Brian Doyle says that religion, and religious practice-- like attending a specific church say-- is the boat believers and seekers choose to carry us over the sea of faith. It's harder to swim that alone, and even more challenging to do it without any kind of map or compass.
Thanks to poet Emily Wall and the Skagway writers symposium last week, I'm learning to write haikus. You know, those short poems with typically-- and best to begin with this form-- three lines of five, seven, and five syllables each that you compose by counting on your fingers while tapping the beat? She said it is best to begin with two lines of images, and add a twist-- a thought, an idea, a question, or even a unexpected image in the final line.
I have been full steam ahead on the garden, family, and preparing to head to Skagway for the Northwords Writers Symposium (today thru Saturday.) I'll hop a fast ferry from the cruise ship dock right after I do my reading on the ship from 4-5. I haven't packed. I planted potatoes instead. And I went bike riding and fell this morning. I know, don't gasp. I'm fine.
"God, or the gods, are invisible, quite understandable. But holiness is visible, entirely." -- Mary Oliver
This is from Mary Oliver's new book of poems, Felicity. (This is how I find Sunday's Thought: with a cup of coffee, in my pajamas, on Sunday morning, browsing through books with goods thoughts in them, or something I underlined, or a page turned over, or sometimes, when I'm organized, which is rare, it's on a note that I made to myself after church or while reading, that says "good Sunday Thought SAVE!')
Lani Hotch from Klukwan, says that an elder once told her that that the ovoids you see in all Tlingit art are the eyes of God, or "the ever present spirit". Here's the big question-- which came first, the spirit or the art? Or are they perhaps the same? As Anne Lamott writes about why art-- literary or otherwise matters -- and why we keep creating it, "because of the spirit... because of the heart." This morning I spoke to a friend who is back in the light following a dark spell. She looked great, I told her.
As you can see, we have been updating the site, doing a little spring cleaning, and making it mobile-friendly. It looks different, and I'm figuring out how to use it, and may tweak it a bit more, but what's here is still pretty much the same. I hope you like it. (I prefer plain-ish, and easy to navigate, and I trust this will be.)
That's right, Haines own Nori Nash (well, her parents and siblings still live here, and she is a Haines High grad.. I think that counts) otherwise known as Avon romance author Lenora Bell, has just published How the Duke was Won, a real bodice ripper, to great critical acclaim-- including this review from her elderly aunt Carol, whose husband is in the Pioneer Home in Sitka: "It made me miss Roy." I'm waiting until The Babbling Book store here in Haines has some in, so I haven't read it yet, but here are all the details from Nori's blog.
This morning it was 37 when we got on our bikes to ride out the road, but it was so beautiful-- all sunshine and blue and green- the rain of the last few days has made the whole world leafy, and it smells like new cut grass, wood smoke, and at the hooligan pits at 4 mile, fermenting fish. We looped through the Fort, and saw my sister's car down by the beach and figured she was swimming (she does that-- dips in Portage Cove year 'round. Me? Never.)