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tiny mica miracles. [two artists tuesday]

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it doesn’t matter.  anything could be happening.  any fire.  any storm.  and then, like glitter, the tiny miracles show up.  the mica.  and for a moment or two we are standing still, our focus re-directed.

this quote – “life is a series of thousands of tiny miracles…” (mike greenberg) – appeared in my facebook feed, re-posting from a decade ago.  a gentle tap, a hey-remember-this.

the post below (#TheMicaList) is from not-quite-a-year ago, published on my 60th birthday.  as i rapidly approach 61, i find that re-reading it reminds me.  to everything there is a season.  and a time to see mica.

we are all visitors copy

dear Life,

my sweet momma would often call me just as the time i was born would pass on my birthday. at the end of her life she didn’t do this anymore but i always remembered anyway. mid-morning i would know that this was the moment i arrived at this place, this was the beginning of my passing through, the time of my visiting.

today, this very morning, it was 60 years ago that i joined the rest of this good earth on its journey around the sun. spinning, spinning. every day.

it wasn’t long till i realized – as an adult – that we spin our wheels constantly to get to some unknown place we can’t necessarily define or find. we search and spin faster, out of mission, out of passion, out of frustration, loss, a feeling of no value or a sense of lostness. we spin. we seek. we try to accomplish. we try to make our mark. we try to finish. we try to start. we leave scarred rubber skids of emotions on the road behind us; we burn out with abrupt, unexpected turns, we break, wearing out. spinning. spinning. from one thing to another, our schedules full of busy things to do. often, days a repetition of the previous day. every day full. full of spinning. but we are still seeking. life is sometimes what we expected. life is sometimes not what we expected. and that makes us spin faster, our core dizzying with exhaustion.

the simplest gifts – the air, clear cool water to drink, the mountaintop exhilaration of parenthood, hand-holding love, the ephemeral seconds of self-actualizing accomplishment, the sun on our faces…we have images stored in our mind’s eye like photographs in an old-fashioned slide show, at any time ready for us to ponder. but often-times we fail to linger in these exquisite simplicities. the next thing calls.

this morning, as i stare at 60 – which, as i have mentioned, is kind of a significant number for me – i realize that everything i write about or compose about or talk about or hold close in my heart is about these simplest things, the pared-down stuff, the old boots on the trail – not fancy but steadfast, not brand new but muddied up with real. in our day-to-day-ness i/we don’t always see IT. the one thing. there is something -truly- that stands out each day in those sedimentary layers of our lives. it is the thing that makes the rest of the day pale in comparison. in all its simple glory, the one true moment that makes us realize that we are living, breathing, ever-full in our spinning world. the thing that connects us to the world. the shiny thing. the mica. that tiny irregular piece of glittering mica in the layers and veneers of life. the thing to hold onto with all our might.

that tiny glitter of mica. mica nestles itself within a bigger rock, a somewhat plain rock – igneous, metamorphic, sedimentary ordinariness. not pinnacle, it is found within the bigger context. sometimes harder to find, harder to notice, but there. and it makes the day our day, different than any other. it is the reason we have learned or grown that day. it is the reason we have laughed that day. it is the reason we have picked ourselves up off the floor that day. it is the reason we have breathed that day.

and now, at 60, i resolve to see, to collect those pieces of glitter. not in an old wooden box or a beat-up vintage suitcase, but, simply, since they are moments in time, in a tiny notebook or on my calendar. join me in #TheMicaList if you wish. as we wander and wonder through it is our job, in our very best interest, to notice the finest shimmering dust, the mica in the rock, the glitter in our world.

with all the reminders around us to remember-remember-remember that every day counts, we get lost in our own spinning stories, narratives of many strata. i know that in the midnight of the days i look back on the hours of light and darkness in which i moved about and remember one moment – one moment – be it a fleetingly brief, elusive, often evanescent moment of purity, the tiniest snippet of conversation, belly-laugh humor, raw learning, naked truth, intense love – those are the days i know – i remember – i am alive.

my visit to this physical place is not limitless. but each glitter of mica is a star in a limitless sky of glitter, a milky way of the times that make me uniquely me and you uniquely you, a stockpile of priceless relics. my time stretches back and stretches ahead, a floating silken thread of shiny. it’s all a mysterious journey.

