turning into endings,
endings beginning again in a new story.
Every season turns into the next becoming
both the ending and beginning of the story of life
to be continued.
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