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Looking Back, Looking Ahead

What happened at Overneath It All in 2014?

The WordPress.com stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A San Francisco cable car holds 60 people. This blog was viewed about 2,700 times in 2014. If it were a cable car, it would take about 45 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

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Pieces-Parts

Pieces-Parts

Which feeds you more, the writing or the yoga?

The year Fourteen turned Five, he announced he wanted to have a “going to the moon” birthday party. We invited his entire nursery school class, the Caterpillars, and all fourteen were planning to join us. Five is one of those governing points, the moment at which parents feel free to drop their children at a birthday party, arriving at the dot of two, escaping, and picking them up two hours later, just as the last fork-full of cake is being squished between eager lips. Most of the children in attendance celebrated their birthdays with friends at party places full of bounce houses or stables with ponies. Fourteen’s father and I were brave or foolhardy enough to host the moon party at home.

After the invitations were made and delivered, Turning-Five, his little sister not-yet-two, and I set about making a moon piñata. We bought an oversized red balloon, inflated it, and hung it from a stepladder over newspapers in the kitchen. I made flour and water paste and we tore strips of newspaper, slid them through the paste, and slapped them on the balloon. When the children found out we couldn’t paint the piñata until it was dry, Not-Yet-Two toddled away and Turning-Five got absorbed in a book. I sat on the floor pasting newspaper strips to the balloon, worried it wouldn’t be as resistant to battery as a store-bought piñata. But I had scoured the Internet for a moon-shaped piñata and been unsuccessful. I added more glue to more paper and applied more layers to the sphere.

It took a full week for the piñata to finally dry, and we painted it a happy yellow, the glowing full moon from the night sky. Then, I popped the balloon by cutting through the layers, made a large enough hole, and the children stuffed it full of candy, noise makers, and plastic animals. I used clear packing tape to patch the hole, and it was ready to hang on party day.

Other preparations included downloading a movie clip of the moon landing, edited together with a few launch scenes from the movie Apollo 13, covering star wands in glitter and hot-gluing trailing ribbons to the handles, baking a moon cake sixteen inches around, procuring snacks and drinks, and stringing twinkly stars from interior doorways. I wrote down the party plan: 2:00-2:15, guests arrive; 2:15, show video; 2:25, have everyone wave their star wands and arrive “at the moon.” 2:30-3:00 moon games in the backyard. 3:00-3:10, wash hands. 3:10-3:30 snacks and cake. 3:30-3:40, wash hands. 3:40-4:00, break piñata. If there was any part of the equation I wasn’t certain of, it was whether the piñata would hold for 15 minutes or so of bashing.

When the first guest arrived and the mother dropped her child in our care, Turning-Five’s father looked to me with raised eyebrows, “she’s not staying?” I shook my head. “Do we have enough for them to do?” I glanced at the piñata and waved my written-up plan at him. “We’ll be fine,” I said, mustering more confidence than I felt.

And so if I tell you that at 2:15 all of the guests were sitting in front of the TV, star wand party favors in their hands, glued to the moon landing and gasping as Neil Armstrong stepped out of Apollo 11, and at 3:55 they were bashing the piñata with all of their might, you would need to know that I was both pleased and breathing a huge sigh of relief. If anything went wrong at all, it was that the piñata was so strong the children couldn’t break it. In the moment before frustration turned to whiny mayhem, after each child had taken two full turns whacking at the moon, we got rid of the blindfold, handed the bat to the strongest kid, and let him beat on it without stopping until he finally created a crack. Turning-Five’s father shook the moon piñata then and ripped at the opening with his hands, scattering the contents across the early spring lawn. The children scrambled and their parents peeked over the fence, right on time to collect them.

I had filed away the moon-theme birthday party—now among the family party legends alongside the rainbow party, the get-messy party, the castle party, and the party for my mother at which the dining room chandelier dramatically caught on fire, exploded and dropped burning to the floor—until recently when I found myself planning a birthday party for a different two-year-old, my yoga studio. A more professional business owner might call it an anniversary, but last year when the studio was merely one, I looked up anniversary and birthday and couldn’t find a distinction. So I called one a birthday because birthdays are more cheerful than anniversaries.

