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Wednesday, February 27, 2013

To Stride over Hill and Dell

To stride over hill and dell
To stride over hill and dell
To scoop up these small facets of light,
refracted by the holly, broken by the western squall.
My fingernails are ever gritty with the marks of the land,
the discards of crows and
the vain attempts of snatching scent from the loam.
But if I've learned one thing, 
it's that there is no "too old" for squatting in the detritus, sifting for story.
For when I rise, they dip their heads in conspiratorial agreement,
For the crows and I, we sing in bones.

Thursday, February 21, 2013

Lunch Date

Because sometimes, out is better than in.
Until you come home to these goobers of course.
* * *
What warming, delicious, solitary or chatterbox thing have you done today?  I have a friend arriving shortly and while the whole house could use a solid dusting, I think I might slip into the studio for a spell before she arrives.  I know she'll understand.
~ U ~

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

And then there was that whole week I missed

Hello Hello!
I seem to have absolutely missed an entire week down the rabbit hole of my studio (it's like tumbling head over heels through a cabinet of curiosities wherein one might trip over goose wings and catch a swiftly falling cup of coffee followed by a tiny creamer pot spilling it's wares through space).  What this really means is that one, I've been tucked into creativity, and two, I've really missed you!
There has been the delicate swirl of water on heavy paper, the buttery carving of stamps (and smacking them everywhere, oh!  The joy!), the official end of nestering season and the documenting of gifts. 
[There is much more to say on these, but it will have to wait for a later post] 
There has been holy communion with kindred sisters, sometimes over wine, sometimes over cacoa, sometimes a roaring fireplace, sometimes over the beating of drums.
There has been chiming owls, misty skies, black high heels and mud boots, plus a smattering of self-generosity - new house plants included.
And of course, there has been smithing.  I'm calling them Hathor Rings: Luck Amulets for she of a fertile mind and heart, a collection of American turquoise and itsy-bitsy feathers, each drawn and sawn with a rhythmic humming, each one created with prayers of luck and joy breathed into its very fabrication.
(heading into the shop momentarily...)
It's always so good to be back.
Big Love my Friends,
~ Umber ~

Friday, February 8, 2013

Just a few images from this week's outdoorsing.  This morning I'm hustling about, dressing warm, and heading out to a yurt in the woods with some rather magical women.  There will be bonfires and art and maybe even some spontaneous dancing.  I can't wait.  I've been an utter hermit lately and it's time I gave my inner introvert a break.  

Wishing you all a weekend full of hula hoops and pine needles!
~ Umber ~

Wednesday, February 6, 2013

The Huntress

This is a land story.
Now I know, I know, I'm always telling land stories but these are my truth.  When my feet wander trails tracked only by elk, when the dusk turns snowy peaks sherbet, when creek thaw and lichen mingle in my hair, something happens in my chest.  It's like ten thousand tiny shutters flap open and all that is good in me sees all that is grand on earth.
It begins with coffee, as all great stories do, and a sturdy pair of rubber boots.  It begins with the Ridge at your back and the Mountain to your left.  You stroll along the treeline, boots squishing wetly in the constant rivulets and still pools, dogs crashing a zig-zag in front.  You train your eyes to follow a circuit: gaze the skies (watch the geese in tight formation, watch the solitary eagle lazily circling), back to the trees (they're bare now, look for the dark wedge of nests), sweep the ground (you're bound to find an antler soon), scan the horizon (breath in the mountain cold).  Feel the spring of moss; of course this will make your hands dirty, of course a couple winged things will flutter up, but nothing beats that touch. Jump hard when the dogs accidentally flush a northern spotted owl just fifteen feet to the right, and call out your thanks and apologies.  Pluck that cluster of bright white hair from the thorny brambles and tuck it in a pocket, you'll figure it out later.  Take that green and sun-aged piece of hipbone, leave it in the birch grove (because you know that is holy ground).  And when you finally turn back and take the long way, leave a single strand of hair in exchange for your full heart.
The Huntress Ring
(sterling silver and Arizona Morenci turquoise)

Saturday, February 2, 2013

It's a slow, rolling sort of morning.  The crows left bones below the cedars and the coffee went down too easy.  I walked to the grocery for rice milk and avocados but arrived home with butter and chocolate chips.  Harlem jazz is creeping out the single pane windows and swinging down the street with the fog, and from the office, I can hear BC snapping in time.  I've been thinking about alignment.  I've been thinking about shed hunting.  I've been painting fecundity too.  I made two rings for you; they're filled with breath and balance and kyanite and the arcing glow of burnished sterling.  It's good to be alive.