About Me

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Santa Fe, New Mexico, United States

Saturday, December 31, 2011

Happy New Year

May you all have a year full of joy, clear vision and purpose, quiet in your hearts, peace in your life and the strength and courage to allow life to unfold whatever the circumstances may be. All my love to all of you!!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Blueness of Things

she floated with the moon at her back...

The color blue in any shade always has a quieting affect on my mind. In Feng shui they say too much blue can create depression. Perhaps it is the wide open blue of a sky that allows for expansion and wonder. Walking out of work this evening the sky reminded me of a Chagall painting. I did soften the look with an iPhone app, but the moon is real!

...The sky is blue, the earth has no blue. The ocean is the great mirror of the sky. It holds its own reserve of transparent mystery under its blue surface. Goethe says that rather than coming at us or hemming us in, blue draws us after it into the distance. Blue seems to be the colour of the infinite- an endless expanse where darkness and brightness dwell in blue. ~
John O'Donohue

Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Grounding Required At This Time

I'm searching for solid ground. Just might not be possible. Perhaps it's groundlessness from here on out. Words from Pema Chodrin, "living beautifully with uncertainty...wherever you are in the world, be where you are fully. You deserve to be here-embrace this moment.

And - Failure is not a punishment, success is not a reward; they are both ordinary occurrences.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

A List of Now

Listen, whatever it is you try to do with your life, nothing will ever dazzle you like the dreams of your body. Its spirit longing to fly while the dead-weight bones toss their dark mane and hurry back into the fields of glittering fire where everything, even the great whale, throbs with song.
Mary Oliver

a list of now
the whir of electronics on a wintry day and the tree lights lighten up the room.
lucy hackling at the mailman as he negotiates the snow.
douglas fir scent filling up the house while the shared toilet sings a melody.
be more curious, be less afraid; be less afraid of talking about things you don’t
really want to talk about. love even more. step lightly, be present when I’m walking the dog.
listen more when Ian’s speaking. have less judgment/have no judgment. smile/don’t be a sour puss.
go to an even  deeper level with love, with surrender, with acceptance, with joy, with being in love, with allowing. I hear the hourly chime, take three deep breaths and carry on. have gratitude, be grateful, know gratitude. place hand on heart/heart broken open. be even more curious, did I already say that? I mean it…it goes along with fear. don’t be afraid, what can possibly happen really…that I’ll be found out to be just as fragile and tender as everyone else on this planet? not protected, no boundaries, who can hurt me really? stay open, be open, let myself be loved, love my lover like there’s no tomorrow. love my children with abandon and joy. make images, put words together, make sense, don’t make sense. make more time for play. play with creativity, let go of what I think creativity is, what it looks like, where I’ll find it, what it feels like. look everywhere, down the street, around every corner, in the hallway down my office, in my mind, out of my mind. create, imagine, explore, decipher, demand, insist, decide/don’t decide. no right no wrong, only being only now, only love, only love, only love.

~may this time of year fill your hearts with so much light and love that you will feel it not only for one day, not just for a year, but for always~ MS

Saturday, December 17, 2011

La Vie en Rose

I am certain of nothing but the holiness of the Heart's affections and the truth of imagination. ~ John Keats

Friday, December 16, 2011

Inspiration is waiting for me...

Inspiration...she's always there...it's me who needs to simply quiet down and listen to what she can't wait to share!!!

Friday, December 9, 2011

Just Sit

Sometimes one would never know...including myself just how monkey mind this mind of mine can be and then at the end of the day after several incarnations all becomes quiet and gratitude descends upon the day.

Thursday, December 8, 2011

this spirit of now....

This time of year...this year...feels like it's more about settling in. The Christmas spirit....the season of giving...I would have to say that that "spirit" is something that has become part of my nature every day of my life. I believe it's about living from my heart; going deeper and deeper still. It's that groundless place from which all things are possible in every moment and a lifetime in every moment.

Acres bear corn and cost money.
Meadows are surrounded by barbed wire,
Terrible need and avarice laid side by side,
Everything looks wasted and closed in.

But here in my eye another order of things
Goes on living; violet ebbs away
And the purple flows on its throne, and I sing
My innocent song.

Yellow by yellow, and yellow next to red.
Cool blue turns to the color of rose.
Light and color leap from the world to world.
Arch and echo away in a surging of love.
The spirit reigns, healing all sickness,
Green sings out from newborn springs,
The world will share in freshness and meaning,
And hearts grow glad and light.
~Herman Hesse (Wandering, 1920)

(a special thanks to Ms. Papic for finding this early work of Hesses's)

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Be Curious

Be curious...about your life, your surroundings, about the people you think you don't like or don't want to get to know. Stay curious and open yourself to the  delight of what the universe has to offer!!