Like a little person, a toddling studio with more-or-less adult guests still requires games, amusements, party favors, snacks, beverages, and cakescake (well, two cakes in this case). Planning was fun: door prizes, a guest book, and a guess-the-number game; Yoga Twister, for which I made up the rules and created a huge taped game board on the studio floor; a hooping demonstration by the studio’s talented and lithe hooping instructor; Kirtan, chanting and singing with our devoted Bhakti band; free classes on the day before and day of the party; and snacks and cakes, which I shopped for and made.

And just like any other birthday party, the deep cleaning, shopping, baking, taping, and making absorbed more of my time than studio work usually does, and I was pulled away from some of the other things I normally do. Like writing. My blog was neglected and I missed a variety of days in celebration of which I would have liked to add a post—the full moon in September, the first day of fall, National Punctuation Day, and the studio’s birthday itself. It wasn’t even just that I didn’t have time to write, in the little time I set aside to do so, I found I couldn’t put together a sentence that suited me.

The party was a delight, went off without a hitch, and I believe that both the studio and the people who enjoy their practices there were celebrated. Two in business years feels very similar to two in people years, but I tell myself that the studio is older, more mature, and may start taking on a little more of its own care. I tell myself this because I don’t like that recognizing its birthday took me away from one of my other, most important pursuits. “Which feeds you more,” Frank the talented Rolfer asked me during treatment, “the writing or the yoga?” “Honestly, I wouldn’t want one without the other,” I told him.

And this I know to be true. Practicing yoga, teaching yoga, owning a yoga studio: these have all given me insights into the world, space to grow and learn, physical awareness and stability, and a deeper connection to breath and thought. But writing gives me something else—writing is the place where I can pause and restore, bring memories like Fourteen’s fifth birthday party to mind, and share anew in their energy and meaning. With yoga practice I can notice the world around me, fall in love with a rainbow, glory in the full moon, turn within or move into the universe arms stretched wide. Without writing about my experiences, such moments slip away into a day crowded with moving pieces. Whether in a list, a blog post, or a work of fiction, if I examine what and how I live with words, I feel better, stronger, more complete, more alive.

The new moon dawned Thursday–the Hunter’s Moon–may this new month bring you a smooth transition of seasons, a lovely, languid fall with lots of pretty colors, and at least one delicious piece of cake. Thanks for sharing my journey, Namaste & love, Rxotwister cobra

Electronic Gift

What do you want for your birthday?

Honestly, I can’t imagine any better gift than this column, a gorgeous response to my July post entitled “Dear Abbie.”

http://www.walesonline.co.uk/news/news-opinion/facebook-no-substitute-airmail-says-5758020

With love and happy dances under the full August moon … see you when I’m 48. Namaste, Rxo

Initially Yours

Initially Yours

What’s new?

My first semester in my very first full-time grown-up professional job, I taught four English courses at Suffolk County Community College on Long Island. A week before the semester started, I turned twenty-five. My next youngest colleague, the last full-time hire before me, was forty-seven. She’d been on the faculty for seventeen years. There was a lot of guffawing in the days that led up to the start of the semester about how young I was. Some of my students, my office mate informed me quite gleefully, were likely to be considerably older than I.

I was assigned to teach two sections of developmental writing, a noncredit course students were placed into when they weren’t yet prepared for credit-bearing English. I had one section of Freshman Composition and, in an eleventh hour switch, a section of Advanced Expository Writing into which piled several honors students. Three of my classes met Mondays and Wednesdays; the other one met Tuesday-Thursday.

It’s quite possible that I have never been as tired as I was after the first day, a Wednesday. I remember lying on the carpet of my apartment, the upper floor of a tiny beach cottage three houses from the Long Island Sound, unable to move, barely lifting my head when the phone rang. I would continue to be that tired, all semester long, trying to stay one step ahead of the prep for my classes and reading and responding to the writing of nearly a hundred twenty students.

As my colleagues had predicted, my students’ ages were indeed mixed, from seven years younger than I was to old enough to be my parent. In fact, one of my students that very first semester was the mother of a college acquaintance. The small world continued to spin; however, and my enthusiasm mostly made up for my age. Raised to call anyone older than I was by a courtesy title and a last name, I was learning to address all of my students by their first names.  As a graduate student I had welcomed my students to call me by my first name. So that very first day I invited my students, young and old, to call me Robin. Some of them did. Some of them struggled with pronouncing my last name. Many of them never called me anything at all. A young man who would go on to take two more classes with me and who would eventually wind up an English professor at the same community college found his own solution: He called me Professor Robin.

