Away and Towards

more than ever we need people willing to pause and listen, to open their hearts to what is uncomfortable, and to hold space and attention until the new thing emerges

~ Christine Valtners Paintner

Every so often, mainly on a Sunday, I think about writing something here. It can’t be that hard I think: just a title, a photograph, some words. A way back in, opening the door, back into your own space.

Sometimes I find a title, and sometimes a photo, and sometimes the fragments of some words, but even so, I don’t get beyond.

It’s something to do with the seeming size of the task, to find something worth saying, a practice worth practicing in the face of all the… the sheer weight of all the stuff that’s going on out there, day in, day out, relentless, remorseless.

It’s something to do with the shininess of the modern web, its gloss and promise. I miss the scruffiness of the human web I used to know, the home-made sites, the people sharing words and worlds without pretence at knowing.

Yet still in the turning away from so many things I do not wish to list, still there is a turning towards even if the shape of the new thing is unknown.

It’s not (for me) Art, or Writing, or Photography, but still something in this space between the lines that blogging offered / offers: unpolished, not knowing, open, human, connecting, here.

I fear I am not close to finding half the words I wish to, but also do not wish to let another Sunday pass away without some claiming back of space, some way of saying that even as we turn away and further keep on turning – we can still turn towards: unpolished, unknowing, open, human, here.

With thanks to Christine at the Abbey of the Arts for sharing ‘Mystical Hope and the New Thing‘ including the reminder to keep practicing, together and the nudge to me to keep going.

6 American Sentences from July

a pine above the car park first the male and then the female blackbird

cyclists in lycra all along the towpath the scent of cow parsley

late sunlight on the surface of the canal the splash of a swallow

red spots on a yellow leaf beside the bramble flowers, lit by sun

bird seed, pigeons and a pair of jackdaws in Bathgate, Sunday morning

Whitburn Cross roadworks again and again the swoop of a house martin

13 July reflections

a day rich with summer
I fear the paleness of my offering:
the downy feathers of a fledging magpie,
a flock of starlings swooping flight,
the flatness of a rabbit’s ears, watchful as I pass,
late afternoon sun on the lines of farm worked fields,
teenage laughter hunting a football on the workplace roof,
the wayside splashed with purple, the season of self-heal:

was this really all there was?

all day
this richness
this all that there was