Montana Wolf

Monday, December 5, 2011

Turvy Topsy

Up at 5:00, I open the slider door and step onto the deck. The moon has long set; the sky is the ebony dark of new birth. Pleiades, the Seven Doves, hangs in the west. The Goddess' kite, I have long depended on her for a  keen word or two to make my mind's eye blink. The seven degree morn pushes me around as I notice the Big Dipper straight above, upside down. As if he's pouring, showering my soul with ... ?  I spread my arms, open to the rain of that-I-can-not-name.

I return to the ember-red wood stove where an bare wood book case with rusty nail heads is set to dry. Several weeks ago, in the midst of autumn's peak, Wood Tick and I discovered an old growth larch and ponderosa (they call them yellow pine up here) sanctuary.  Remnants of an old hunting camp were strewn about, and in the middle of the camp was a weathered, two-shelf bookcase. A strange thing to find near a meat pole. It could have stored beans, knives and dish soap. Or perhaps it held tablets from the likes of a Montana-Thoreau. I'd been thinking about that book case ever since; finally realized it wasn't going to sprout legs and walk several miles to my door. A few days ago we drove along icy two-tracks to pick it up. By then it was frozen to the ground and layered with snow. We nudged it loose and awkwardly carried it to the truck across slick, chunky snow. Once thawed, it will begin to tell tales. The great gray owl that perched on a larch limb; the wolf that loped towards a snowshoe hare.

My soul responds to the isolation, beauty, wild and cocoon of winter as it did many years ago at "Dancing Raven" in Colorado's San Luis Valley; my solo five year mountain retreat. (Living on the Spine: A Woman's Life in the Sangre de Cristo Mountains. I have copies of that. My other book, NM Sanctuaries, Retreats and Sacred Places is sold out. I had to order one used from Amazon a couple of weeks ago. How do you spell irony?) I unfold my writing life in Wood Tick's extra room. He has gifted me the space, yet I feel more strung out than ever. La Perla is covered with a sheet of plastic. My few worldly possessions are stowed away in Colorado where a girlfriend (read: savior) recently boxed and sent my snowshoes and gators cuz here I sit with my snorkel gear, evidence of earlier plans for winter south of the border.

Plans knocked askew. I am not alone. I take the pulse of the world, as well as that of friends far and near, and the word metamorphosis comes to mind. No matter how settled one is, we are called in this spiral time to receive. To ferret and hold dear the few things essential to the soul. This is what I know. It feels right to stand still and dip my hands in warm dishwater. It is essential to walk to the beaver pond at nightfall, take note of the progression of wood chips and slides, the ever-changing coat of ice on the dam. Today I will write an article on wildlife watching. In days to come I will organize my Africa photos and post them onto Flickr. When that bookcase dries of dampness I will carry it into my study.

Winter's dictate: be worthy of the holy moment; step into the stony darkness and raise my face to the Big Dipper's effervescent shower.


I love to receive and respond to your comments. Please try. Many readers continue to have problems posting. For that I apologize.
Heart, Christina


  1. I love the way your words cause me to consider things that would otherwise go unconsidered. I thank you for that.

  2. It will be nice to look at this area through another set of eyes..

  3. Alas, so many of our companions will never feel warmth in the cold, they will neither be ready for nor deserving of the holy moment !

  4. Hmmm, the story that lies between a snorkel and a bookcase. Love your stories.

  5. From Jyoti: Tried to post...maybe it is the post...

    I stand with you and the Pleiades in that stark nighttime. Love the images and the writing...thanks...