I wrote to my students because they wrote to me. Many of the assignments that kept me up past two in the morning were informal and ungraded: journal entries, reading responses, or writing designed to get the students expressing themselves on paper. Even responding to required reading, they often spilled out their hearts to me, telling me stories they had rarely before revealed. It took my breath away. They needed to know I had read their words, even if my responses were brief. I used techniques I had learned in my composition courses, underlining phrases I found compelling and querying things that felt half-developed or contrary to their own logic. I made few grammatical corrections, but occasionally an observation where there were errant grammatical patterns. At the end I always wrote a note, a response of my own. And then I wrote, “thanks for sharing, R.”

Thanks for sharing can have a snarky application. I’ve been known to say it to my children after a particularly gnarly report of something disgusting. But when I appended it to my message to these students whose secrets stared up at me from their scrawling penmanship, I meant it as sincerely as I’ve ever meant anything. I signed the letter R because it seemed somehow to be me without being the first name many of them felt uncomfortable calling me or the formality of my last name.

And the R stuck. My first (and second and third) email address was RBourjaily. I started signing nearly everything simply R or, for documents, R Bourjaily. A few people even thought to call me R.

When I opened Radiant Om Yoga, my lawyer encouraged me to apply to trademark the name. It seemed grandiose, unnecessary. Why would anyone else want to have the same name as my studio? I had struggled, though, to find a name that wasn’t anywhere else (and a quick google search suggests that the 87,500 impressions are by-and-large related to my studio, albeit some awfully tangentially). I began to understand that protecting my work and my brand was a good idea. Her office filed the application in the summer of 2011.

The talented designer who created the studio’s logo laid out a business card for me and included a tiny “tm” between Radiant Om Yoga and LLC. In the ensuing twenty-one months, twice the federal trademark office sent back rulings I didn’t understand—were we on our way to a trademark or about to be denied? I couldn’t tell and the lawyer assigned to the file was not inclined to be optimistic. But we agreed it was worth pursuing because none of the trademark rulings were an outright no. For the most part, I rarely thought about the application, focusing instead on teaching yoga to students from six to well over seventy.

Screen Shot 2013-06-09 at 8.01.52 AMThen one day this spring, a letter from the lawyer appeared—my trademark application had moved beyond review and into the final stage. So long as no one challenged the application for thirty days, the trademark would be mine. A trademark. Mine. Somehow the idea made my studio feel a little more rooted, more real. Radiant Om Yoga would be a recognized brand. The thirty days crawled along, but finally in an email confirming the trademark is mine, the lawyer assured me I could begin using the registered symbol. And guess what it looks like? Now encircled, my R has come back to me!

The new strawberry moon is covered by clouds, but it sweetly launches us into summer, with school over and new adventures beginning. Wishing you the sweetest summer possible as your journey continues. Thanks, as always, for sharing in mine, ®xo

Making Turns around the Sun

You have a blog? How long have you been writing a blog?

When Thirteen and Ten were babies, I counted their ages in first days, then weeks, then months. I think that calculus lasts until children are about eighteen months old—then they slip to a year-and-a-half, when someone asks. The milestones we mark start to spread apart—two, two-and-a-half, three—by which time they’re old enough to answer the question for themselves. Some tell with great precision, especially if a birthday approaches. Thirteen, for example, will be thirteen and eleven-twelfths when you’re reading these words—that means he’s just one month away from his birthday and the legal possibility that he could get a learner’s permit to drive. A car.

(deep breath)

Ten is rising eleven. Like most girls, she’s a panoply of ages—sometimes reminding me of her toddler self, other times playful and fully ten, still others casting shadows of the young woman she’ll become, a true zero teen.

My third baby, Radiant Om Yoga—aka ROY—is still in the half-year stage. A toddler, ROY turned one-and-a-half this month. There are days when I watch this precious being stand on its own, wobbling a little but upright. There are others when I wonder if it’ll ever climb out of my arms. Just as with Ten and Thirteen, every stage is precious, but some are more exhausting than exhilarating.

And then there’s Overneathitall, two years old this month. When I set the intention to create and post to this blog, I never imagined the habit it would become, the challenges it would create, and the feeling of immense satisfaction I would derive from regular writing in this forum. Over the past two years while I have undergone significant personal and professional changes, the blog has been a surprising gift, a loyal companion, a place to voice a little bit about me and play with the words that I love.

