Another Green Sign That Spring Is Yet To Come

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These are narcissus shoots, bulbs that I bought last Spring of 2015, at the time planted in tiny stones inside a pretty glass container.  The plump shoots were close to blooming when I bought them, and the whole effect of luscious shoots+planted in tiny stones+ inside a clear glass jar was a sirens song I could not resist.  I kept them for many weeks, even long past their gorgeous bloom, cutting off the tops so that I would still have a bounty of green inside a clear glass jar.  I kept cutting off the tops, and the plants grew smaller and smaller until I finally had to admit they were done.  Then I the put the whole plant outside, intending to deal with it later, but never did.  The root system had grown quite a ways by the time I got around to it, something that was clearly visual in the jar, and not so attractive to look at.  I finally pulled the bulbs out, cut off the roots and left them on my outdoor deck, again with the intention of planting them.  By the time I discovered them many months later I assumed they were ruined.  And then I forgot about them.

Until yesterday.

It has been raining here for several days now, our yard a mess of weeds more than we’ve ever seen since we’ve lived in this house of almost 3 years.   As I glanced outside yesterday, I saw on our picnic table a flower pot completely full of water, 6 green stalks popping through the glassy top.  I stared for a minute and then it hit me:  the narcissus!  They had not died!  In fact, they had gloriously gone on, despite my abandonment of them.  One of the bulbs had fully rotted, but the rest were well alive.  Here they all are, re-potted:

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Another bountiful sign for Spring.  Another sign that Imbolc is approaching, the time of year where the light shines longer in a 24 hour period.  The time of preparation for birth, the time of emergence.  As the light grows, so does the seed.  Light is the nourishment that feeds the seed to grow roots, veins, shoots, buds, and flowers.  It invades every cell of a plant, with the outcome a spectacular beauty provided to every sense a human can possess.  I freely admit I am already craving Spring.  I smell it in the air and the linger of water that clings to the leaves, a faint mix of dead with the newest forms of life; tiny buds I can palpate with my finger, little green leaves poking out the tiniest curl.  They are everywhere in my yard.  Some I can see, some I cannot.  The rain has helped my plants look more lush than I’ve ever seen them.

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In this time when I find life to be kicking me in the behind, I can sit with these gorgeous shoots and know that Spring is near.  That the time of rebirth is imminent.  I can’t wait until it is more underway, the first of my roses giving gorgeous blooms with scent that makes me swoon.  Too deepen with my roses, knowing that I am Their Keeper, the holder of Their frequency and magic.  Roses are the ultimate Love.  While I am not yet there (feeling ultimate love that is), I know this is so.

Blessings to New Life  🙂

April Aronoff

Photography By April Aronoff

 

To The Muse

IMG_3737I suddenly realize that I have been seeking sources of inspiration in the world.  I just finished reading Find A Way, by Diana Nyad, the story of a 64 year old marathon swimmer who swan from Cuba to Florida, and I just received in the mail Aging Artfully by Amy Gorman: 12 Profiles of Visual & Performing Women Aged 85-105.  These women are giving me hope, stirring my curiousity, and helping me dig deep within my soul to see what I am made of.

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I am going to be seeing Allison’s family this Friday eve.  I haven’t seen them since the funeral.  In texting with her husband and partner of 26 years, 26 years that he and I have known each other as well (he and I met 3 months into their relationship),  I am suddenly awash in grief and love.  I am so excited to see them!  Yet my heart is bursting.  They will all remind me of Allison, from looks to mannerisms to time and history together.  This is both a blessing and a moment to breath.  I will let these moments be my source of inspiration!

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April Aronoff

Photography by April Aronoff

 

Chronicling Grief

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I am sitting across from my new rose bush, in all its glory.  A total of 6, big, vibrant blooms are opened fully.  A deep, fruity fragrance emits from each bloom.  It’s a glorious site indeed, one I am finding very soothing.

My friend passed yesterday.  I knew it was coming for some time, and now link the extra emotion that I felt last week with her passing.  Some part of me was completely in touch with the course of events, although the rest of me didn’t know.  The night before she passed I dreamt my sister came to me and told me it had happened.  I initially didn’t think it anything more than anxiety, but than a few hours later it occurred to me that maybe the dream was divine.  And so it was.

