Archives For tree

Across the Sea

Mary Liz Ingram —  September 18, 2016 — 1 Comment

We met a man in Santorini who told me that when you come expecting good things, with a good heart and good intention, you will find goodness returned to you. When your eyes are open and your heart is willing, you see magic things all around you. You notice the hummingbird moth on the yellow thistle, the feathers on the ground, the adventure to be found.

Be a child with wide open eyes, welcoming whatever arises. -Sister Dang Nghiem

At the end of July, my husband and I were so grateful to be able to travel to the Mediterranean, journeying through Greece, Montenegro and Italy. Through the whirlwind of experiences, I watched for the twisting of the olive trees, the constellations in the sky, the plants I knew and those that I had never seen. We put our feet through the black pebbles on the Aegean coast, rode a Moped through low-growing vineyards, climbed the Acropolis in Athens, wandered through dark catacombs, ran around Rome at night. I watched the moon over the waves and knew each experience was shaping me a little bit more.

Traveling with a great group of people, we collectively reflected upon our days in the Mediterranean. I wrote in my journal on the last night in Rome, sifting through images and snatches of thoughts I had collected:

I’ve been amazed, felt filled with adventure and life, I have been worn and tired, I have felt relaxed and at peace. I have wondered after the wisp that catches my attention every now and then. I have tried to be present, at home with every step. It has been impressed upon me even more deeply than before that I am a part of the whole of creation – that the bee, the bird, the sea, the sky, the trees, the air, the land, the past, the steps and people are all so interconnected – we are a family on earth, and each place is our home. The mystery of the sea and sky and life itself seems even deeper and more mysterious and wonderfully complex than before. I am ever more convinced that love must grow, that unity and patience and an embrace of the other is necessary and compelling. There is no other way. We are all one – all one. Brother, sister all around from the people who smile to the people who push you – the bee on my plate, the cats on the pillars, the trees twisting and reaching, the sparkling sea and stars that guide. Unified as one body, God is in the wild places, all around and in and through.

Now that we are back home, I try to keep that spirit with me. The open eyes, the sense of adventure, the unity and connectedness of life on this earth. During our travels, I drew pieces and places that I collected each day, from little flowers to towering columns. I like to flip through them and remember.

I am not the same, having seen the moon shine on the other side of the world. -Mary Anne Radmacher

 

Winter Trees

Mary Liz Ingram —  February 23, 2015 — Leave a comment

Everyday, lately, I watch the winter trees. Some days they are dancing in the wind, some days they stand still as statues. Often they are mobbed with chattering black birds.

The dark, bare branches look like ink against the gray sky, so I drew them. I let the ink drip down the crinkled paper, as I held it upside down. When I turned it right side up, I found a tree:

Winter Tree, ink

Winter Tree, ink

Today, the trees were rain-soaked and slowly moving, here and there. I wrote down a little poem while I sipped my coffee:

The trees stand

like frozen sentinels

drenched by a cold winter rain.

They watch me with

arms spread high and wide

daring me to hear them

to feel the bare morning

to come out of my house

and reach to the sky.

Wet to the bone

they tease me

as I sit in my warm chair

wrapped and snug.

With waving wet arms

they tell me to come out and see

come out and dance

and feel the rain.

Paper Shoes, charcoal & conte sketch

Paper Shoes, charcoal & conte sketch

On the sixth day of Christmas sketches…

Today was a good family day… much needed in the midst of mourning over “inhumanity” and the remembrance of little children near and far whose lives have been stolen. My emotions, as so many others are experiencing, have swung like a pendulum all day: I picture the faces of frightened children and I weep; I sing Christmas songs with my children and feel warm; I think of the children who won’t ever have another Christmas and I hurt; I choose gifts for my children and I feel proud of who they are.

Tonight we loaded up to finally get our Christmas tree. As we entered the garden section of a nearly-deserted Lowe’s, curious attention and questions were directed at my son.

That would be because he was shuffling along in paper shoes.

Apparently, we didn’t notice him get into the car without real shoes, so his homemade paper and blue painters-tape shoes it was. We bought a slightly scraggly clearance tree, strapped it to the top of our Jeep, and the kids sang “We Three Kings” loudly all the way home.

It’s tempting to be paralyzed by fear, to want to tuck my children away, like eggs in a nest, sheltering them from harm. But that’s not living. Living is wearing paper shoes because you want to, singing loudly, and laughing at your Christmas tree…

living in love, not in fear.

“I never thought it was such a bad little tree. It’s not bad at all, really. Maybe it just needs a little love. ” -Linus, A Charlie Brown Christmas

“All you need is love. Love is all you need.”

-the Beatles
6 Geese-a-Laying

6 Geese-a-Laying