Birthday season means that my peeps are busily planning parties, this year overnights with their closest friends. The plans ebb from more to less elaborate, but whatever the current mood there are constants: little slumber, a movie or two, lots of food, cake. With April around the corner it’s about time to hammer out the details for Thirteen—plus since Ten is a June baby, we need to find a date soon before summer camps and travel plans spread her friends around the world.

ROY will have a birthday party in September. In our house, on your half birthday you get to choose the menu for dinner. Since a yoga studio doesn’t eat much, we marked the occasion with announcements in class and via social media. ROY is truly a baby of the twenty-first century, even as it is a space to connect to yoga’s whispered wisdom of the millennia.

It’ll be a while before my next birthday. Eighty-eight and I are August babies, although Eighty-eight is once again at an age where people unabashedly ask how old she is and sometimes I’ve added the half year. More often I go for the wow factor and go up a notch, saying, “She’ll be eighty-nine this year.” Slice that cake any way you want: nearly eighty-nine and still feisty and independent make for an impressive track record.

photo-6

I do the same thing with my own age—I’ll turn 48 this year. Sometimes saying it that way means I get confused—on Tuesday I had a form in front of me asking how old I am and I had to think it through—just how old am I really?

I know how old this blog is—two years, sixty-one posts, 6090 views from a total of 58 countries, 59 followers (some of whom I don’t even know!), something in the neighborhood of 65,000 words. A year ago I printed out all that I had posted and thought, that’s half a book. Today it’s a whole book, with room for editing. Not that I think my musings here are book-shaped, but I suspect they suggest a book. I have talked about writing it even, and two years in I wonder if I’m ready. The only way to find out will be to carve out some time and try. Am I willing to? And if I am, what steps out of the way to make room in my twenty-first century schedule? These are some of the questions I’m living just now, looking ahead, even as I breathe in to stay centered and celebrate all of these incredible spring milestones.

The full and new moons are the intended measure for Overneathitall. The sun feels much more like a constant, but we turn around and around it and mark our progress with birthdays and anniversaries and sometimes just a great day. We’re welcoming back the sun from its annual trip south,and it feels so good! Thank you, as ever, for being a part of this journey. With much love & gratitude, Rxo

Overneath It All 2012

What happens when a robin breaks her wing?

The chiropractor told me on my first visit that my shoulder is “acute.” The tightness and stress in my neck, rhomboids, and all manner of tiny muscles that feed into the inners workings of my shoulder plus overuse just before Thanksgiving caused tear-inducing pain. I think of myself as a pain wimp, but according to my doc the shoulder pain I’ve been living with on and off since February would have sent a lot of people over the edge long ago.

Maybe it’s my yoga practice. A couple of years ago I was in a workshop with Doug Swenson and he was answering a question from a participant. She said something like, “I can’t do it on that side, that’s my bad leg.” Doug, small, wiry and strong, shot back, “Then, that’s your teacher leg.”

Our aches and pains do teach us volumes, about what it is to be human and fragile and temporary. That they are object lessons in the making doesn’t make them easier to bear. The pain is one thing; the blues that go with them are quite another.

It’s been a year of aches and pains for me, most of them emotional or energetic. This current shoulder pain aside, my problems are first world problems. In the plus column, I am fed and clothed, I have a roof and a job (well, several), my children are happy, learning and thriving.

Still, pondering the year here at Overneath It All and thinking about writing a review post that might just sound a little like a holiday letter, I sat one recent morning and considered the highs and lows of the year. My word cloud of the 100 most-repeated words in my blog is revealing. I’ve written a lot about my children, about writing, about yoga. No surprise there. I’ve written, apparently, the word “like” many, many times, although I wonder about this because I’m not, like, you know, given to Valley-girl speak. That the word “writing” sits at the foot of it all, a solid foundation, makes my eyes grow wide and I smile. I’ve also written quite a bit about Menards, apparently, and my bank statements confirm I go there to spend money second only to Trader Joe’s on Tuesday mornings.

"Writing," my foundation and what I reach for. It, too, is overneath it all.

“Writing,” my foundation and what I reach for. It, too, is overneath it all.

I feel as though the cloud is incomplete. It doesn’t include the amazing friendships I’ve forged and deepened this year. It doesn’t make mention of a single martini, although I’ve enjoyed more than a few. It doesn’t update the ongoing stories blog posts have touched upon, nor does it project harbingers of what comes next. But it’s a picture of some of it, a snapshot, a place to begin.

