celebrate, create, grieve, repeat: a poet returns

birthday montage
birthday montage

A few days ago another calendar year started for Mama C. Like your average bear I enjoy a little birthday love, some flowers, breakfast in bed. But, what I really love is the chance to reinvent myself, again. (January 1st, and Back to School also hold that possibility–or at least the excuse to start a new calendar and fill it with all the times I went to the gym this year. A week later, it’s amazing how much the old and the new calendar resemble the other…) This year Shrek and the boys helped me to craft a list of things I can feel fiercely fabulous about. Here are a few highlights in no particular order:

  • attending my first week long writers residency
  • crossing the country twice to visit my father and step mom with a different lad each time
  • a magnificent and robust urban garden in the summer and fall
  • several home improvements
  • transitioning to a part time job for one year
  • making ends meet on a part time income
  • volunteering in the boys’ classrooms once a week
  • co-organizing three epic cross cultural events at my sons’ school since last March
  • being invited to the “table” to discuss issues of race and equity in our school district
  • presenting on race and education to a graduate program in counseling,
  • parenting my big-in-the-world boys with some success
  • working it hard in the longest committed relationship I have ever been in
  • deepening relationships with five bonus children
  • planning a wedding
  • meditating and exercising regularly
  • noticing old patterns that no longer serve me, and attempting to change them Continue reading “celebrate, create, grieve, repeat: a poet returns”

The poet makes her way home

Poet Cat Maryse Anderson Day 7
Poet Cat Maryse Anderson
Day 7, Martha’s Vineyard Writers Residency
Mother Writer and her plant, Vineyard Ferry Day 8. Heading home
Mother Writer and her plant, Vineyard Ferry Day 8. Heading home

Today, simply a moment to hold space for the tremendous gift of my final day of writing on day seven, the residency reading that night, and the mystery and grace in the leaving.

On the forty five minute ferry back from Martha’s Vineyard,  I pictured a whale, hundreds of cool dark feet below me, getting ready to birth her first calf. I can sense the two of them in the emerging light of this Monday morning calm before it all begins again. The bold, exhausted exhilaration of the mother, knowing what she has accomplished. The semi altered state of the young calf, in her completely new environs, water rushing over her, milk flowing in her.  Her mother’s heartbeat familiar but slightly and always just out of reach.