and i am grateful.

kerri

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read DAVID’s thoughts this TWO ARTISTS TUESDAY

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“every storm runs out of rain.” [merely-a-thought monday]

every storm runs out copy

“i want to know if you will stand in the center of the fire with me and not shrink back.” (oriah mountain dreamer)

in the middle.  of the storm.  of the fire.  the stallion of human nature rears up; we push back; we flail hooves with words, with rebuttals, with defenses.  and the circumstances that have created the storm or the arsonists who have built the fire prevail, deaf, obstinate, bullheadedly dogged.

after a bout, we raise our beaten heads up, panting.  and we silently stand.  we slow our breathing down, and begin to calmly wait, deliberately, intentionally trust that the storm will pass, the fire will go to ash.

for “every storm runs out of rain.” (maya angelou)

and we will come out on the other side.  joan once told me that the only way to the other side is through.  those wise words have echoed in my heart time and again.  there is no circumventing, no avoidance.  the fires, the storms will come.  no matter.  and although we will live in them longer than we wish, longer than we ought, they will not last forever.

“this too shall pass.” (my sweet momma)

the pain will subside, even a tiny bit.  the angry words will run out.  the crisis will start its labored, interminable return to zero axis.  good will begin to tilt the seesaw.  the sun will rise.  next will come.  and we will have survived a worst day, worst fire, worst storm.  we will still be breathing, having passed through hyperventilating, catching our breath, slowing our pulse.  we will be standing.

” i don’t care what’s in front of me or what’s behind me; i just wanna stop the wheel and stand still…” (phil vassar, ‘stand still’)

and we will be in this moment, this one we won’t ever get back.  the fire, the storm attempt to rob us of these very seconds, to draw the breath from our ashy-rain-filled hearts.  but we stand still.  we know it will pass.  we know that every storm runs out of rain.

read DAVID’s thoughts this MERELY-A-THOUGHT MONDAY

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“don’t try to get it over with.” [merely-a-thought monday]

dont try to get it over with

a dime.  if i had a dime for every time i heard, “is this you?” as i answered the phone i would possibly be a rich girl.  i am a rich girl, nevertheless, simply because of the utterance of those words.  a dime for every lifeline.

in the craziest time of life, when i was reeling, hearing the voice of my dear friend scordskiii on the phone was a lifesaver.  it was a crazy time of life for him as well, profoundly devastating.  but we weren’t alone in our individual fires.  they raged about us and we each held the other safe, just away from the flames.  were i to have gotten that era over with as-fast-as-possible i would have missed it, this symbiotic exchange of breathing-together, of MAKING-it-through not getting-through-it.  conversations of laughter, singing, telling stories, pondering, arguing points, more laughter.  hours upon hours while he drove in some other part of the country and i sat up all night keeping him company or i drove way-far-away from where he was and he talked me through what i most needed to process at the time.  or we just sat still, in our own corner of the world, talking.  really really talking.  hours of review, of planning, of sorting, of truth, of fear, of ranting.  and laughter.  i have no idea what i would have done without him.  and, despite the pain and the fallout and the ash that (still) remains after the smoldering fire was finally doused, i am grateful to the universe for making me walk through it.  for making me be present.  for not keeping me from the lessons, for giving me reasons to not try to get it over with.  it was an extraordinary time.  the lifeline he extended to me is a thread that will never be broken.  despite his ensuing here-gone-here-gone-ness, his presence will always be a part of what has woven into what looks like me, what is me.

the fire.  who are the people who will stand in the fire with you, will stand still with you, will unconditionally love you, will be your guardian, your buoy, your champion, your lifeline?  how many dimes would you have by now?

read DAVID’S thoughts this MERELY-A-THOUGHT MONDAY

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the pink. [k.s. friday]

inasplitsecond song

there is a moment when the sky turns a delicious shade of pink as the sun sets in the western horizon.  each beyond-the-crayon-box-color doesn’t last long; they morph into the next color and then the next.  each second, as you watch, counts.

there is a moment when before-night turns into after-day.  crossing the pink.