At the end of December 2011, I wrote about my visualizations for 2012: This year I’ll be visualizing that published book, more yoga, more writing, happy, growing, engaged children, and yes, more martinis or cups of tea or delicious bites of chocolate, so long as there are friends to enjoy them with. I realized a part or all of these visualizations, although I’ve made less progress on my book than I’d like. And the “growing” part, if you read my last post about Thirteen you already know, has hit a bit of a roadblock. But excellent doctors are working on that. In April I wrote about wishes, specifically the wish for more time. In May I mentioned the garden, rich with sweet snap pea plants. That garden delivered many peas but little else as first weeds and then unbelievable heat took over this summer. I wrote more than once about my car—somehow it continues to chug forward and hold together in spite of itself (knock wood). I mentioned a list of things to do, written when I was five years younger than I am now. One of the undone items I took to heart this fall, and I’m 17 pounds lighter than I was when I wrote that entry. I wrote about the new kittens who are thriving and keep the house alive well past bedtime. For the full blue moon in August, I wrote a line that—and this was a first—a reader actually, kindly, quoted back to me: Breath by breath I rescue myself.

That’s some of what I’ve done this year. I’ve also cried, screamed to release pent-up frustrations while driving, downloaded an inordinate amount of emotional crap to friends who were kind enough to listen, and thumped my pillow more than a few times. I’ve dovetailed alternately between feeling like I was failing whatever test the Universe was hurling my way and feeling like I couldn’t get a break.

And then, the same week that Ten was on stage dancing the Nutcracker role she was destined for, the Party Girl wearing a green dress, I found myself with a sick child (Thirteen), a broken wing and jury duty.

But instead of making everything worse, somehow sitting in a room with a group of randomly selected strangers offered the onset of healing. Like a lingering body pain that teaches us to surrender, rest, and release superhuman expectations of ourselves, jury duty—where this time I did not serve—reminded me to let go, accept what is, and be a little more patient. My reward included completing my civic duty with little overall interruption to my parenting duties and clarity.

The metaphor isn’t hard. We shoulder the world, stand shoulder to shoulder with friends, cry on someone’s shoulder. Shoulder pain refers emotional stresses, burdens in our lives we somehow can’t address or resolve. My shoulder has hurt all through this year and its challenges. It got precipitously worse when I overused it physically, but that corresponded with a particularly heavy moment in my heart. It’s getting better, slowly, with physical care from my talented chiropractor. But I won’t pretend for a moment that it isn’t getting better because when I walked out of jury duty after the second day, I recognized the gift of space—I have space to move, space to manage my own schedule and thoughts, space to parent in, space in my heart, and progressively more space in my shoulder joint. My studio is a welcoming space where I love to work and people arrive every day to further their practice. My home is an evolving space that offers shelter and solace. My yoga creates interior space, my words connective space, my friendships loving space. And 2013? It’s the space of a whole new year, one where I shift beyond the need for rescue and into a larger frontier.

Happy Holidays and thank you for spending this year with Thirteen & Ten & poses & prose & me—I’m giving myself a mini-break from posting. See you around the new moon in January 2013. Much, much, much, much love, Rxo

Both/And

Why is a raven like a writing desk?

The riddle comes from Alice’s adventures at the mad tea party. When Alice is stumped, the Mad Hatter admits he doesn’t have an answer. I don’t know why I’ve been thinking about the riddle of late. It repeats at random moments in my head. Some questions are like that, I want to tell the Mad Hatter. We take them out and ponder them, even asking other people for the answers, and when no answer comes we just keep living the questions.

My daughter, Ten, has been cast as a raven (a crow) in the spring ballet. First she takes a turn as a party girl in December’s Nutcracker. I’m also looking forward, this fall, to Thirteen’s rendition of a hound in his ninth grade’s Hound of the Baskervilles and a handful of band, jazz band, Tiger Choir and orchestra concerts. Who are these extroverted offspring who play and dance and sing in public? Are they really the same children who on the weekend feel a little put out if they can’t stay in jammies and play or read quietly, maybe not venturing farther afield than the basement?