Monday, December 5, 2011

In SIlence We Must Wrap...

In silence we must wrap much of our life, because
it is too fine for speech.
~ Emerson

Today I was filled with a deep, silent reverie and understanding that all is well.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

Everything Else is Secondary

...most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary.-

Thursday, December 1, 2011

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Meditation in Digital Charcoal

Meditation in Digital Charcoal
My paternal grandmother, Clara Sherman, would be 127 years old were she still alive.  It wasn’t known by her grandchildren until after her passing that she was an amazing artist using charcoal as her medium.  She was raised in a small, pastoral farm community in Wisconsin after her grandparents had emigrated from Ireland. Grew up, married and raised three sons on her own after divorcing her abusive husband; something unheard of in the early 1900’s. I remember her as being a bit rough; don’t recall her smiling very much and a diehard Cubs fan. She passed away at a nursing home in Wisconsin after watching the Cubs lose another game, with my Dad in 1975.

Dad had unearthed 3 of Clara’s works, all still life; had them preserved and beautifully framed. I named the image you see here Moon River many years ago. When the 3 kids would go home for family get-togethers I would stare at the picture and quietly say, “There’s only one thing I would like from Mom & Dad, that picture from Grandma.”

The years moved forward and Moon River would find its home on different walls depending on how Mom was decorating at any given time. After Dad’s funeral we (myself and my 2 older brothers) my sister-in-law and my youngest son, set to the task of cleaning out Dad’s home for selling. And there she was…Moon River, hidden in the closet waiting for her new home.
The image had been sitting on my fireplace mantel for a few months and I’d wanted to work with the picture somehow. One night last week I took the picture, brought it into the kitchen, placed it on the table and started taking pictures with my iPhone camera; oh it felt so right…even magical. I experimented with different apps, not wanting to stray too far from the original work. It really felt like a meditation working with and exploring a work of art that had been created perhaps a hundred years ago.

One of the renditions I call “Moon Glow”, has been accepted into an iPhonography contest where 100 of the best images will be on display in an exhibit at a Soho Gallery during the holidays. What would Clara think of all of this; perhaps a bit shy and not wanting to stand out or show herself off?  I have a feeling she was like Emily Dickinson (they found 1000 poems in a drawer after her passing). I want to believe she drew these pictures for her own satisfaction and fulfillment; to take her mind off of what probably was not the easiest of lives. What an honor to take her work out of the closet and breathe new life into it. What a gift I have been given in finally finding and accepting my own creativity and recognizing the shoulders than I stand upon in my own heritage.

Thanks Clara with all my heart!

Also posted today over at Vision & Verb: a global gathering of women of this age.


Sunday, November 27, 2011

I Live My Life...

I live my life in widening circles
which spread out to encompass all things.
I may not bring the last one to completion,
but that will be my attempt.

I circle God, the ancient tower,
circling and circling for thousands of years,
and don't yet know - am I a falcon, a storm.
or an immense song?

~Rainer Maria Rilke~

Friday, November 25, 2011

Wild Geese

You do not have to be good.
You do not have to walk on your knees
for a hundred miles through the desert, repenting.
You only have to let the soft animal of your body
       love what it loves.
Tell me about despair, yours, and I will tell you mine.
Meanwhile the world goes on.
Meanwhile the sun and the clear pebbles of the rain
are moving across the landscapes,
over the prairies and the deep trees,
the mountains and the rivers.
Meanwhile the wild geese, high in the clean blue air,
are heading home again.
Whoever you are, no matter how lonely,
the world offers itself to your imagination,
calls to you like the wild geese, harsh and exciting-
over and over announcing your place
in the family of things.
~Mary Oliver

Thursday, November 24, 2011


Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life.  It turns what we have into enough, and more.  It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity.  It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.  Gratitude makes sense of our past, brings peace for today and creates a vision for tomorrow.  
~Melody Beattie

Monday, November 21, 2011

Waiting for the Amtrak train to pull in carrying my 24 year old son from a trip gone "not so good." This lovely, patient man had pulled out a chair and a book waiting for his special someone to de-train. A picture of elegance.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Let Us Not be Satisfied

Let us not be satisfied with recounting a fable of the heart; let us create its myth. Is not love, with art, our only license to overreach the human condition, to be greater, more generous, more sorrowful if need be than is the common lot? Let us be so heroically...
~Rainer Maria Rilke, 18 November 1920

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Friday, November 11, 2011

Snow Geese

The beautiful can exist at the edge precisely because it has nothing to lose and everything to give away.
~Frederick Turner

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Water Logic

Water Logic
I’ve been getting a good deal of support in the past months from lots of different folks. Come to think of it many aren’t walking in this world any longer; my Mom, my Dad, Rumi, Emily Dickinson, Steve Jobs, Joan Didion, Pema Chodrin, Melissa, Doug, Annie…and the list goes on. And I think how clever of me to have generated such a wonderful posse of support; especially now when life seems to feel so topsy-turvy. I know that many of you feel that way too so there’s no reason to go into my own boo-hoo story.