“live in the present/grab onto this time/don’t look behind you/you gotta walk that thin line/of the future and the past/it’s all within your grasp/that second could come way too fast”

there is a moment – one that probably occurs multiple times a day – when you can choose how to react to things.  you can linger in the not-taking-it-personally-they-are-hurting-you-not-because-you-are-you-but-because-they-are-them zone or you can step over the line and bite back.  crossing the pink.  everyone in relationship recognizes this.  any relationship, be it spouse-spouse, significant others, parent-child, child-parent, colleagues, supervisor-employee, employee-supervisor, drivers stuck in traffic, customer-customer service rep, strangers in a long grocery line.  not biting back doesn’t render you powerless; instead, in the hardly-ever-easy not-taking-it-personally, it aids in your health and well-being.  you choose.  crossing the pink.

“you look in the mirror/today’s world stares back”

there is a moment – a split second – when you stand still and see all that was behind, all that is here and now.  it is impossible to see all that is possible, for surely if you were back many pink crossings ago you would not have imagined the now of now.

and so, this split second should tell us that we have no idea, that our imaginings of the future are both wildly over-feared and inconceivably understated, that with each split-second breath we take, we cross the pink into another split-second that is filled with hope of new.  but sheesh, we are human and we are worried, fearful, guilt-ridden, persistently trying to figure out what we did wrong to elicit ‘such a response’, repeatedly weighing everything, sorting, feeling powerless.

what if we stayed in the moment of delicious pink, watching the sun promise rest and a new day.

“take it slow/don’t let this moment go/it’s here and it’s now/use this gift somehow”

read more about this song IN A SPLIT SECOND here

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read DAVID’S thoughts this K.S. FRIDAY

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IN A SPLIT SECOND from AS SURE AS THE SUN ©️ 2002 kerri sherwood

 


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stand still. earth interrupted IV. [d.r. thursday]

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EARTH INTERRUPTED IV mixed media 48″ x 36″

“the river is moving is moving and i am still i am still.  the challenge of the seeker is not to be separate from that you seek.  and sometimes as kdot said you have to stand still stand still and let what you seek catch up to you.”

stand still stand still.  difficult.  every single cell vibrates with the anticipation of movement movement.  every single atom.  every single frequency.  every single.  but to stand still.  in it all.  and wait.  we are here.  we are the past.  we are the future.  it is all the same.  we stand in it.  some of it fades away and some of it catches up.  all while we stand.  and tremble in not-knowing.  and quiver with suspense.

read DAVID’S thoughts this D.R. THURSDAY

click here to view/purchase this painting on david’s gallery site

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EARTH INTERRUPTED IV ©️ 2018 david robinson


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connected. [k.s. friday]

connected songbox

“wherever you are, that’s where i will be…” the framed needlepoint hangs next to my dresser.  every day i see this message, a message of unrelenting connectedness.

life has a way of taking us near and far, to and from the people we love. children grow and fly free.  siblings scatter around the world in pursuit of their dreams.  parents age and leave this plane of existence.  friends are close; friends move far away.   i can speak for those of us who are particularly extra-ordinarily thready – these are tough challenges.

on the album RELEASED FROM THE HEART, this piece CONNECTED follows the piece i composed called MISSING.  it was a self-reminder when i placed the track order that way.  the connection between us eclipses the missing.  our connections guarantee that they will surpass missing and wrap around us like soft blankets right out of the dryer.  we have to just stand still and feel them.

we had the blissful opportunity of being together with both My Girl and My Boy under the same roof at the same time for a period of days.  my annoying-mother-ness took lots of pictures and memorized moments, from hilariously funny to touchingly heart-full to painfully real.  the first moments i saw each of them deplane at the tiny island airport will be indelibly sketched in my mind.  pure joy.

we are connected.  despite our proximity, despite distance from one visit to the next, despite time between, we are connected.  i will – comfortingly, reassuringly, lovingly, supportively, annoyingly, and yes, unrelentingly – always be there for them.  always.

that is what connection is.

download RELEASED FROM THE HEART on iTUNES or CDBaby

read DAVID’S thoughts this K.S. FRIDAY

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CONNECTED from RELEASED FROM THE HEART ©️ 1995 kerri sherwood


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are we mindful? [d.r. thursday]

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THE SHADOW OF DIVISION

there are small pieces, corners, smidges of david’s paintings that stand out for me.  a slice of color or pattern, the morsel, like THE SHADOW OF DIVISION, catches my eye.  no less than the painting in its entirety, just differently.

earth interrupted IV and the words he penned on the canvas: let what you seek catch up to you…stand still, stand still…  earth, suspended in the midst of a color palette.

the people of this good earth – ever-seekers…surrounded by color…choices…in a moving river…vulnerable…standing still…rotating, rotating. are we mindful?

this good earth – this fragile fragmented globe…its colors…its rivers…its steadiness…its rotation…its vulnerability.  are we mindful?