Extrovert/introvert. Yang/Yin. Light side/dark side. I am reminded of another riddle, the one Thirteen told a few years ago when he was dressed as Yoda for Beggars’ Night, a tradition in our Midwestern city that requires children who want candy to go door-to-door the night before Halloween armed with a joke. “How is duct tape like the Force?” He asked the question time and again at doorways up and down our street. Laughing, candy bowls in hand, the person answering the door would invariably shrug, “I don’t know,” and my son would quip, “They each have a dark side and a light side, and they bind the galaxy together.” Like the Force and duct tape, we have both the dark and the light … and we’re bound together by these contrasts. We’re made more interesting and complex by them.

When my words don’t flow, I turn to my yoga mat—so many mysteries are explicated for me there. On the mat in a class there’s the spirit of community, especially at the opening of the practice and again at the end. Somewhere about twenty minutes in, I’m transported into my own space. The room, the teacher, the other yogis blur and I travel inner landscapes, breath by breath. Stand on the right leg, cross the ankle of the left above the standing knee, fold over and touch the earth. The physical glow starts deep in my hip, sometimes as a pinch, more often as a release, and the stretch travels into my low back and down my leg. A deep breath massages the soft tissues and the joint yields; I stretch further. The pose, a preparation for an array of advanced postures, is often called Desk and Chair.

Ten, with the arms of a crow and her legs in position for desk and chair, is both raven and writing desk.

I practice the pose more often than I sit at my real writing desk. Piles of bills, filing, and to-do items patina its surface. But it doesn’t escape me that it was my father’s writing desk before it became mine, twenty-six inches high or typing height, built of sturdy lumber with a hard rubber top. With all of those other items in my home office demanding my attention, writing too easily gets pushed aside. So writing practice, too, requires community. I write where I can declare my intention publicly and appreciate the way that keeps me committed to task. Sometimes I select a table at Starbucks, others I’m ensconced in my Writing Circle, each of us working away for the hour we carve out to co-create.

When writing or yoga flow, the effort feels welcome. When either is stuck or a struggle, the challenge oft-times overwhelms. Everything can feel off or wrong. Dark. Bakasana, Crow Pose, is such a pose for me. This challenging pose requires an inward focus, yes, but also an extrovert-like willingness to go beyond the comfort range of warming up and flexing the body. It’s an arm balance: start in a squat and climb the knees onto the upper arms, squeezing the knees against the upper arms and floating the feet off the mat. The pose feels overwhelmingly hard and since I haven’t learned to allow it, my crow stays perching and doesn’t (yet) fly.

Still, a raven is a good totem for a writer—like other bird totems, the raven is a messenger. The raven carries messages from inner places that may seem dark or unnavigable. The raven invites introspection and change from within. A writer who works from the inside out discovers and uncovers authentic voice, truth in memory, and sometimes even answers. As the journey to a finished piece of writing, or even just one that’s ready to be shared, is long and often scattered with unsuccessful starts, the road to Bakasana is marred by bruised upper arms, fear of falling on your face, and shaking hard while attempting to climb the knees onto the backs of your arms and support your tucked body on your own two hands.

Emerging from practice, I uncurl from around my computer to share my words with my Writing Circle, anticipating feedback that will make my narrative cleave together. Challenged by my yoga teacher to simply, “Climb right on up into Bakasana,” I come more into her world, accepting her support under my hips or her gentle encouragement to try the pose again, this time launching from a pair of blocks or walking my feet up the wall.

The writing desk and the raven, the writing and the yoga, the basement playtime and the plays on stage—both enrich the spirit and nourish the journey, in the quiet on the mat and the clamor of the coffee shop, in the communities where I practice and the times when it is quiet solace that I crave. I encourage my children and myself to enjoy whatever moment we’re in. And I think that there’s nothing crazy or random about the Mad Hatter. Sometimes juxtaposing two seemingly unrelated items cracks open a whole new understanding of the world. In this case, the answer to the Mad Hatter’s riddle is no more complicated than a raven is like a writing desk because we are creatures that need both quiet, introspective time and opportunities to sound aloud. It is not either this or that, it is both/and.

A funny thing happened while I was writing this post—one of my Writing Circle comrades wrote a piece about how the crow flies and used the very same words: both/and. We were each a little freaked out hearing the other read, but as you might imagine her piece is a very different story than mine. I invite her to share it here or I’ll link to it if she posts it on her blog, when she’s ready. Meanwhile, I’m honored to be in such good, thoughtful, creative company.

Tonight it’s a new moon—time once again to plants seeds for the cycle ahead. With much love, Rxo

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