Equinox Birthday.

How is this?
How has this happened?

From the sun-spotted kiawe forest
bordering aquamarine Hawaiian waters
to the windswept douglas firs
lining the streets of this valley city —

you have grown like your namesake,
the moon, which today blooms down on you
like the flowers now sprouting out of the soil
and reminding me of the past.

I am not the woman I was, before you
were planted in my womb
and I began the descent into my Shadow
that led me to the woman I am.

How is this?
How has this happened?

I lost much to motherhood.
But I gained so much more:
your mischievous laugh that keeps me from anger,
your ocean eyes luring me to joy.

I am a deeper woman, a conscious woman
because of the blessing and the challenge
of your presence, in the morning,
sweet soft face calling me to wake up.

You are four today, number of Being,
number of the solidity of the land
from which growth can happen,
the foundation that allows change.

How is this?
How has this happened?

I delight in your intelligence and relentless joy,
I have to hide my laughter at your mischief.
You are my strength.
My moon — light in the darkness.

Once, on a hot Maui morning,
I dreamt of you, two years
before you burst forth from my yoni
in a waterfall of strength and emotion.

Pisces/Aries Solar Eclipse Spring Equinox baby.
Today I remember. Today I am present with you.

I wouldn’t want this
or you
any other way.


spring equinox song.

flowers grow
from my lungs
every time
I breathe
the sun in

at the dawn
hope will rise
from my eyes

the night will end

and this love
in my bones
roots deeper
in the dark

but I
am ready
to bloom

rooting deeper.

I’m realizing that my problem may not,
in fact, be an inability to love stillness,
or a difficulty in being who I imagine
I once, perhaps, was.

In fact, it may not be a problem at all,
only a forgetfulness that weighs
on the senses and dulls the taste
of the life that licks my lips.

Who I once was does not exist,
and in fact I question whether that I
existed at all, because now
I am, quite simply, tired,

and rather lonely, but I’m lonely when
I’m being loved as well, so I know
that I’m tired not because of too
much activity, nor am I without company —

no, I believe now that I’m tired
only of complexity, the manufactured kind
that doesn’t realize that nature
is a series of patterns, fractals, repeated

in ever more intricate and beautiful ways;
and I’m lonely because these walls
are suffocating and I want more company
than people with screens acting as a

third-party, facilitating a connection
that, without pixels and data, could
root deeper. I want to mingle with your roots
the way trees do — beneath dark soil,

where, unadvertised, no hashtags, we embrace
and whisper secrets, exchange ecstasies
down where light is the electricity
between my fingers and yours,

where we drew it down from branches
full of activity, and now we’re
grounding each other, feeding each other,
forming a vast network invisible

only to those who look no further
than a mutual reaction to
the illusions projected by flickering blues.

We could be so much more,

and I am tired.

Come root deeper with me.

dream lover. [filed under: manifestation]

You’ll be as good as alone.
as delicious as alone.

Seamless in my days and nights,
the exhale to my inhale,
and I’ll bask in your light
the way I bask in the tired dawn —

alone alone alone, yet not alone
at all.

You’ll be the steam of hot tea
the nutrition of vegetable stew in the winter
(you’ll feed me
with your very presence).

The forest dappled with sunlight
and the ocean with all its moods
quiet my chattering, incessant mind,
allowing the voice of my soul
to speak in its hues of moss
and dusk-streaked clouds;

so it will be with you.
You’ll be Home.

You’ll be where poetry crawls safely
over my hibiscus lips;
you’ll be where my heartbeat slows
to the pace of frogsong,
bare feet on grass,

You’ll be as good as alone,
where loneliness falls away
and light soaks into the soil
of my life,

where I, as the wind and the river,
forever change
and am forever the same.


When I look at the stars
I look into paradox
where the edges of my skin
dissolve into starlight
and at the same time
I am still so painfully human

It’s like my deep DNA
remembers when I was just an
in the infinite density
of the hour before the dawn

and it longs again
to be part of that
quivering with eternity
and possibility.


We laughed
as we soaked in
driving beneath
a red evening sky,

red as the blood that
poured from me as I
birthed our child,

red as the unspoken
tinging the edges
of our guffaws,

knocking on the door
like shadows at the edge
of light,

We left it behind
with the last echoes
of our giggles
vibrating into the night.

the dawn will come,
as it always does.

the Shadow in the absence of social media.

My Shadow comes closer when I take long breaks from social media.

Without the distraction of putting on and maintaining a mask for an audience of mainly people who don’t know the true daily details of my life and my heart, I am confronted by the parts of myself I’m not comfortable with: the parts that are vain, that are avoidant, that are manipulative, that are resentful and judgmental; in the end, it is these things that have often driven me back to social media and the promise that lies there of crafting a gilded front for people to look at and for me to convince myself there is no Shadow.

I deleted my Facebook profile (completely deleted, not just deactivated) months ago, back in July. When one of my best friends died at the beginning of December, all social media seemed suddenly pointless and a waste of time; here was my beautiful lifelong friend, who on Instagram seemed so content and grateful for her life, for her family, for her homestead with its horses and dogs and house-in-progress. Yet, beneath the facade, her heart was breaking to the point of no return.

After her Celebration of Life, I deleted the Instagram app off my phone, which really only has the memory space for one app at a time anyway; I replaced it with Spotify and a steady stream of music to drown out the grief in my brain. Thus, for the past three months, I haven’t posted on social media (other than here on WordPress, which I don’t completely count because it doesn’t encourage users to present a facade of the lives in order to get and keep followers, like Instagram does).