I just would like to share my gratitude. This feeling has been bringing me to my knees lately….that unbearable lightness of being. Everything feels bright and stark and so alive and fragile and precious. Is it possible to have that many feelings all at the same time? I believe (I’m afraid) so!

One of my deepest experiences has been my explosion into the world of my creative self, mostly through the use of my iPhone camera. Since June I’ve taken at least 1000 images and generated new renditions of the same image and experimenting with apps to create something completely new. This experience has really opened me up to the joy of creating and how the motivation for imagining and taking pictures has become second nature, spontaneous, a “why wouldn’t you” feeling for creating photography. So fulfilling.

And then there’s Pema Chodrin and an on-line retreat I took a few weeks ago. There she was 76, streaming live from Omega Institute in upstate New York and me sitting cozy in my warm home in New Mexico with my laptop. She spoke about her first teacher Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche, and his teaching as he referred to it as “Water Logic”. This teaching consists of three attributes to be aware of: trust, joy and holding your seat. Trust, that life will always teach you and will have a message to give you, if you are willing. Joy and appreciation, that every moment is always new and how we relate to this moment will show us how the next moment, the next day, the rest of our lives will be. And taking our seat, wherever you are in the world in this moment be fully present, be where you are embracing this time and “not exaggerating”. Taking our seat by taking responsibility (not control) of where we are.

Maybe it’s the Mayan calendar coming to an end (Pema Chodrin thinks the Mayans just ran out of stones), or my Dad’s passing and becoming a member of the Orphan’s club or putting an iPhone in my hands and watching in awe as my creative world explodes or my beautiful sons as they find their way in this world. What a potpourri of joy and love and creation and despair and fear and laughter and shear curiosity.

“Your time is limited, so don’t waste it living someone else’s life…don’t let the noise of other’s opinions drown out your own inner voice…and most important, have the courage to follow your heart and intuition. They somehow already know what you truly want to become. Everything else is secondary. ~Steve Jobs~

Cross posted over at Vision & Verb. (link on your left)

Saturday, November 5, 2011

Hope is the thing with feathers
That perches in the soul
And sings the tune without the words
And never stops - at all
~Emily Dickinson
Fall begins to fade. We had our first official snow this morning. The wind so strong, the snow was blowing sideways. And it stopped as quickly as it began. There's that feeling of the wetness cleansing the air, the ground, my mind. A prefect day.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

The Unbearable Lightness of Being

One day passes and another day comes along, and everything happens the same.  But basically, we are so afraid of the brilliance coming at us, and the sharp experience of life, that we can't even focus our eyes.
~Chogyum Trungpa Rinpoche~

Her drama was a drama not of heaviness but of lightness. What fell to her lot was not the burden but the unbearable lightness of being.
~Milan Kundera~ 

Don't let these quotations scare you. I find it comforting and a relief to finally begin to embrace the fears and anxieties that I have been pushing down for years all in the name of being in the "present moment". The present moment, does in fact include every feeling, every thought, all moments in this moment. What a lovely, juicy revelation!

Wednesday, November 2, 2011


In my grief I saw myself being held,
us all holding one another in this
incredible web of loving kindness.
Grief and love in the same place.
I felt as if my heart would burst with holding it all.

     ~A Zimbabwean Woman

Saturday, October 29, 2011

In Retreat

Generating a space of quiet, contemplation and inner reflection while taking an on-line retreat with Pema Chodrin. I thought it would be interesting to see what I create over the weekend while in this deeper place of resting and being more fully present in the now.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Take A Risk

In the world of soul, I have seldom seen anyone take a risk for growth that was not rewarded a thousand times over, for to trust to experience is to grow, to learn, to develop.

~ John O'Donohue

Shared Seasons

As we go deep into autumn the brilliance of the colors and the changes in nature are so prevalent and evident. And yet, walking in the morning sunlight it feels like the beginnings of summer; I see fresh green grass, trees whose leaves have yet to turn let alone fall to the earth, the sun is warm on my face. It is the in-between of the season.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Meditation on the Form/The Brahma Viharas


           Mudita-Sympathetic Joy



Bending Branch


Aspen Bark



Buddha Applied

Buddha Applied

A Moment in Time

A Moment in Time

Silence Series

Silence Series

Silence Series

Silence Series

Street Photography

Street Photography

Train Graffitti


Faces From the World

Faces From the World


Folk Art Festival