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And now I’m here.  The same old place I have found myself many times past.   A deep, deep well of grief, pooled in the center of my heart chakra, radiating up to my throat and down to my solar plexus.  It’s both deep and spiraling, like a vortex.  It wants bigger release than I have offered, but I know this will change soon (I may end up screaming in my own damn house, who cares who hears!).  It feels utterly overwhelming and scary, like the high point of a wave, until a stronger, nurturing part of me swoops in to do damage control and the wave goes down.  I have also had some good friends reach out, those who know how much she meant to me.  And now it’s time I talked about that.

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Allison, I’m really going to miss you.  We have known each other since 10th grade, when in English Lit class you leaned in, eye-brows raised as you read my flouncy writing on the cover of my folder, Women Hold Up Half The Sky.  You said, “Oh, what’s that?” and in my response a friendship was born.

You and I were some of the youngest feminists at the time.  We followed the news and read the books and were willing to stand up for our beliefs around anyone who challenged.  We were also great philosophers, delving into Richard Back and our ability to live beyond the appearance of limits.  You introduced me to astral projection, and were always better at it than me.  We would spend long hours talking about these subjects.  It’s what drew us together, this depth of life.

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Then we didn’t talk about this stuff anymore and it became clear that you and I felt differently.  But it didn’t matter, we had other interests that kept us tight.  Even when our lives began to diverge in the craziest of ways, we kept our friendship alive.  And it never occurred to me in all these years, to ask what changed for you from Richard Back to now.  About spirituality I mean.  I would’ve loved to know.  But it was a touchy subject and I can see why I did not bring it up.

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Allison, you are the warmest, most generous, gracious person I know.  You showed me how to reach out to others with open arms and an open family.  Your love of detail and decorating, vacillating at times to the point of nuttiness, I adore, and your magical skills of transformation I admire.  We have had our moments and have had some down and out fights that involved yelling.  But we always came back together in friendship.

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You have been a constant in my life since I was a teen.  It’s going to be hard to reinvent myself without you physically in my world, but I guess that’s part of healing.  We will always be connected and I will always think of you.  I will do my best to be a good friend to your husband and 2 boys, that our families be close.  And I will try to honor you and the example you gave me.  Reach out, with open arms.  Another will receive you.  You never questioned this.  It’s just the way it was.

Allison, I send you many blessings.  May your journey be filled with love and light 🙂

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April Aronoff

Photography By April Aronoff

Craving Release

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This has been a sucky week, beginning and ending with heavy heart pain, anxiety, and low energy.  It is clear I am going to have to move through this.  To hold myself to my realizations, such as more downtime and more self -care.  I also need more support.  My friend of 30 years will be gone soon.  I have a lot of feelings around our relationship that I am only just acknowledging.

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I crave Release, to howl, scream and cry.  To let the sadness and grief flow through me freely.  To dissolve and clear what I do not need.  I think of the Kali ceremony I participated in almost 2 years ago.  Such wailing and tears.  I unleashed buckets of deep, dark sludge that night.  That is what I need now.

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And with my intention, so it is.

April Aronoff

Photography By April Aronoff

A Little Musing On Life

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As I walk through the darkness at this time on my path,

a time where work, partnership, family and tribe

converge in the realms of death, creation and rebirth,

I am struck by the potency of that which I call life.

I sit on the cusp of grasping true love,

such that each day is a gift of amazing unfolding.

Each of us deserves a life of fulfillment,

one that includes love, creativity, family and tribe.

I am standing at the edge of awareness

and can see across the landscape

the deepest connections possible in life.

I am breathing, breathing, endlessly breathing,

holding my heart steady and my feet heavy,

while layers upon layers are shredding within me.

For without death of that which drains,

there is no creation, no rebirth.

I am endlessly shedding like the plants in my garden,

leaves yellowing and crisply falling,

disintegrating into the life cycle of life and death.

It is hard and my heart is breaking,

people are dying and relationships are struggling,

negative patterns are slowly dissolving,

yet I taste the sweetness of divine connection,

the gift that Knowing brings in Her arms.

To strip, molt, shed and compost,

to embrace your essence and bring it out in the world,

whether it be our greatest joy or darkest challenge,

Knowing is the greatest gift we can give.

And so it is.

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April Aronoff

Photography by April Aronoff