The longer I am off social media, the more I am forced to be present with my life. Seeing, acknowledging, and learning about my Shadow has become a non-negotiable part of that social-media-less existence. Getting to know my Shadow, via my grieving process, has been difficult and heart-wrenching; there has been a lot of anger, a lot of resentment, a lot of grief, and a lot of tears arising at various moments, in between desperate bouts of sexual heat (another coping mechanism).

But I’ve discovered something else: the Shadow isn’t all nastiness and unhealthy patterns and bad coping mechanisms. The Shadow is also parts of me I discarded as a child and as an adolescent because they didn’t fit what I felt the world wanted from me.

The Shadow is also my child-self. The Shadow is me at five years old, ascending my favorite climbing tree to sit on the topmost branch and feel my spirit soar with the wind against my face. The Shadow is my young feet exploring the forest and talking to the plants and trees. The Shadow is my stubborn belief in magic and wonder and the spirit(s) of Nature that, even as a teenager, I snuck out of my bedroom window to commune with. The Shadow is my 13-year-old self that elected to stay home when my family went to a concert, claiming disinterest, just so that I could stand in the snow and sing to the milky full moon.

My Shadow is my heartbreak at eight years old, sitting in a bathroom stall and hearing my classmates talk nastily about me, how dumb and immature I was for still believing in faeries. My Shadow is my desperation to fit in, the hiding away of my wild nature, and my grief when my attempts to be like everyone else just didn’t work. My Shadow is my hopelessness when my adolescent attempts at activism were looked down on and ignored because I just wasn’t cool enough, just wasn’t popular enough, just wasn’t intelligent enough. My Shadow is my fear of never, ever being good enough to be loved.

My Shadow is the parts of myself that were never bad, really, but are wounded by my and society’s rejection of them. And my Shadow is asking to be integrated again. My Shadow has been asking me to heal its wounds.

Healing the Shadow, of course, isn’t easy work; there’s no 1-2-3 method for it, and the more I get to know my Shadow and think about my experiences since I turned 18, the more I think that the process of healing the Shadow requires both intention and natural progression: I don’t think I could have healed my Shadow at 18, because I simply didn’t have a deep understanding of what a Shadow even was, not to mention I was lacking in the deep self-awareness that sort of introspection requires. It’s because of my experiences the past almost seven years that I am now able to look at these parts of myself and say: This is my Shadow. She is part of me, and she is hurting.

But my best friend’s death was, in its way, a catalyst for forcing myself to really look at my Shadow; not just for myself, but for her. Healing my Shadow is for her, in a way, because in the end she didn’t have the strength to heal hers: in the end, she was happiest when she returned again to Spirit. But I knew my friend, and I know she’d want me to heal in the way she wasn’t able to in this life.

I’ve been starting small — small steps that already seem to be accumulating in big ways. Daily, or nearly daily, poetry has been a low-energy form of introspection and acknowledgement of my emotions (rather than my usual avoidant tendencies). Finally talking about what lies in my heart, even when I’m not sure how the person I’m speaking to is going to react.

I’m also trying to heal my Shadow by taking the steps to return to those feelings of connection and peace I found before I let society scare them into hiding. While reading Material Girl, Mystical world by Ruby Warrington (founder of The Numinous), in a section about “doing your dharma” (your life’s purpose), I tried a suggestion of hers for figuring out, or beginning to figure out, what your dharma is (other than diving into your astrological natal chart): thinking of what brought you joy, ecstasy, and peace as a child, before the world told you it was a bad thing.

I closed my eyes and instantly I was there, in the forests surrounding my childhood home, communing with the land, sensing and talking to, in my child way, its spirit(s). Think about why that thing brought you joy, Warrington advises, and the answer came to me almost instantly.

After giving birth, while I was still living in Alaska, I fell headfirst into herbalism, not just as a way to create medicines and live a healthy life (although that was certainly part of it), but also as a way to commune again in a deep way with the land and with its spirit(s). In some traditions of herbalism — most notably the Wise Woman Tradition taught by Susun Weed — encourages the creation of a connection to herbal allies, often through focusing on one wild plant at a time, not only learning all you can about that plant, but also communing with it in deeply spiritual ways.

How I felt during that period, when I was focused on wild herbalism and the spiritual process of wildcrafting, reflected how I felt as a child, when every plant and tree had a spirit that spoke to me. In fact, it was one and the same: a piece of my Shadow, beginning to be healed.

Unfortunately, some months after moving to Oregon, that passion fell once again into hiding as I dealt with deep emotional turmoil; I forgot about it and never picked it up again. Yesterday, as I envisioned that period of my childhood and remembered my lost joy in active communion with nature, I felt my Shadow stirring, saying yes yes yes.

I don’t know how long it will take to heal my Shadow. From all I’ve read — and I’ve read quite a bit — it’s a lifelong process; perhaps it’s something I’ll never be finished doing. But if I let myself become overwhelmed by the enormity of the task, then I won’t do it; I’ll freeze up and the work will be left in stagnation, just as it did when I gave up herbalism and froze my growth in the face of my separation from my daughter’s father and resulting existential fear that came to take the place of that relationship.

So I’ll focus on the present.

I started with poetry, and now that it’s a habit, the poetry will continue to flow.

And now I’ll return to the land. I’ll return to talking to the trees and the plants. I’ll return to the nettle infusions and chickweed salads and dandelion tea. I’ll descend from my head into my heart.

I’ll remember where lush lives: in the soil beneath my feet, and in the fertile darkness of my own Shadow.

gemini sun, virgo rising, pisces moon.

I am a butterfly
seated on a flower
rooted deep
in moist and numinous

my mind fluttering,
my body curving,
my heart flowing;

thoughts hungry for knowledge,
flesh hungry for grounded passion,
soul thirsty for gentle,


oceanic love.