EarthInterrupted4 copy

EARTH INTERRUPTED IV mixed media 48″ x 36″

read DAVID’S thoughts on this D.R. THURSDAY

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SHADOW OF DIVISION/EARTH INTERRUPTED IV ©️ 2018 david robinson, kerri sherwood


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autumn hillside night. [d.r.thursday]

Autumn Hillside Night

i can feel the sun over my shoulder, low to the horizon, warming the back of my head.  in front of me the field of cut-grain takes on the color of the sunset and the sky darkens in answer to the summoning of nightfall.  the color is intense; the darkness is perforated by the suggestion of clouds, maybe stars…maybe it’s too early for that, i wonder.  i want to walk up the hill to see what color might lay there, what color might be beyond that which i can see right now.  but i stay still.  and listen to the crickets in the grass, the cicadas in the small stand of trees behind me, the sigh of day’s end.

extracted from david’s painting WE WATCH THE SETTING SUN and then a time-of-day change from the morsel AUTUMN HILLSIDE, this is AUTUMN HILLSIDE NIGHT.

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read DAVID’S thoughts on this D.R. THURSDAY

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autumn hillside/autumn hillside night/we watch the setting sun ©️ 2018 david robinson & kerri sherwood

 

 

 

 


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stand still.

last night at the lenten service pTom spoke about a wisdom that had touched and stayed with him through the years. i found it profound in its simplicity and wrote it down when we got home after rehearsals.

“don’t just do something. stand there.”

mmm. how often i feel compelled to ‘do something’. someone i used to know often said (in moments of impatience), “do something. anything. even if it’s wrong.”

doing something avoids sitting IN it, whatever IT is. it avoids being in the time of sorrow, the time of grief, the time of confusion, the time of anger. it allows you to step out of the moment. it gives you permission to step out of the moment. it gives you excuses (albeit well-intentioned) for not being in the moment.

now maybe that is a good thing, sometimes. those moments you know that it will only serve you poorly to stay in the frustration, stay in the anger, stay in the weirdness of an off-moment. those moments may be only asking for trouble and moving into the Next is healthier. but staying in the strife, in the sadness, in the confusion also gives you a chance to feel it. to maybe try and sort it. i am guilty of trying, sometimes, to sort too much. the perils of being emotional, being mushy. too empathic at times, it is hard for me to separate what i am feeling from what someone else is feeling that i am picking up. i am given to wanting to fix moments like that.

but i’ve learned i’d rather sit with someone in their moment than exit the building when they need someone else to be there. it’s not in my saying-something. it’s in my being-there. and i’m not ego-centric enough to think that it’s ME being there…it’s SOMEONE being there. another person. someone who thinks and feels and can hold a hand and just be quiet.

phil vassar has a song called “stand still”…i love this. (and…side-note…it’s wonderful to dance to). “stand still. i’m right where i wanna be…holding you in the middle of the moment of my life. the way i feel i don’t care what’s in front of me or what’s behind. i just wanna stop the wheel and stand still.”

in Now. standing there. not doing anything. just being. what better gift can we give to people? to ourselves? my favorite moments are not the big ones. they are the teeny ones where i feel present. where i get this huge rush of happy or satisfied or intense sadness or enormous gratitude. where i catch my breath. where the world stops for a second (even though it doesn’t) and reminds me that i am here. right now. living this second. hopefully doing the best i can. always learning. always growing. always feeling the presence of God and this universe full of everything we can count on and nothing we can count on. always held in grace.

heidi quoted to me this morning from a compendium inc. book, “scientists have discovered that there is no limit to your amazingness.”(not verbatim)

no limit. to amazingness. yours and what you bring. to the amazingness of the moment. a moment standing still in a giant spectrum of possible emotion.

“i just wanna stop the wheel and stand still.”

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